Children anticipate success or failure based on their past experiences. Children who have failed in the classroom often consider themselves failures. Perceived inferiority marks a child’s self-concept and reduces the ability to learn. Remedial or after-school programs can help, but the type of program or group can also determine the difference between success and failure. The mood or attitude that a child brings to a remedial reading program may affect how willing that child is to cooperate and learn. If the remedial program simply repeats the method taught in the classroom, the child will, most likely, continue to fail. When children pull away from reading because they fear failure or doubt their own ability, they not only hinder their potential to develop, but also reduce their chance to succeed in life. My reading programs emphasize a completely new way to learn: we emphasize hands-on involvement and creative-art therapy to help students erase failure and replace failure with success.
Elaine Clanton Harpine, Ph.D.
Elaine is a program designer with many years of experience helping at-risk children learn to read. She earned a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology (Counseling) from the Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.