It turns out that there is good research from the U.K. that suggests if you use phonics you can actually improve the achievement of all kids and buck the national trend by keeping boys from falling behind girls in reading. For example, in the U.K. they have begun to use an amped-up phonics program that involves manipulating refrigerator magnet letters on a magnet board, which has shown to be successful for boys. Secondly, you can sustain these achievements by getting more boy-friendly reading material in the classroom â€” humor, non-fiction, action, Captain Underpants, Sports Illustrated.
You can also help boys become better writers by opening up the parameters of what is an acceptable topic to write about. Many boys don’t tend to spin out narratives in their heads about relationships. Often, they are oriented around plot and action.
If noisy, active boys with swashbuckling fantasies are suppressed in school, they’ll conclude the whole enterprise is “girly,” Tyre argues.