Family Risk Factors That Contribute to Children's Reading DifficultiesRisk factors in the home that may contribute to reading difficulties include reduced opportunity for verbal interaction, low socioeconomic status, and family history of reading problems. "Risk" means a likely area of concern but not causation, however. Many children in individual and group risk categories do not have difficulty learning to read. The amount of verbal interaction that occurs in the home can affect a child's literacy development. Homes that offer less opportunity for verbal interaction result in children's reduced vocabulary acquisition, which in turn influences later reading achievement (Snow, Burns, & Griffin, 1998). Socioeconomic status can affect children's development in a variety of ways, ranging from medical and prenatal care to general child development. So many factors come into play when discussing families with low socioeconomic status that it is impossible to separate particular factors. Generally, the degree of impoverishment reflects the degree of risk. Children from families with lower socioeconomic status are more prone to reading difficulties and lower overall academic achievement than children from families with higher socioeconomic status (Snow, Burns, & Griffin, 1998). "In principle, low socioeconomic status could potentially carry risk for reading difficulty for an individual child and for entire groups of children," note Snow, Burns, and Griffin (1998). Children whose older siblings or parents have had reading difficulties may also be at greater risk for reading difficulty. Although parental reading difficulties are not completely predictive of children's difficulties, close monitoring of these children is strongly recommended (Snow, Burns, & Griffin, 1998).