This longitudinal study of 105 economically disadvantaged children examined the relation between reading problems and internalizing behavior in 3rd- and 5th-grade assessments (8- to 12-year olds). The variable-centered results showed that reading problems predicted change in internalizing behavior in the context of child and family predictors. The person-centered results showed that children with reading problems in both grades had higher internalizing scores in 5th grade but not in 3rd grade than children with reading problems in 3rd grade or no problems. Child-reported negative emotion experiences varied similarly across grade. The results tie reading problems to emotional distress in school and support conclusions about the direction of effects and the internalization of academic difficulty for disadvantaged children.