Thursday, January 16, 2014

Learning to Read

Learning to read can be an overwhelming tasking, even for the parent. When to start? Phonics vs sight or whole language, what resources to use. As someone who has studied child development and still reads up on the topic the easiest and general rule is when your child starts to write letters it a great time to start learning to read. This is can be a long process so don't expect your child to be reading soon. Follow their lead, if they are writing at 4 introduce the letter sounds while they are learning to write. Do not push, some kids are not ready until they are closer to 6 and that is okay. Keep reading often to them and get them to love reading, don't make it a chore. I do short mini lessons with my daughter who is almost 4 1/2. We have been using some apps and the Finger Phonics series. We also on occasion read Bob books. Lessons are usually 5 minutes long and are done very relaxed. "Lets read this book together, do you want to play your phonics game on the kindle? Do you want to read a Bob book tonight?" I don't push, if she pushes back I stop. I've found short daily lessons are working for us. She now can read some simple words, cat, mat, sat, hen, pen. Working on rhyming words has helped a lot. We use letters from the fridge magnets or from a puzzle and will go through, m-at, r-at, f-at, c-at, s-at and so on. Liv is building confidence in her reading abilities, without pressure or fear of failure. I find the combination of sight and phonics is a great way to start and gets the best of both worlds. Here's to my little prereader

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