Friday, March 19, 2010

Reading Update

I haven't written much about Sammy's progress with reading because she hasn't been making much progress.  She learned her letters and letter sounds very early but then she plateaued.

She seemed to be stuck on the isolation of the sounds in words.  She was able to identify the first letter of any particular word back in the fall, but moving on to the last sound or the middle sound has been a challenge.  She'd occasionally spell a word, but it was never consistent.  One word she has spelled quite a few times is "red."  I was never sure why.

I actually haven't been working on it much with her; she has been doing a lot of work with letters and sounds at school to keep up what she already knows, and if she wasn't ready to move on, I wasn't going to push it.  Her brain probably just couldn't isolate those sound yet, or maybe she was just adjusting to the way they teach her in school.  Her progress stopped right around that same time.  None of this ever concerned me - it's just something I noted.

She's recently started making progress again.  She has started telling me the first letters of words more often and without prompting, so I know her interest is high again.  (No matter how many times I correct her, she likes to tell me B STARTS WITH BALL and C STARTS WITH CAT.)  When we play our games (from Montessori Read and Write: A Parent's Guide to Literacy for Children
by Lynn Lawrence), she now seems to be able to identify more of the sounds.  She might get them in the wrong order, and she still needs a lot of help, but I can see that she is able to recognize that there are multiple sounds in words.  She has also become very excited to learn that double-e says "eeeee" as in pee, and double-o says "ooooo" as in poo.

Sidewalk chalk has always been a great way for us to sound out words.  I'll pick a word and she'll tell me what letters to write.  Yesterday, she spelled "grass" (G-R-A-S) and "green" (spelled correctly) and "shoe" (S-H-O-O).  I picked the words with the double e's and o's on purpose since she likes them so much.

I felt so good about this phonetic approach when I found today, in Sammy's school folder, her moveable alphabet book (the teacher writes out the words that the child spells with wood cut-out letters) containing:

  • yelo

  • bloo

  • red

  • green

  • pinc

  • gold

It's pretty funny because the colors were some of her first spoken words, and now they are becoming some of her first read/written words.  I swear, this kid already has a hierarchy of values and she acts on it!

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