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#1 of 20 Old 11-26-2011, 06:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So my little daughter will be five in January and has asked to help her learn how to read.  I have explained that she is young to read and when she is ready she will be able to teach herself (because she does have outside influences like grandparents asking if she can read yet. demon.gif and if she wants to learn how to read).  After I explained everything she still keeps asking me to help her.  So any suggestions? I was looking at 100 easy lessons book but I would like to get some advice/guidance/counsel from mamas who have "been there/done that."  I don't mind if she starts and then decides she is not ready but I do want to honor her asking.  So how should I? Any good books? plans?

 

thanks!


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#2 of 20 Old 11-26-2011, 11:31 PM
 
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I would go for the Bob books. They are less formal than the 100 easy lessons, and she might well be able to sit and teacher herself with them. My girls learned how to read with them (I did have 100 lessons, but we didn't use it). The first book only uses 4 letters, the 5th set  has long vowels and everything.


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#3 of 20 Old 11-27-2011, 04:00 AM
 
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I think the best way to teach your children to read is by reading to them!  Read often and read different things. . .read that book your child loves to hear over and over again.  If you want to start lessons. . .and if she really wants to learn to read, maybe try the Bob books and some basic phonics.  Don't pressure, have fun and don't move to quickly. . .if she wants to do it, she will do it with or without your pushing.


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#4 of 20 Old 11-27-2011, 04:38 AM
 
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Here is what I do.

My 9yo, 7yo and 5yo can read now.  My 4yo is asking for me to teach her so here we go again!! lol

I figure out what level they are at.

Do they know their letters and sounds to them?  If not, they should know this first.  My 4yo doesn't know this yet so we are having fun with letters to get her more familiar with them.  It would be hard to sound out words when you can't remember their sounds.  Make sure he has a good grasp at this first.

We use BOB books.  I think this is why my 4yo wants to read.  She has seen her siblings go through the sets and she wants to too.

My son (5yo) was sounding out all of his words but when he would sound out a word like C-A-T he would do C AAAAA T but then say lamp.  He couldn't sound out a word and then know what it says.  I knew he wasn't ready.  We still did what he wanted but I stepped back a bit.  About 6 months later he asked again.  We grabbed the BOB books and he was ready.  He was sounding out the words and then knew what they said.  It is like a connection they have to get.  Once my kids have this I know they can teach themselves.  I still sit with him and go through the BOB books but just for fun. :)  I always wait for them to be interested and we get into it.

I bought 100 easy lessons but it was too technical and not much fun.  BOB books helped them feel accomplished when they were finished.  It also helps that I talk about the story as they read it.  I say things like...Oh I wonder what is going to happen next!!  Oh my goodness, where do you think the kittens are?  That way it puts the attention on the exciting story instead of them having a hard time with a word or two.  And that helps them see that they are reading a story and not just words.

That is just what works for us.  Have fun!! :)

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#5 of 20 Old 11-27-2011, 06:46 AM
 
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Does she play online at all?  Starfall.com is a great resource for learning to read.  Also the BOB books, as others have mentioned.  

 

I don't think almost 5 is too young, at all.  Seems like the perfect age for some kids!

 

I wonder about the "teaching themselves" thing - in a way my dd DID teach herself to read but with the BOB books, the ds game Scribblenauts, starfall, and asking a lot of questions.  So, while we didn't have any formal lessons or workbooks, she didn't just pick it up without any resources or guidance either.  


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#6 of 20 Old 11-27-2011, 12:20 PM
 
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Ds expressed an interest in learning to read.  I got a subscription to Reading Eggs. He likes it.  He doesn't play it that much (mostly because we try to limit screen time).  I dunno if it is going to "teach him to read," but it makes him feel confident.  Some of the games are too fast for him (he gets the concept but doesn't have the reflexes and mouse skills to complete the task) so I do have to help him sometimes. They usually have a free month trial and I was able to Google a coupon code for it when we first got it for 50% off.

 

We check the BOB books out of the library.  Our library has the boxes with the single books and the ones that have the CD and 4 books in one.

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#7 of 20 Old 11-28-2011, 01:44 AM
 
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Originally Posted by tbone_kneegrabber View Post

Ds expressed an interest in learning to read.  I got a subscription to Reading Eggs. He likes it.  He doesn't play it that much (mostly because we try to limit screen time).  I dunno if it is going to "teach him to read," but it makes him feel confident.  Some of the games are too fast for him (he gets the concept but doesn't have the reflexes and mouse skills to complete the task) so I do have to help him sometimes. They usually have a free month trial and I was able to Google a coupon code for it when we first got it for 50% off.

 

We check the BOB books out of the library.  Our library has the boxes with the single books and the ones that have the CD and 4 books in one.



 

We just signed up for a trial with Reading Eggs mostly for my MDS. He likes it so far and he is hard to please! Thanks for the info on the coupon!

 

This thread also reminded me of the light switch concept...I worry and worry they aren't picking anything up then one day it's like a light switch turns on in their brain and they are doing the task and doing it well...hope you find something that works.

 

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#8 of 20 Old 11-28-2011, 08:37 AM
 
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www.progressivephonics.com is another good site.  Its little reader books like Bob, but free to read on screen or print out


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#9 of 20 Old 11-28-2011, 09:12 AM
 
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I have an 11 year that asked for help around that age and still struggled to learn to read. I have a 7 year old that wanted to be read to until we were hoarse who reads pretty well and loves Explode the Code. 

 

It seems to me that if unschooling means anything, it means responding with a "yes" when your child asks to learn something. I personally like progressivephonics (wonderful shared reading), Reading Eggs (which now goes up to 12 years) and The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading, with a little All About Spelling thrown in. 

 

There is a completely normal span of time when kids start reading and turning 5 is not too young. (It's too young, imo, to *push* reading which is different.) Your answer seems more "Waldorf" than "unschooling." 

 

Waldorf education *discourages* reading before the baby teeth fall out, or around 7, then introduce it through stories and art. 

 

If you resonate with Waldorf, but want to provide the "yes" learning environment that unschooling requires, maybe you could start with Schrager's LMNOP, the Enki alphabet stories in first grade (if you can get your hands on them) and Zonneveld's Living Alphabet, Oak Meadow kindergarten/1st grade materials and Davidow's early readers.

 

Here's a link to the online unschooling resources bookstore "Reading and Writing" section: http://www.fun-books.com/reading.htm

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#10 of 20 Old 11-28-2011, 02:08 PM
 
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Agreed that 5 is too young to *expect* reading, but many many kids are indeed ready at that age or even younger.  I wouldn't tell her that she is "too young", but maybe say something like "many kids your age are not ready to read independently yet, but if you want to try it we'll give it a shot.  If we try it for awhile and it looks like it's too soon, then we can put it away and try again later.  Are you okay with that?"  Or something along those lines... just to make sure she doesn't feel like a "failure" if it doesn't go well.  But *usually* when they're asking to learn it's one of the good signs that they are ready.

 

I was also going to recommend Progressive Phonics and Reading Eggs.  My daughter loves both of these.  She turns 5 next month and is already at aboug a grade 1 reading level -- we've been entirely led by her all along.  We're not 100% unschooling but are still child-led to a great extent.  She was reading basic words like 'cat' and 'red' when she was 3... but levelled off there for pretty much a whole year before she started 'progressing' again.  That was her 'learning curve' heh.  :)  There were times when she wanted to practice reading and play word games ALL THE TIME, and other times where she refused to have anything to do with it... we just respected her moods.  And when she was ready, she became fascinated with it again and would have a leap forward!

 

 


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#11 of 20 Old 11-28-2011, 04:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by tankgirl73 View Post

"many kids your age are not ready to read independently yet, but if you want to try it we'll give it a shot.  If we try it for awhile and it looks like it's too soon, then we can put it away and try again later.  Are you okay with that?"


This is perfect! I'm the mom to three kids who were reading by 4.5. When my one kid who wasn't spontaneously reading by four and a half asked for help learning, that's what I told him. It didn't "take" at the time, and we were both fine about it, since there were no unrealized expectations. A few months later, at barely 5, he was off and running. For me one of the joys of unschooling is being free of expectations based on age, because invariably my kids are ready "too soon" or "too late" according to conventional expectations. With unschooling it doesn't matter either way.

 

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#12 of 20 Old 11-28-2011, 07:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chfriend View Post

I have an 11 year that asked for help around that age and still struggled to learn to read. I have a 7 year old that wanted to be read to until we were hoarse who reads pretty well and loves Explode the Code. 

 

It seems to me that if unschooling means anything, it means responding with a "yes" when your child asks to learn something. I personally like progressivephonics (wonderful shared reading), Reading Eggs (which now goes up to 12 years) and The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading, with a little All About Spelling thrown in. 

 

There is a completely normal span of time when kids start reading and turning 5 is not too young. (It's too young, imo, to *push* reading which is different.) Your answer seems more "Waldorf" than "unschooling." 

 

Waldorf education *discourages* reading before the baby teeth fall out, or around 7, then introduce it through stories and art. 

 

If you resonate with Waldorf, but want to provide the "yes" learning environment that unschooling requires, maybe you could start with Schrager's LMNOP, the Enki alphabet stories in first grade (if you can get your hands on them) and Zonneveld's Living Alphabet, Oak Meadow kindergarten/1st grade materials and Davidow's early readers.

 

Here's a link to the online unschooling resources bookstore "Reading and Writing" section: http://www.fun-books.com/reading.htm



i guess a little more background into my request: my daughter has never exhibited any interest in learning to read until her grandparents started in at her.  I don't think she even knows one letter. She has never asked about learning letters or the sounds they make or even trying to write her name.  So I am not trying to discourage her, I am just trying to explain that if she fails it is okay because she is young and might not be ready to read.  i have bought some bob books and 100 lessons book.  We read to her all the time - we don't have a TV so reading is our main source of entertainment.  I am trying to honor her request and help her succeed... thanks for all the support!


Legal Mama to TWO homebirthed, unschooled, unvaxed, cloth diapered, mei tei loving, still breastfeeding baby girl 1/14/07 and an intact 8 pound 10 ouncer baby boy 4/5/10.
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#13 of 20 Old 11-29-2011, 06:35 AM
 
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I get the grandparent interference irritation, but motivations vary a lot for kids learning things. I've got one that learns a lot from quiet competition with her friends. 

 

If she doesn't know her letters, the Waldorf alphabet books and the early starfall stuff (videos and songs about the letters) are nice introductions. If she likes sitting work, the Handwriting Without Tears books are pretty good there. (The later starfall stuff didn't compare to reading eggs, imo. Pretty much not useful here.)

 

100 EZ lessons got tried a couple times...I now call it "How to Read in 100 boring lessons" but ymmv.

 

Do you have sense of how she learns best (hearing, doing, seeing, direct instruction?)

 

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#14 of 20 Old 11-29-2011, 08:17 AM
 
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i guess a little more background into my request: my daughter has never exhibited any interest in learning to read until her grandparents started in at her.  I don't think she even knows one letter. She has never asked about learning letters or the sounds they make or even trying to write her name.  So I am not trying to discourage her, I am just trying to explain that if she fails it is okay because she is young and might not be ready to read.  i have bought some bob books and 100 lessons book.  We read to her all the time - we don't have a TV so reading is our main source of entertainment.  I am trying to honor her request and help her succeed... thanks for all the support!

We never went with curriculum, but I would ask at story time if my daughter, then 5.5yo, wanted to practice reading.  Some of the time it was "yes", some of the time it was "no".  She reads very nicely with this seemingly haphazard approach.  What I would do in the very beginning is revisit library books that we loved and were nearly memorized.  Then familiar books that she hadn't.  We borrowed baby board books again, the kind with one word on each page or other simple text.  For a while it was all about Garfield books.  Mainly, though we would just read, though the difference was that I was more proactive in seeing if she wanted to practice.  (I've said soooo many times how silly English seemed with all it's different pronunciations.  I think it diffused any potential stress about learning to read it.  Also, I wouldn't hesitate to try to pronounce long, unfamiliar words myself, like names in Greek mythology, and then follow up with the dictionary.  Even grown-ups need help sometimes!)

 

DD2, 5, likes to write long strings of letters, or lines the letters from the alphabet puzzle up, and then asks me to pronounce it.  I follow with my finger and we both get a good giggle out of the result.

 

I would start simply, and if your daughter loves it but wants a more academic approach *then* look into curriculum.  I don't see any reason to commit to something like that if it's more than what she is expecting.
 

 


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#15 of 20 Old 11-29-2011, 08:33 AM
 
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If she doesn't yet know her letters, but is asking to learn to read, you could play word-hunt when you're reading aloud to her. Choose a picture book with a fair bit of repetition. Show her what one of the repeated words looks like, for example, one of the characters' names. "Here's 'Harry,' see the upper-case 'H'? That makes the 'hhuh' sound that starts his name. Every time we turn to a new page, why don't you look and see if you can find any Harrys printed there." Then you read the book, and every time you turn the page, give her a chance to find that Harrys. She'll probably feel like she's reading (a bit) because she's recognizing an entire word ... but she's learning letter sounds too. And it's combined with reading aloud to her, which is enjoyable, and great for her literacy development in so many ways.

 

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#16 of 20 Old 11-29-2011, 09:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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i am still not sure how she learns best. i know she loves stories.  oral stories and written stories.  we haven't done much computer around here so she might like reading eggs...any more suggestions?thanks


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#17 of 20 Old 11-30-2011, 09:34 AM
 
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I love the fact that folks here understand the importance of readiness rather than age! If there were more acceptance of this in schools, and the pressure to start so early were removed, I wouldn't have so many struggling readers and desperate parents to help. 

 

Bad for my businesss, but marvelous for the children concerned! ;)

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#18 of 20 Old 11-30-2011, 10:05 AM
 
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We unschooled last year for half the year and when DD2 went to 1st this year her reading was below what they wanted her to be at.  When I talked to the teacher I felt like I was calming her fears.  I kept telling her she'll read when she's ready.  And what do you know, she right on target and it's December.  All because she decided she was going to get this reading thing down. 
 

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I love the fact that folks here understand the importance of readiness rather than age! If there were more acceptance of this in schools, and the pressure to start so early were removed, I wouldn't have so many struggling readers and desperate parents to help. 

 

Bad for my businesss, but marvelous for the children concerned! ;)



 

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#19 of 20 Old 11-30-2011, 01:24 PM
 
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To learn letters, we played with our plastic letter magnets a lot. As they played we would talk about the sounds each letter makes. One year I kept finding them in the Christmas tree (it was near the fridge). So I bought 4 more sets and a bunch of hangers and we decorated the tree in colorful letters! The kids loved the silliness of it and we talked a lot about letter sounds that year!


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#20 of 20 Old 11-30-2011, 02:03 PM
 
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I agree with the bob book poster.  Also, I never thought I'd say this, but the hooked on phonics program works too.  But, Bob books, 100%

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