I had planned on waiting until he was around 8 before working on reading with him if he hadn't picked it up yet. Now I'm so glad I waited, because he reads so well, and he learned in his own time and way. I plan to do (or rather not do) the same with my younger two kids as well. I realize they might not read as quickly as he did, I think 5 1/2 is a little young, but I plan to give them until at least 7 or 8 I think, and I'm pretty sure they'd be reading by then. I do realize that different kids learn in different ways though, and if one of mine seemed to need extra help, I'd give it of course! I just want to give them plenty of time to try and work it out themselves first.
♥ Handmade dress shop owner and mama of five - our littlest just born in December! ♥
I strongly believe (I am a beginning reading teacher now) that when children are read to often, have a print rich environment, and are talked to about what is being read, then many can pick it up without "instruction"
Sounds like you are headed for the wonderful world of beginning reading very soon!
In short read to them and they will read.
Thus far we're just trying to take it easy and offer books suited to his interests. I was getting worried, but after reading everyone's posts I'm feeling better!
C ~ mama to (16), (13), (9) (5)
I actually bought the 100 Easy Lessons book, on recommendation from a friend... just haven't convinced myself that I can teach my 5 y.o. dd to enjoy something I LOVE using a means I will abhorr! While I've been procrastinating, she has gained a "word book" to keep track of words she knows how to spell on her own and wanders all day adding to it. Her 3 y.o. brother is inspired to write more than just his H
I wondered, deep down inside, if she just wouldn't get the hang of this herself, she sure seems to be curious enough...
Thanks for the insight!
I'm like many of you, taught myself to read at age 4(still love Dr. Seuss because I can actually remember the light bulb moment looking at the cover of one fish two fish--that word there is FISH; the rest cxme easy becuase my dad had read it to me often enough that I memorized it).
As a mom, I would try to learn how my little one learned. For example, I am primarily a visual learner; "sounding it out" and phonics had no affect on my learning; I just "see" the words in my head. But looking at a word in context enough times would teach it to me. So as I was learning, such lessons would have just been stumbling blocks. But someone who leanred more aurally would probably benefit more from having the letters and their sounds reinfoced.
Still, I wouldn't think too much about this; mostly, I DO think it's probably a case of putting the tools in front of a child and then getting out of the way...as long as we all recognize that a major tool is YOU reading.
DD is just starting to want to "write letters" (mostly inviting her dad to a neverending series of balls). It's so fun, this time of discovery in our kids' lives, isn't it?
I am all for kids learning to read when they are ready. If they ask for help, I'd help them, but I don't believe in actively teaching them. There is such a huge range of when children are ready that it really bothers me when kids are made to learn before they are ready. I do think they should be read to alot, though. I think this does actually teach them the basics, without actively teaching them, and in a way they enjoy.
When we started HS, I really pressured him, and he didn't respond well at all. Eventually, I backed off/gave up. Decided it wasn't working and took time off to regroup
We bought him a Pokemon handbook one night just because he really wanted it. And you know what? He taught himself to read with that book over the next few mths. Had it with him constantly, looked at it for about 8 hrs total per day, asked us to read it(which we did, but not a lot as we found it so insipid!, asked us what was this word, that word, etc. Soon, he had memorized many pages, and was sounding out the rest.
Almost overnight, he was reading!
The only other "instruction" we did was reading with him at night(and I would ask him to read a chapter of Beverly Cleary and then I would read the next one or two). Now, he reads at a very high level, and what is more important, he doesn't consider it "work" but fun.
Now, it is writing he is "late" with; but I plan to allow him to grow into it/encourage his interests in things which involve writing(like emailing his friend as he did today, writing a story for the anthology I contribute to annually and which he has been invited to submit to/be in, etc). I would rather he be a teenager before he writes well (or does cursive, FTM, which is, imo, penmanship, not "writing") than to have him write on demand and grow to hate it!
So, yes; my son "taught himself to read", as I did, as my dd will. It is tragic and ridiculous that we spend millions on "literacy"/"every child reading by 7" when it is such a natural, spontaneous process if not buggered up by faulty "teaching" methods! And of course, if there are printed materials in the home. Maybe it would be more cost effective to provide those families without such materials free subscriptions to National Geo. or Book of the Mth! LOL! JMO, Kimberly, mom to Forest, 9 and Lily, 2
You're thinking of phonics & decoding? Do it conversationally again; ie. how do you know that sign says Stop? I do have to say, though, that when we do a focus on a letter the kids LOVE it; ie. we sing all sorts of silly songs to go along w/the letter.
I tell parents over and over that just as important as learning to sound out is the skill of learning from context and picture clues; ie. what makes sense?
I agree that kids can teach themselves to read, but I think you're probably "implicitly" teaching her to read also by being a good role model and mommy.
Make sense? Hope I didn't tread on any toes.
There is also a little girl who watches a couple of hours of TV a day who started reading when she was 2 and was reading Nancy Drew books but the time she was 5.
All kids are different.
I don't know how it will all turn out for him, but I am convinced that unless the child welcomes an adult's help in learning to read, the results will be disasterous.
Our second child asked me to teach her to read when she was 5. I pulled out "100 Easy Lessons" and got to lesson 2 before we'd both had enough. I found it incredibly boring and she got frustrated, saying, "I already know the SOUNDS the letters make, what I want to know is how to READ!" She decided she would teach herself. By the time she was six she was reading on her own. She's now 7, reads very well, and most importantly, loves reading.
The baby will be exposed to lots of stories (as his brother and sister were) but I will not attempt to teach him to read. I'll certainly help if he asks for it, but I am confident that he will do it better without any "program." He may read at 3 or at 11 but I'm sure not going to push him.
Single Mom to 3 (12, 17 & 21) and .
Well, I read fairly early, by 4 or so, but as has been said again and again here, every child is different.
My son, who was read to from a few mths of age, watched hardly any tv for his first sev. yrs, and would sit and "read" books to himself from the time he could sit up, didn't read until 8. It wasn't particularly sad (other than my early expectations and consequent pressures I placed on him! He was engaging the world in so many other, concrete ways, the fact that he didn't feel much need for a more abstract way of learning/engaging was of no concern(to him, at any rate
And because I finally wised up and let go of my arbitrary expectations, he was able to grow into that skill in his own time, and is now one who will enjoy reading for life.
I recently read an article on education reform, and Rod Paige, our national education head, was quoted as saying, re' the need for more and earlier literacy programs, "Reading is the basis of ALL learning." It really struck me that THAT idea is one of the biggest problems with the current system/approach. What? Reading the basis/sourse of all learning? Hogwash! We learn constantly in a myriad of ways, and most of do so best through hands-on and/or first-hand experience (esp. true of children!) But in our schools, it is too often the case that reading the written word (and re-gurgitating it on command) monopolizes the process, when it is but one way of learning(and not even the best suited to children.)
But we persist in pushing for younger and younger readers, assuming they will grow into "well educated" minds. In my opinion, the very fact that we feel the need to spend billions of dollars "teaching"/forcing kids to read says a lot; it says they are not yet ready, and that the methods employed do more to inhibit the inborne curiosity and drive to emulate adults than they do to encourage those traits. I have never known a child who didn't WANT to learn to read, when they were dev. ready, who wasn't pushed to do so too soon and developed blocks to it as a result. JMO.
I guess I'm just happy that I was able to spend those years reading and I would like other children to know that happiness...but I'm sure everyone can be happy and have fun reading no matter what age they learn.
My two youngest children did not read until they were 11. One day they just could read at an adult level. I had asthma by the time the youngest was born and I couldn't read outloud to him (that is when you know you have BAD asthma) so I was a little concerned about him. Everything turned out OK and he is a great reader like his brothers.
Single Mom to 3 (12, 17 & 21) and .
I just think it's important to note that allowing a child to learn to read at his or her own speed doesn't mean doing nothing. I have heard of people (although it's all second-hand) who didn't want to interfere with the child's natural learning process, so when the child asked, "What's this word?" they wouldn't tell him. I think that's wrong.
Single mom to Rain (1/93) , grad student, and world traveler