Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Beginning Readers

Over at the Castle

Because my boy is eleven, (ten when I started) 
this blog often focuses on that age group. I do
try to look back, but I also appreciate and post
tips for younger kids.
Fortunately, there's a wonderful group of moms
of kids with special needs that I know on and off
line. What follows is a chat about teaching your
young child to read sight words.
K: I'm wondering if I need to sell a kidney to pay for tutoring.
First grade homework is going to kill me!! 
Well, maybe not the homework but a certain first grader I know. 
One day he knows his sight words, the next it's like he has never seen them. 
Don't know if it's because he is tired or if it's normal.                              
Any books or resources to read about helping a little one?                                        Any classes or workshops to attend?    
L: Write each word on a separate 3x5 index card and tape it to a door. 
He must say the word before he enters the door                                             
(bedroom, parent's bedroom, front door, garage door, etc.)  
make it a game and he will get a lot of exposure seeing them on a regular basis. 
Change out weekly or when mastered. Hope this helps!
J: We drill with index cards. Five new words a week, starting with Primary Dolch list. Try and show the little guy each word five times, just sitting down and flashing them.... we do a zero second delay for the first few days -- meaning, we just show Charlie the card and say the word. After a couple days of that we start giving him five seconds.... meaning, we show him the word and wait silently for five seconds, if he doesn't say it then we say it for him and ask him to repeat it. Sometimes he needs a verbal prompt "read" just to get him unstuck. But this works really well for us. After a week he's usually mastered them. We start news words the next week, and a couple of times a week we show him the words he learned previously to make sure he remembers them. As we moved along we started to use the learned words for fill in the blank sentences. That also helped with handwriting practice.... sorry that was so convoluted, happy to show you sometime if that doesn't make sense.
K: We use index cards too. It just gets so frustrating sometimes. Try the Vanderbilt reading clinic 
  J: Our strategy was a little like L's, except we labeled practically 
everything in the house using a label maker (chair, floor, clock, window, etc..). 
Once he had an opportunity to examine these with no pressure for a bit, 
I would write same words on post-it notes (starting with just one word to 
keep it simple), and he would match by sticking post-it on labeled item. 
After all these were mastered, we removed labels and just gave post-
it's for him to stick in appropriate and varying places 
(still window, but different window) to check for comprehension and 
JS: We did that, loved that my kid recognized "refrigerator" 
before he had a clue how to say it. But what to do after you've 
labelled and mastered all the nouns in the house? If anybody is 
interested, here's a link to the 220 Sight Words (Dolch List) 
that is used, it's separated into pre-primer, etc. and there are 
some great lists and printables here, too.
*the above chat was lightly edited-any mistakes are mine.
Many thanks to all who contributed
their wisdom-I withheld names except
for Leisa's (she said I could link
to her wonderful blog) but friends, 
please feel free to comment
and take credit if you wish. 
-Spectrum Mom 
P.S. The book at the top is a rhyming 
sing-songy fun version of "over in the
meadow" with knights and dragons-just
right for this age group and for kids who
like patterns.

1 comment:

  1. Christine, wonderful idea to repost our Facebook conversation here. I used to get a number of blog ideas from other similar forum discussions.