What is the best method to use to teach a child to read?
2. Sing the ABC’s. Get her to recognize the individual letters by sight.
3. If that is grasped, start teaching the sounds the letters actually make. Short vowel sounds on those vowels first though.
4. Get her to memorize with you something like twinkle, twinkle little star. When she has it, print it out on a big poster size paper. Take her finger and point through it. A child’s first real break into reading is that they have Concept of Word (or COW).
5. Get that older sister to read to her.
Yes, be grateful that your 5 year old wants to read. Tell her that until she can read on her own, you need to read to her, her sister needs to read to her, and anyone else who WILL will read to her. Tell her she can follow along and learn WHILE she’s being read to. Tell her to “track” the words along while the other person is reading.
Take her to find some books that she’d really like to read on her own. (Right now there’s a sale at Border’s on Step Into Reading books.) Start there — at Level 1. Those books are the easiest, and they use the most simple word forms — including phonics. (Sorry folks, phonics does NOT have a 100% acuracy rate, nor is it a sure-fire way to teach reading.) Make sure she’s pointing to every word so she can see the one-to-one correspondence. When she (and you) think she can read individual words, let her read them, so she’s actually reading, even if it’s only a word or two. Pretty soon, that word or two will become a phrase, then a sentence, and she’ll soon need minimal help.
But keep reading to her. Take her to the library and let her choose her own books, too. Get her her own library card so she has that sense of ownership and pride of being a reader. Mark celebrations with books for her “library,” rather than a trip for ice cream or a burger. If you look carefully, even thrift shops have wonderfully cared for books for nominal prices!
You start with the ALPHABET, letters.
Then simple workds. Single letter words A, I
Double letter words BE AN TO
If you’re REALLY SMART you’ll tell her what part of speech tye can be! Adjectives, Adverbes, Nounds Pronouns, Verbs or Action Words
Then you get into three letter words. See, the, and
Then you get into four letter words.
At that point you can start forming sentences.
See the bird.
See the bird sit.
See the bird fly.
The bird go high in to the sky.
Let her MAKE sentences of the words and then correct her, gentely, when she does wrong and praise her when she does right.
Like I said, you can ALSO get into DIAGRAMING the sentence so she knows what the parts of speech are.
YOu can also get into FON ETICS (Phonetics)
How you PROUNCE words, but I think that’s a little advanced, even for her sister.
Pictures also help.
Pictures of a bird
Pictures of a bird sitting
Pictures of a bird taking off and flying.
Pictures of a bird WAY UP in the sky.
Then she can GRASP the CONCEPTS based on what she already KNOWS from looking.
After a while you can sit and read to her with something like Dr. Seus and let her look at the book and the words.
Let her pick the words out. Show her the words.
Not all of his books are great for learning to read; some are bit too challenging because he makes up his own words. I used the following books with my son:
Dr. Seuss’s “ABC”
“I Can Read with My Eyes Shut”
“One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish” (This one is especially great for learning to read).
I started to read these books to my son when he was 3 1/2 , and by the time he entered kindergarten, he new most of his sight words.
Hope this helps!
Just based on my family’s personal experiences, I cannot overstate how much more effective phonics is than “sight-reading”.
It should be noted that the value of reading was stressed in our home and I think it’s a very important part of developing a child who is not only good at, but also ENJOYS reading. My parents read to all 3 of us kids every single day, starting while we were still in the womb until we were about 3rd grade-ish, at which point WE read to THEM every single night until about 6th grade.
Me and my younger brother both learned to read using phonics and all throughout school we read (and wrote and spelled) significantly above our grade level and excelled in english and foreign language classes.
My youngest brother was taught to sight read. He just graduated from high school and-no kidding-he is barely literate. If I had to guess, I would say he probably reads (and writes and spells) about like an average 4th grader. He was tested several times for dislexia and other learning disorders and is fine. He’s really a bright kid-he does well in other areas of school (except foreign language) and was even easily accepted into a ‘Gifted & Talented Program’. Conversationally, his english language skills are flawless.
I know everyone’s different, blah, blah, blah. BUT, from what I’ve seen, phonics is the way to go, without a doubt!
Then once she learns the basic skill of how to put letters together to form words, you can get her something like “Hooked on Phonics” which is appropriate for her age group (and her sister too!) and a lot of fun.
She doesn’t have to wait for Kindergarten to start reading… if you have high expectations, she will have high expectations.
Then you can begin to teach phonics – groups of letters that have unique sounds. But be careful, I’ve heard kids can get hooked on phonics.
(okay, that last bit is a joke!)
I did this with my son when he was coming up on 1 year old and he was beginning to read and write around 2 or 3.
When reading to her, point out each and every word, and read a book over again until she memorizes what words say what. This helps out alot!
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