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Learning to read

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  • Learning to read

    The phonics method is probably the best known and widely used method to teach reading and writing in the English language. It relies on children being taught the alphabet first. They learn the names of the letters and the sounds they make. Once they have learnt the letter sounds they will begin to blend two letters together to make simple words then three letters, then four and so forth.
    a-t i-t o-n i-f b-e m-e n-o w-e i-n h-e
    c-a-t s-a-t m-a-t f-a-t p-a-t r-a-t c-a-r g-o-d m-e-n
    f-l-a-t p-l-a-t t-h-a-t s-p-i-t g-r-i-t s-l-i-t
    For children to learn the phonics method they need phonically written books using regular words that are interesting to young children. Each word must be sounded out by the child in order to achieve the highest level outcome.

    The cat sat on the mat. The hen is in a pen.

    Learning the sounds and their blends may be disinteresting for young children so you should keep it short and entertaining. Often children are so busy concentrating on sounding the words and blending the sounds that they don't learn the meaning of the word, making it boring for them. Ensure you explain the meaning or expound on the words to keep interest and enthusiasm for learning. You can introduce one letter a day or one letter a week but the one letter a day method works quite well and it does not become boring, whereas one letter a week tends to drag out and the child often loses the plot halfway through.

    This in turn gives you a sense of failure and you will become bogged down. Don't be disheartened if two or three days or even a week is needed to master one letter, students will improve and before long you will find there is no stopping their young brain. Children are natural learners and are more than willing to please you thus doing well in their learning experience. Using the phonics method, most children will learn to read basic words and sentences within three to six months.

    An alphabet table using each letter sound.
    <table align="center" border="2" height="267" width="534"><tbody><tr> <td height="18" width="14%">a
    ape</td> <td height="18" width="14%">a
    antelope</td> <td height="18" width="14%">a
    armadillo</td> <td height="18" width="14%">b
    bear</td> <td height="18" width="14%">c
    civet</td> <td height="18" width="15%">c
    cat</td> <td height="18" width="15%">d
    deer</td> </tr> <tr> <td height="18" width="14%">e
    emu</td> <td height="18" width="14%">e
    elephant</td> <td height="18" width="14%">f
    fox</td> <td height="18" width="14%">g
    gerbil</td> <td height="18" width="14%">g
    goldfish</td> <td height="18" width="15%">h
    hippo</td> <td height="18" width="15%">i
    ibis</td> </tr> <tr> <td height="18" width="14%">i
    inchworm</td> <td height="18" width="14%">j
    jaguar</td> <td height="18" width="14%">k
    kangaroo</td> <td height="18" width="14%">l
    lizard</td> <td height="18" width="14%">m
    monkey</td> <td height="18" width="15%">n
    nightingale</td> <td height="18" width="15%">o
    okapi</td> </tr> <tr> <td height="17" width="14%">o
    ostrich</td> <td height="17" width="14%">p
    peacock</td> <td height="17" width="14%">q
    quail</td> <td height="17" width="14%">r
    rabbit</td> <td height="17" width="14%">s
    snake</td> <td height="17" width="15%">t
    tiger</td> <td height="17" width="15%">u
    unicorn</td> </tr> <tr> <td height="17" width="14%">u
    umbrella bird</td> <td height="17" width="14%">v
    vole</td> <td height="17" width="14%">w
    walrus</td> <td height="17" width="14%">x
    ox</td> <td height="17" width="14%">y
    butterfly</td> <td height="17" width="15%">y
    yak</td> <td height="17" width="15%">z
    The phonics system had been used successfully in the USA and Europe for many years to teach children how to read. It supplies the student with tools to expand their vocabulary. Using symbols on top of the following letters will simplify the letter sounds.

    <table align="center" border="2" width="80%"><tbody><tr><td valign="top" width="25%"></td> <td valign="top" width="25%"></td> <td valign="top" width="25%"></td> <td valign="top" width="25%"></td> </tr> <tr> <td valign="top" width="25%"></td> <td valign="top" width="25%"></td> <td valign="top" width="25%"></td> <td valign="top" width="25%">


  • #2
    Learning to read : Look and Say Method

    Look and Say method

    With the 'look and say' method children learn to recognize whole words or sentences rather than individual sounds. Your student will look at a word which you sound, and in turn will repeat the sound (the word). Flashcards with individual words written on them are used for this method often accompanied with a related picture.
    If you don't use a picture with the word the child will probably make a wild guess as to what it says trying to remember what sound you made previously. This is not a good method if you don't include pictures.

    It is also recommended with this method to use whole short sentences rather than individual words. Write a short sentence representing the picture displayed. Say the sentence and ask the child to repeat it while pointing and looking at each individual word as he/she repeats what you said.
    By making word cards you can create different sentences again and again. You can use each word card first to learn individual words and then laying the word cards together to form a sentence. You may need to make several word cards using the same word; e.g. the - and in order to form proper sentences.
    the is rat mat the on

    the rat is on the mat

    he look-see or whole-language approach (also known as "psycholinguistics") was developed by modern psychologists and denies the students the tools used in the Phonics system but teaches them to learn through rote memorization. Students could become poorer readers due to being forced to "learn to read" with the look-see methods, but if you have the teaching skills to combine both it would benefit your students enormously


    • #3
      Learning to read : Language Experience method

      Language Experience method

      The language experience approach is the third method you may like to use. This particular method actually uses student's own words to help them read. Your student may draw a picture of Dad in the car. In that case you would write underneath the drawing; Dad is in the car. You continue to collect drawings your student makes and write a short sentence underneath each drawing. A picture of a playground would read; We went to the park or playground. A picture of a cat could read; The cat sat on the mat. A picture of walking the dog could read; Mum walks the dog to the park.

      When you've collected enough pictures you make them into a book for your student to read again and again. Write underneath the drawing a description your student gives for the drawing. This way your student will remember much better what is written.
      First you will write every word and sentence. Slowly your student will begin to trace over the words you have written and finally the student will write the words and sentences all alone.
      Some people use this method as a first approach to reading in order to help their student understand that what they've drawn and what you have written is a form of communication between the student and yourself.
      The language experience approach supports children's concept development and vocabulary growth while offering many opportunities for meaningful reading and writing activities through the use of personal experiences and oral language.


      • #4
        Learning to read : Context Support Method

        Language Experience method

        When your students are just learning to read it is important to choose books that really interest them. If boys like cars, choose a book with pictures and simple words about cars. This will keep their interest and they will enjoy learning with you. If girls like dolls, obtain a book with doll pictures and simple words. Again it will encourage enthusiasm because they are actually looking at something they can relate to
        Some books are especially written to support this method of learning. You will find a longer sentence on one side of the page while the other side has a single word or maybe two to three words for your student to read. You will read the longer sentence while your student reads the simpler version.
        You may like to try this method of long and short text or maybe combine it with one or all of the other methods above. The debate still rages among educators, parents, and experts. Which approach to teaching reading works best? That is something only you can answer and it comes with practice and experience.
        Most children learn to read reasonably well between the ages of four and eight. Check the following 10 point checklist, which was originally written for parents to help ascertain if students are heading in the right direction.

        1. Do you read regularly with your child? (five or six days a week)

        2. Do you give your child time to browse through a book before attempting to read it?

        3. Do you show confidence in your child's abilities? Your lack of confidence may affect your child's ability to read.

        4. Don't tell your child you are worried about his/her reading progress. This will only fuel your child's problem. Discuss with your partner or other homeschool parent for advice.

        5. Does your child ever read to anyone else besides you? Try a grandma, neighbour, uncle, aunt, friend etc. It could make a big difference with your child's confidence to read.

        6. Do you expect too much to soon? Don't push too hard for immediate results. It takes time!

        7. Are you always rushed? Do you give your child enough time to read or write?

        8. Do you provide opportunities for your child to write? Such as shopping lists, names on the top of letters to friends or relatives, the child's own name at the bottom of a letter or card you have written.

        9. Are you using books at the correct level. Use easy books to encourage your child's abilities, making sure it is not too easy or you will undermine your child's confidence in him/herself. Don't choose books too hard, that also may undermine your child's confidence in him/herself.

        10. If you do all the above and you are still worried, your child's hearing or eye sight may have something to do with the reading problem. Visit your doctor for a check-up because hearing or eyesight could affect his/her ability to learn.


        • #5
          Re: Learning to read

          I might add an:

          11) Dose your child have a quiet time and uncluttered, well lite place to read? A time free from other distractions (distractions such as but not limited to: teasing siblings, TV and other children playing video games nearby)?
          We were put on this earth to help and take care of one another.