Saturday, October 22, 2011

Homeschool Mother's Journal/Weekly Wrap Up (week 7) - Teaching Reading

There is no getting around it, teaching reading for me is scary. It's one of two skills they REALLY must master to be successful adults. I remember with the first kiddo we went through about 4 reading programs  before we returned to Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons. Now as am I teaching our second kiddo to read it was still scary but I felt a little more confident. Don't get me wrong I was definitely not running around going I got this thing! Just more comfortable with the process and more resigned to the fact that the Lord gives knowledge and understanding (Proverbs 2:6) so I was just waiting for Him to open the doors of understanding for her.

This week as we are nearing the end of our reading program. I've spent a lot of time thinking about how we teach reading as our 2nd child is reading on grade level (1.0-1.5) and by the end of our program I expect she will be reading at a 2nd grade level just like her sister was.

We use Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy lessons. We start TYCR100EL in Kindergarten. I combine it with Christian Liberty Press' Adventures in Phonics A-C which I start about lesson 25. We also start reading Bob Books as soon as I think the child is able to blend and knows enough sounds to be successful. By using Bob Books she gets used to reading books without the 'modified' alphabet TYCR100EL uses.

I use Adventures in Phonics because I found some of the images in Explode the Code were not glorifying God. I did not appreciate the pictures of vampires & witches that are in the books. This is simply a choice that our family has made about content in books.  I also felt like the my children flew through ETC and did not necessarily retain the information within it's pages. This is a complaint that I have repeatedly heard about ETC. I really like Adventures in Phonics and I feel like it forces the child to think about and use the rules they are learning. That said on occasion Adventures in Phonics will choose words that I do not believe are a good representation for a certain sound. For example something like using "gym" as one example to teach "g" . Other then that occasional issue it's a great a phonics program and I recommend it.

With this particular child she did not really grasp blending while she was in the first semester of Kindergarten. So after we spent a few frustrating weeks trying to get her to blend I finally put it aside. And we spent most of the first semester working through Christian Liberty Press' Adventures in phonics workbook & cards and learning our sounds. Then in February we went back to TYCR100EL and something has clicked and she was able to blend so we continued forward. Reading has the potential to be a very teary and frustrating process if we are not sensitive to our children. The best thing we did was to just stop trying to blend and continue learning our sounds with which she was having great success! By the time we returned to blending she was a confident sound knowing child and blending was very easy for her.

Now she is able to joyfully able to read a variety of  books. As we are nearing the end of the TYCR100EL she is really enjoying reading practice. Reading practice for us is when she sits for 30 minutes with me or a sister and reads a book aloud. As soon as we finish  TYCR100EL we will start Christian Light's Reading 100 like her big sisters. I tend to teach reading through 2nd grade as long as there are no fluency problems. Our homeschool is reading intensive and I it's my goal to simplify and combine as many subjects as possible.  

This weeks overview...
All the kiddos has tests this week. Sweetie had tests in English & Word Building. Bullet was tested in Math & Language Arts and little Sugar Pie had her 2nd Math test. I must say I've been pretty happy with their test scores. I attribute this to the introduction of self-checking. The children check their math & language Arts immediately after they complete it. This immediate feedback seems to be increasing their understanding. They are required to then correct their mistakes and then re-check their work. This was a concept mentioned by Elizabeth Botikin on her CD Curriculum Advice.

We of course had 2 Physical Therapy appointments, Speech Therapy, 3 Softball games & Piano this week. Piano lessons have been a bit more intense as 2 of the children are preparing for their Theory Test and 3 of the children are getting ready to participate in the Hymn Festival.

Big news in Softball is that Sugar Pie has learned how to hit a ball that is pitched to her and she does not always have to use a tee. Also, Bullet our soccer player wants to try softball next semester instead of soccer. Sweetie, however, is going to stick with bowling because she doesn't believe in sweat!

This post is connected to the Homeschool Mother's Journey

This is not linked to weekly wrap up as Weekly Wrap up family has lost a dear friend. Please pray for their family and Christina a Mama to 5 who passed suddenly this week.


Unknown said...

How wonderful that TYCTRI100EL is working for you and the kids! (I haven't seen Adventures in Phonics! Thanks for sharing!) Recently I went BACK to 100EL with my 6-year-old. We were using Hooked on Phonics since last spring. He struggled A LOT with 100EL last winter and we couldn't get past lesson 10, but he flew through it last week, going from lesson 9 to 25!

Mama Bird said...

I love the subtitle under the picture banner on your blog. I enjoyed reading your week.

texasmcvays said...

Thanks, Motherbird I thought it was funny too, true but very funny!

Otherside of the Mountain- Yep, when they get it they get it and it becomes a joy to teach it! :)

Thanks for visiting!

Unknown said...

Sounds like you are doing a great job with the kids!

We use an online curriculum (Time4Learning) so most of the work is done for me. LOL
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