Every Minute Counts

“Mom, may we please read the Hobbit now?” asks my {Jill’s} 7 year old dear son excitedly.  He wholly enjoys diving deep into the fantastical world of fiction.  He craves adventure - Good guys.  Bad guys.  Sword fights.  And seeing light prevail in the end.  He eats books up and drinks them down like water.  My dear son is a struggling, keeping-his-head-above-water reader.  Yes, you read correctly, he's a struggling reader. 

He won’t be for long, though. 

My dear son enjoys literature read-aloud time during our home school day.  It’s his favorite.  To prepare for fluent independent reading, we practice writing, saying, and reading phonograms*.  We learn spelling rules.  He reads aloud to me books on his instructional reading level**.  We have a plan.  We are implementing it. 

Unfortunately, many educators and parents believe that reading happens naturally while they are facilitating discovery.  For some children, it does.  Others fall through the cracks.  Let's not let our children be the fallen.

Lesson Plan Ladies believe teaching reading should be methodical.  It needs to begin with listening and speaking activities like rhyming and changing beginning and end sounds.  Then it needs to continue with memorizing, saying, and spelling the 70 basic phonograms.  During this same time, spelling words and memorizing spelling rules begins.  Soon, as a product of all of the above, children begin to read words.  Then sentences.  Then paragraphs and books on their instructional reading levels.    

Reading is hard work.  My dear son sometimes gets exasperated.  Other times, he feels delighted and encouraged by his progress.  We desire to get over this learning-to-read hurdle in order for him to be effective in life, pleased with his accomplishment, and enjoy books the way he does during literature read-aloud. 

Dear Son, I love you and truly desire what is best for you which is why you may NOT skip your 20 minutes of reading tonight.  Every minute counts.  You're welcome.   

* A phonogram is a letter or combination of letters  that represent a sound.

**A book is on your child’s instructional reading level if he struggles with only 1 out of 20 words with satisfactory comprehension.