If you are a parent, grandparent, or carer, who wants to teach your little one how to read, then I hope that I can provide some help and guidance.
I have been a teacher for nearly 10 years (teaching in London, England), have an MA in Education from UCL (my dissertation topic was on assessment in the early years foundation stage), and I have just taught my 4 year old son to read simple 3-letter words by practising around 5 minutes a day (we started the reading journey when he was 3 and a half). I didn't teach my son how to write the letters when I taught him his sounds for two main reasons. Firstly, he showed no interest in writing letters, and, secondly, he was still developing his fine motor skills; manipulating the pencil to create certain strokes was too tricky for him at that time. We are just now beginning to write letters, starting with those in his name. I'll write a separate post just for writing, later.
I was fortunate that my experiences of teaching reading to children gave me the confidence to teach my son. So, in these series of blog posts, I aim to share with you my experiences, which I hope will also help you with teaching your child to read at home. I won't overload you with information (I hope!) and will assume that you are completely new to this, so I will leave most of the technical jargon behind to instead focus the blog posts on the skills that are important to develop. I will share with you my home videos so that you can see the reading process in real life.
So, let's make a start.
There are 3 main stages to early reading and each stage will be covered in more detail in their own dedicated blog post (note: I have made up these "stages" to make the process very clear for you. If you read the handbook for commercial schemes such as Read Write Inc or Jolly Phonics, they have split their scheme into "phases" that splits the reading process into many little steps which is super helpful for teachers and childcare providers. My blog is aimed at parents and carers who want a just-tell-me-what-to-do approach to teaching their child. In my blog posts, I will just pull out the core skills that you need to teach your child.) Stage 4 onwards will look at how we can move our little ones on to begin reading phonics books.
Stage 1 is oral blending and segmenting. Click HERE to go to the blog post.
Stage 2 is learning the letters that represent the sounds (grapheme-phoneme correspondence). Click here [coming soon] to go to the blog post.
Stage 3 is reading simple words. Click here [coming soon] to go to the blog post.
(The links to stages 1-3 are still being written. Join The Story Seed Facebook page to keep updated!)
You can see a flow chart of the process below.