Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Where does the time go?

I'm gonna brag. It's my blog and my kid and I'm allowed to brag. As always, there's a red x in the corner if you don't want to read bragging ;-p

I'm a reader. I'm always reading, reading, reading. I remember reading Dr. Seuss books sometime before Kindergarten started. Legend has it my mom thought I had just memorized One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish when I was about 4 and had me read the entire book to her....backwards. (yes, I succeeded. She should have known I was too hard-headed to let a silly little thing like that trip me up ;-p). I think reading is the most important thing a child can learn. There's no point in forcing them and making them hate it, but if they're willing, throw 'em all they'll take. I figure if you can read, you can learn absolutely anything. My main reason for going to a large university was that I didn't want the teachers to know who I was, because I wanted to be able to skip class. I generally despise the way most subjects are traditionally taught and either my brain works in a weird way, or there's truly an easier way to do it. Anyways, even with things like calculus and physics....good reading skills and sufficient practice, and you can work through a text book largely on your own and pick it up. I probably only attended half of my classes all through college---I still did the work and spent almost as much time, just did it in my own way. Homeschooling at it's finest, I suppose (and yes, my grades were mostly good if you don't count that last semester where I took an unbelievable--and stupid--22 credits plus 2 correspondence courses, but I still passed everything!). SOOOOO this freakish love of reading has served me well and I had always hoped to pass it on to my kids. I did not think that would be happening so soon!

I suspect Sierra loves reading because I'm always reading. If I'm honest with myself, I say, "just a minute" or "one more page" a little too often when she asks to play. I figure she's wanting to read so she can read with me instead of waiting for me. Ever since she started school (montessori school, so she has a lot of control on what subject she learns) she has had a heavy emphasis on letters and reading and has needed a little encouragement to work on other things. At home, she has started to pick up MY books and turn to page 63 (always 63...haven't figured that one out yet) and start trying to read. I finally got her a set of BOB Books. Two big thumbs up for these things. Each set has about 10 books (some more, some less) and a kiddo with the basics under their belt can read through one whole book by themselves in one sitting. There are great illustrations and there are questions about the book to discuss with your kiddo to foster reading comprehension. The books are organized in a completely logical fashion, slowly adding words and building up skills. There are a few sight words thrown in (i.e. was, saw, the), but only one new on is added every 2 or 3 books or so. The sentences start out something like, "Mat had a hat" and build up to two reasonably long sentences on a page. Sierra *begs* to read these books. And even lied one evening ("nope, I haven't read one with momma yet") to trick daddy into letting her read two in one night. She's completely through set 2 and I have to keep set 3 on a high shelf to keep her out of it.

I can't believe the time of spelling words we don't want her to understand is coming to an end!!! If you're working on introducing reading to a pre-schooler, definitely check out BOB Books!!!


Belinda said...

I can make another suggestion (if you allow any television; I haven't read you enough to know your stance on that)--the old "The Electric Company" shows on DVD!

I posted about it last year here:

Basically, my daughter went from a basic familiarity with letters and the sounds they make, and some word recognition, to reading entire beginner book all by herself in about 10 days. TEN DAYS. I was gobsmacked.

She will be starting kindergarten in the fall, and is currently reading the Laura Ingalls-Wilder "Little House" series. (What am I in for?) ;-)

Enjoy your blog, will be adding it to my already-bursting feed-reader.

Mama D said...

I've been talking with DH lately about how college is basically one long certified reading list. :)

Good job Sierra and Mom!

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