I have been homeschooling for going on four years now. The first year was more of a yo-yo motion with putting Jimmy in a various range of schools trying to find a school where he could go in our local area to no avail. During us trying to put him into a private school, we found out that he was really behind in his reading skills. Of course, I swore to the teachers he was just nervous and could read a lot better than he was letting on. In order to get him in that private school we had to have him spend an entire summer working on a reading program they recommended.
We did that. This program is called Raz-Kids. Now I swear by this program!! Come to find out Jimmy wasn’t just nervous, he really couldn’t read up to a 2nd grade level. He was more at the in between K-1st grade level.
I ended up devoting 2-3 hours a day with Jimmy that entire summer. The reading tutor gave me some tips to do with him as he was working on this program too.
Teaching Reading Tips
1.) Find some books that interest them and have them read it to you. Rotate the reading, another words, you read the odd pages and he reads the even or vice versa. If he struggles with the words just help him read them so that he can continue to enjoy reading his favorite books. This way they still maintain their love of reading.
2.) Use an online program that offers books for you to read online and also print out. Raz-Kids is perfect for this because they actually have the ability to click on the words and have it read to them. Plus they can print out the books and read them to you. They also gain rewards for their efforts too. (There are actually thousands of other programs that also work great too, but this one holds a special spot in my heart because we used it. Plus I just found out our current school also uses it as a part of their programs they work with too. Delbert will be signed up for it at the beginning of next year!!)
3.) Help him break down the words. I suffer with dyslexia and I can’t learn to read like most people. I had to learn to group sounds together and then create a word. I now teach my kids to group words together. I literally take a particular sound like (ink) and then make a HUGE list of all the words that I can think of that have ink in it. This helps them to sound out the words better. They can also visualize the words that rhyme with the word they are trying to sound out a lot easier too.
4.) Make them restart the sentence. This trick is vital! If they are reading and come across a word that they can’t read, help them break it down and sound it out. Then once they figure out the word, have them go back to the very beginning of the sentence and read it again. This helps them with confidence, retaining what the story is about, and also with their reading speed too.
5.) Don’t lose your patience with them. This one is so hard to do. At least it was for me because I’d have to listen to the same sentence so many times over. Plus Jimmy would read slower than a robot. There were also periods of time where he just didn’t want to try.
By using this method, Jimmy went from not only a 1st grade reading level to being able to read ANYTHING and I do mean ANYTHING I give him.
These tips actually sound easy and they truly are. It’s just time consuming. By the end of the summer my boy was able to read easily. It was the most remarkable thing to watch him grow in his independence. His confidence level grew. He now helps with teaching his siblings to read the same way I taught him.
Of course, now I have to watch what he looks at over my shoulder. He’s a little speed reader now too. He also has turned into our household spelling king. He feels like his whole world is opened up to him. He can learn anything that he reads too. It’s just absolutely the most remarkable feeling knowing I helped him get to that point.
What are some tips you’d like to add to this list?