All these reading threads are making me paranoid.....(22 Posts)
Just read that Hula's dd is on ORT level 6 my sa is exactly the same age and on level 1.
We look at his reading books everday. For example, he will struggle with the word THE on one page, then on the next act like he's never seen the word before.
Untill now I've tried not to stress, his teacher hasn't mentioned anything and he loves books and being read to, his vocab is fab.
What more can I/should I be doing?
Your son will get better at reading in his own time. If you sress he will be put off. DDused too get really stressed when she couldn't read a word so I started just telling her what it was then one day it just clicked and she is a really good reader now.
But if I told him everyword he can't read I'd be reading the whole bloody book!
How old is he?
Don't stress, they do catch up. My dd1 was reading freakishly early, ds was quite a bit later. Dd2 is nearly 4, so haven't even started yet. She's left-handed and still has some language oddities, so suspect she'll either catch on very quickly or it will take ages.
FWIW the crucial thing is not to plug real reading (ie. expecting them to decode, daily practice) until they are really ready. The actual process of learning to read is quite dull, so you want to leave it until they can get to the fun bit of reading actual books before they get bored with the process of learning to read, iyswim.
I've seen loads of boys who were pushed to read early and only ever saw it as a tedious task that teachers had dreamt up to piss them off, because they were nowhere near ready when they were made to start.
Well at that age anywhere between not reading at all and reading Roald Dahl independently is normal, tbh. So don't stress. Girls often find that level of abstractness more natural than boys, and are often better at sitting still too!
But do check whether he is being taught phonics properly. The early stages of ORT are very 'look and guess', with really odd choices of words -- blindingly obvious with the pictures, completely impenetrable without. 'Guitar', 'chicken' and 'headache' come to mind iirc. They get better at later stages (Stage 4+, the Magic Key stories) but the early ones are phonologically illiterate, and I find it slightly amazing that any child learns to read from them at all.
If you're not convinced by what's going on at school, and you are really sure that he's ready to learn, then buy Jolly Phonics and get cracking yourself. Regular practice is the thing too -- we used to do 5/10 mins in the morning and again in the evening. But as I said in my earlier post, do make sure he's ready before you kick off with a big push.
ORT is not great for teaching a child to read IMO. If your school is not introducing phonics in reception as it ought to be following the Rose report last year then following a systematic phonics-based programme at home isn't a bad idea. I used Teach your child to read in 100 easy lessons for DD2, and it helped her enormously with making the link between letters and sounds. here
DD1 on the other hand learned to read very young without phonics - she has a very good visual memory for the shapes of words, as does DD3, and I think that is quite a significant factor with any early readers.
Quite normal at that age to struggle with reading. DS1 was (quite bluntly) hopeless in Reception, started to pick up at the start of YR1 and now, just turned 7 and in YR2 is doing brilliantly - infact he's "overtaken" and "caught up with" a lot of children in his class - some of who were already reading when they started Reception.
Agree that there's plenty of time. IME boys do tend to be slower to get there. DS#1 was lateish to read - not fluently at all until end of Yr1. Reading age increased dramatically in Yr2 and again in Yr3.
it is perfectly, utterly, completely NORMAL (sorry for shouting ) for a 5 year old boy not to be reading
in many countries they wouldn't even be trying to get a 5 year old to read
it really doesn't matter if children aren't reading at the beginning of Y1 - neither of my very bright boys was reading at that stage, but somewhere between the middle of Y1 and the middle of Y2 it all clicked and they are both total bookworms, they read widely and independently with a reading age far ahead of their chronological age - in fact they have zipped past loads of children in their class who were 'ahead' of them in Y1
the most important thing is for him to enjoy reading and associate books with fun - if you get stressed about it he will pick up on it and the whole process will be fraught with anxiety
I think its a lightbulb thing. One day the light just goes on and door opens. Happens at different points, I'm still waiting for dd to have her lightbulb moment.
Completely agree there's a huge difference between abilities at this age, and then it all evens out as they get older.
If the school aren't worried, then I don't think you should be either.
DS could not read in reception .. he knew his phonics though
it clicked in Year 1 .. around October and then we had slow reding
now in Year 2 he's moving on to simple chapter books
it is not steady progress, it is fits and starts and loving it and hating it
Oh yes he knows his phonics.
Every Monday after school we o the libray and choose 5 books. He loves it. He crys if we can't go.
He truly has a love of books, I think after explaing 'THE' 9999999,0000000 times he should recognise it by now.......
But maybe I'll just chill out about it then
My 7 year old DS still takes the time to sound out a word on one page and then can't remember it on the next! His reading is improving steadily now and is 'average' for his age but it took him a while to get off the starting block.
I would not be too worried though as all children develop and learn at different rates. I was reading fluently at 4.5 (Narnia and Roald Dahl by 5.5) and yet neither of my brothers managed that until they were 8 or 9. Both avid readers now though.
ahundred - definitely a lightbulb thing with slower readers IME. DD was 'reading' from about 2.5 - ie she would sit for hours looking at books, turning over the pages and telling the story. And when she got to school it was simply a slow and steady increase in her ability until she became a good and very fluent reader. With DS#1 it was a process of refusing to read, fighting it, never remembering any words from the day before, failing to learn any of his keywords....to picking up a book and reading it from front in one go, literally overnight. And shrugging and looking quite taken aback by all the fuss that we made when he did it.
I'd make a 'thing' out of 'The' then. I do this quite a lot - with humour (I hope).
I say, 'you know what, this THE word is coming up an awful lot isn't it. Look at it, there is the T, then a H, standing up next to it, and then an E. The.'
And then when you turn the page, you say, 'Gawd, there it is again. They can't stop flashing this word around. What is it again?'
And then next page 'Oh fgs sake, they LOVE this word.'
You probably do this, or else is considered very inadvisable reading skill, but works for us, then dd says 'OMG, there it is again' and we laugh and I say weakly, 'Yes, what is it? Let's remember it.'
Forget the books for now - I well rememebr how early stage ORT really dented by dd's confidence - guessing and getting it wrong.
What worked with my ds was making it fun, relevant and active. We used to write things down - initially one word, and he had to run across the room and match the word with the object, then we progressed to very simple sentences eg run to the door . Boys love someone to do things with too - I remember one parent whose ds and dh used to have large letters spread out on the floor she would call out a sound and they would have to run to the letter - 'beating' Dad to the letter became great fun! Maybe you could try the same with letetrs hung from goal posts if he likes sport- has to hit the correct letter with the ball! There are other similar games here (post 7)
'I spy' helps with early decoding ability, and we had foam letters in the bath too!
Chidren all read at different ages but for me, phonics was definitley key, and all 44 sounds not just the 'alphabet' sounds; the initial 'stringing' them together to decode starts tricky but once they get the hang of that they fly. The Jolly phonics DVD is good with that because one of the characters is really quick to pick it up and the other 'struggles' and it helped my two to see someone else struggle but get there in the end iyswim!
I don't agree with these early books with one word per page in them either - my ds still confuses 'look' and 'like' because he was taught them by word recognition using these books so does not stop to spell them out in his head.
Please do not worry - he will get there and Stage 6 ORT at age 5 is very good reading indeed, definitly not the 'norm'
Northerner, if he knows his phonics, then I'd just concentrate on the phonetically regular words, tbh, and supply 'the' yourself. Sounding out words phonically and memorising sight words (the is a true sight word, unless most of the NC so-called sight words which are actually quite regular) are different skills, so best to keep the two apart if he finds it hard to switch modes.
Please, please don't worry. There is an enormous range of variation in reading at this stage, and children click at different times.
I would second what other posters have said about supporting his phonics and blending skills at home; I like Jolly Phonics too. I found those early ORT books baffling too and am amazed DS1 learned to read from them.
Interesting that he knows his phonics - but does he know all of them? I ask because my ds learnt 'the' as soon as he learnt 'th' in phonics - the action (sticking your tongue out) just intrigued him and I let him do it for 'the' all the time intially - anything to make it stick .
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