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How quickly did your kids learn to read?

98 replies

NotUmbongoUnchained · 06/11/2018 11:23

Daughter is 4, she’s just started school, birthday is 30th August so she’s almost a year younger than most of her class.
She knows all the alphabet, her witting is fantastic and if I tell her a word she will sound it out and write it down.
But she can’t read sounds together. She can sound out each letter, but can’t put the sounds together to get the word and we’re both getting frustrated with each other!
Is this normal? How long should it take her to put the letters together. I know she’s a little slower because she’s tri lingual.

OP posts:

NotUmbongoUnchained · 06/11/2018 13:28

I always lose the thread! It always disappears from my “I’m on” thingy.

OP posts:

PhilomenaButterfly · 06/11/2018 13:31

Hang on...


2isabella2 · 06/11/2018 13:33

My daughter is the same age - she's great at sounding them out too but blending is harder and she's just started to get it. I found words with m (mmm) were easier for you as you can make it a continuous noise - ie mmmmmmuuuuuuummmmmmm without any breaks. She started to get it about two weeks ago and has made a lot of progress since then, something just clicked.

The teacher said just help them and keep repeating it if you need to to the extent you're pretty much saying the word but when they say it back give them loads of praise anyway.

Good luck.


PhilomenaButterfly · 06/11/2018 13:35

I've tagged you. 😊

I think 3 books a night is a lot for a 4yo. I don't know how multilingual families go about it.


NotUmbongoUnchained · 06/11/2018 13:38

She’s very insistent on the book Grin we would read 10 if I let her so we’ve made the deal on 3.

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NotUmbongoUnchained · 06/11/2018 13:39

Oh no I turned off the tagging notifications. I’ll see if I can find it.

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BrieAndChilli · 06/11/2018 13:39

you need to remember that every kid is diffeent but they all get there in thier own time
DS1 taught himself to read at age 2, DD learnt at what I would say was average speed for her class and DS2 took a lot longer and is still behind at nearly 8 although he did/does have hearing problems which affected his speech and the way he heard words.
They have all been taught by the same parents, and the same teachers and had access to all the same things (we have literally 1000s of books at home) yet they all learnt at different speeds.
I would aim to keep her interested and enthusiastic about reading rather than trying to push her and make her top of the class.


PhilomenaButterfly · 06/11/2018 13:41


Idontbelieveinthemoon · 06/11/2018 13:42

I teach Reception and agree that three books a night is a lot, and that she's doing incredibly well for so young.

Read with her every day, make it a positive time and try to encourage rather than feel frustrated - she could easily pick up on your frustration and feel unhappy at her perceived 'failing'. Don't for one second feel bad that she's not doing it yet - she will, and absolutely don't compare her to peers - they all do things on a different timescale and not once in all my years through University and work has anyone asked me "when did you learn to blend" because it just doesn't matter.


Natsku · 06/11/2018 13:43

4 is so young and English is so hard, it'll take time. My 7 year old has been doing reading eggs for a year and she started to blend sounds together after a couple of weeks and can read short sentences now a year later but is still a long way off reading confidently, whereas in comparison she started learning to read Finnish in school in August and can read fluently now. English is so so hard!


reallyanotherone · 06/11/2018 13:44

Mine were both in year 4 before they could read vaguely fluently. So what, 8 years old?

It’s not held either of them back academically. In fact both of them are doing very well in secondary, and have an excellent work ethic.

Otoh, i could read before i went to school. My mother still brags about it Hmm. I loved reading. However, i then spent about 10 years living in the land of stories, was bored at school so became an expert in reading my novel under a table while the class went on about me. Did no work whatsoever.


timeisnotaline · 06/11/2018 13:47

So just reading to them is just as effective as making them read?
Yes yes yes them wanting to read stories is the best thing you can possibly do. So,
-Relax, she’s not yet 4.5. Make it fun.
-Agree with try to get some common words as sight words to help her feel better.
-Don’t expect her to instantly be up with the class whether she’s bright or not, age does help and she will catch up.
-Relax, she’s not yet 4.

  • if she can spell words out and write them, get her to read them back afterwards to close the loop. As long as she doesn’t mind, don’t make it into work.
  • I know for the multilingual approach it’s good to have all languages at once (from the different native speakers) for speaking, I wonder if reading is the same though? It’s a different brain process, I’d look into that.
  • ignore your mum, she’s very unhelpful. I could properly read at your dds age but I’m not an idiot and don’t at all expect that my son will be able to. My mum would never say anything like that.

PhilomenaButterfly · 06/11/2018 13:50

That's encouraging really. DS2's just started short chapter reading books and tells me that reading's boring. I bought him Father Christmas's Fake Beard by Terry Pratchett, to see if that would spark an interest. He's read a page and a half of the title story. 😢


Ohyesiam · 06/11/2018 13:52

My dd ( August birthday ) seemed to learn to read without being taught in reception. My ds took forever, spent ages making no progress, it finally clicked when he was 6.
Now he reads every day, but dd only reads her bloody phone.

Try to step back and see the long game, make books and reading pleasurable. Let her see you read.

If she is having problems on year 3 , then you can worry.


Roomba · 06/11/2018 13:58

This sounds very normal to me, at this stage.

I also recommend the Reading Eggs website (it's probably an app you can download these days). We signed up for it to help DS1 as he had the same issues. He loved it and it really helped.


Fluffyunicorns · 06/11/2018 13:58

My son's school did phonics way back when ...
But he never mastered it - learnt all his words from look and say and did not bother with the sounds at all. Think the first book only had the word look on every page so did not take long to remember.
He was a July baby so young for the year but it did not hold him back in the long run.
Guess I am trying to say that they are all individuals - one method may not be the best for them so try a mixture?


UnaOfStormhold · 06/11/2018 15:10

They're all so different - DS is a similar age and can blend very well but can't write a single letter. I'm sure mine will learn to write and yours will learn to blend! It probably is worth speaking to your teacher about how to manage the fact that you have a different accent as I can see that this could be confusing.


NotUmbongoUnchained · 06/11/2018 19:15

Story time went a lot smoother tonight, Thankyou!

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cabingirl · 06/11/2018 19:23

I felt that my DD had a slower start than I was expecting - I'm British living in the US and they don't start school until 5 years old here, plus I think my accent for vowel sounds was confusing her slightly at home.
Especially 'a' and 'e' sounds!

She met all the expected targets but I was surprised she wasn't progressing faster than she was because both her DF and I are voracious readers.

Didn't push, stayed patient. Then suddenly at the beginning of this year at age 7, it was like a switch was flipped and she started consuming chapter books like water. She read all the Harry Potter books by the end of Summer.

So don't worry - you get some kids who read earlier than others but in general the rest catch up in a couple of years.


Ffiffime · 06/11/2018 20:44

My son is 4.5, he’s in reception.
He knew he alphabet in lower and upper case before the age of 3 and started recognising words. He was 3 years and 5 months when he started pre school and he was having reading books a month later.
He’s now on the 5th stage of the school reading books.
He’s amazing and has started reading stories to his sister which melts me.
DD is almost 3. She’s nowhere near where DS was, but she can recognise a few letters a,c,e,f,h,i,m and o.


reallyanotherone · 06/11/2018 22:32

hat's encouraging really. DS2's just started short chapter reading books and tells me that reading's boring. I bought him Father Christmas's Fake Beard by Terry Pratchett, to see if that would spark an interest. He's read a page and a half of the title story. 😢

Dc1 just wasn’t interested. We had a bit of catch 22 where we all hated bloody biff and chip, but her reading ability wasn’t up to anything else.

I think what kickstarted it was moshi monsters. She had to read to navigate and it has little maths and english quizzes. So websites like that can be a way in, it doesn’t have to be books.

Another thing we found she liked was non-fiction.

Dc2 was different again. Couldn’t really get interested until year 5/6. What sparked them off was watching lemony snicket film/tv series, then we got the box set and as all the characters etc were familiar it was almost a head start.

You have to think outside the box sometimes. I don’t think though that forcing them to learn is productive. My mum sat with my sister and made her read every night, all that happened is she grew to hate reading and has never read a book in her life.


tillytrotter21 · 07/11/2018 00:03

As a parent I am absolutely in the position to judge how my child is being taught thank

One assumes you also tell your child's dentist, doctor and Uncle Tom Cobley how to do their jobs. Being a parent is merely a matter of biology, it doesn't impart omnipotence, many parents are the very last people to know what's best for their child!


PhilomenaButterfly · 07/11/2018 03:38

really I'll see if I can get him into Moshi Monsters. Anything online is difficult as we have free WiFi accessible from the street, but you have to sit in our bedroom window to access it! Also, he'd have to borrow DD's tablet, as his has died, and that could cause friction.

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