Before having children there were two things that weighed heavy on my mind as far as teaching, 1 potty training, how do you teach your child that “that’s the feeling you have when you have to go pee or pooh?” and 2 teaching my children how to read. Reading is such a wonderful gift. It lets your imagination run wild and you can go into another world with the turn of a few pages. But than there are so many tricky words, so many words that are pronounced completely differently than they look, words that have letters that are completely silent, and particular letters that come together that form a sound and you think, well why didn’t they just use the letter that it sounds like? I guess I am just telling on myself, these are just the issues that I had with reading as a child. I never understood the true phonics of it all.
I always hear, “read to your children, read to your children it will help them learn how to read” and I do, but I have to be honest, I have no clue how reading to my children helps them learn how to read? That still hasn’t connected for me. IJS when I read to them they are just listening and looking at the art work the pictures not the letters or words. When it came time for me to pass the book, my first born looked at me crazy. LOL I worked with him on all of the basics, like the sound of each letter and we slowly began to blend the letters together to form words. Now what? What about words like phone, wrestle, once, none of these words are pronounced how they are spelled.
So my then kindergartener is off to school with the basics of reading, cat, dog, mom, dad, far, hat you get the idea. These books begin to come home for him to read. Very basic, no real phonics attached to the task of learning to read. The way that it was being taught at school was memorization. My child would look at the picture then remember what the words were. Thinking there might be some kind of hidden teaching curb we let him continue this for the school year while we’d work with him at home. This style was not going over well for me but especially not going well for my husband. My husband would get so frustrated when our son would look at the pictures rather than sound the words out. I was praying for some relief because we never want there to be tension while teaching or learning a new task.
We then took a trip to Georgia and stayed with some family. We had some activity time for the kids and my girlfriend Kysah got some paper and books out. Her daughter who is now 5 was reading like a champ! I couldn’t believe my ears because of the words she was reading. I asked Kysah “how does she even know how to pronounce that?” She said, the system that they teach at school is amazing. I then said “well what’s the system? I need, I need!!!!” Kysah then went to one of her drawers and pulled out these papers and showed me how the system worked. I asked her if that style was called something. She said she didn’t know but when the school year begins she will ask the teachers.
I was so amazed I just couldn’t let it go. On our 13 hour drive home from Georgia I searched and googled how to teach my child to read. This is something that I had done before but I now had a basis of what REALLY worked. I then came across http://www.readingbear.org/
I text Kysah and said look what I found… this looks like the style you showed me. Kysah said “that’s it, that’s the site they use!” This site is amazing! Thank you Jesus! Lord knows all of us parents and teachers need the help with teaching. We don’t know it all and every child learns differently. I felt a lot of pressure in teaching my children to read and this has relieved me. I feel like in the 30-45 minutes a day that I have my children do reading bear they have exceled abundantly. Reading Bear is a fun way to learn to read. They teach over 1,200 vocabulary items. Their 50 presentations cover all the main phonics rules. All free!!!! One more time ALL FREE! Take advantage y’all! If you want to teach your child to read, if you need help with sounds, phonics and teaching your child to read this is the perfect site. I recommend this to every parent and teacher. I can’t even explain the progress my children have made in such a short amount of time. The site is not boring either. I have done ABC Mouse and Star Fall with my children, and they are great also but as far as GREAT reading fundamentals reading bear is the go to.
I really want to pass this site on and I hope you can benefit from it like I have. Blessings to you all who go through the teaching/reading journey!