Friday, October 07, 2016

What we're reading

It seems nearly everyone in the house is carrying around a book to read these days. It's a beautiful sight. So what is engaging everyone?

G. and L. are really starting to take off in their reading. They are not carrying books around so much as they are realizing that words surround them in their world and that they can read them. Is there anything more exciting than watching a child realize that the world of words has opened to them? They both continue to love the graded readers that were passed down to me. They are perfect for G. and L. They love the idea of reading a whole 'book' at once, and because they are graded, there is usually only one new word or sound in each one, lessening their frustration. (Trust me when I say I'm all about keeping those girls' frustration at a minimum.) Plus, L. just got to read the story about the pig and the ham, which cracks me up.

(Yes, I know seven and second grade seems late for a child to start reading. I'm good with it. More than good, in fact. They have decided when they are ready to handle reading, and they are. Instead of forcing them to try to do something they are not ready for, thus making them feel as though they are stupid, we have two girls who think they are the best readers in the world and cannot wait to sound out the next word. They also are proof of the adage that a child is not ready to really do academics if they have not lost any teeth. G. just lost her very first tooth a few days ago. Children mature both physically, emotionally, and intellectually at very different rates.)

Y. has finished the three workbooks introducing each consonant that I insisted that she work through. She was not terribly happy with me because she wanted to read RIGHT NOW! But because of switching languages, she was still not 100% on knowing what sound each letter made, but more importantly, she did not always hear the difference. I used those introductory books to spend some time on hearing the different sounds. We finished them on Wednesday and she was beyond excited to start sounding out words on Thursday. We started with short 'a' words, which she got right away. The trouble is this is a child who wants to know all the things right away. I think she got it in her head that with my one small reading lesson on Thursday, that she knew all there was to know about reading. Thus, she insisted I find an easy reader book (and a real book with a cover, the graded readers did not cut it), that she could then read. It was a let down to discover that there are more words out there than short 'a' words and more phonics rules than just knowing the consonant sounds. But she still insists on carrying around Hop on Pop and trying to read the words without any help.

H., with her current success with The Cat in the Hat, has been carrying around Fox in Socks. The absolutely terrific thing about this is that she can read it. And has been, all on her own. Given the reading demands (and they are most definitely demands) of the previous three children, having H. be able to do this on her own is fantastic.

K. has really blossomed and is in the middle of Ribsy, the first chapter book he has really tackled on his own. For school, because he is pretty much reading, but not quite as fluently as I would like, he has been reading Hairy Hezekiah, a Dick King-Smith book, to me. This has given him the confidence to branch out on his own. Every five minutes or so, he comes to me to show me how much more he has read. I would be even more thrilled if he was so engrossed in the story that he didn't think about coming to show me, but I'll take it as a start.

D., who is rarely without a book (or two or three) in his hand, is engrossed in the new Magnus Chase book (by Rick Riordan) that just came out. It was his birthday present all the way back in June and he has waited until this week to receive it. I wouldn't be surprised if he finishes it today at some point.

TM has also been on a reading jag. For reluctant readers, it is sometimes about finding the right book. For TM, one of these books is Hattie Big Sky. We listened to it on one of our trips to Arizona and he loved it. This fall I finally broke down and bought him his own copy which he spent the past week reading. He is now in the middle of the sequel.

P. has not been doing much reading for fun because she has been involved in a class which involves a lot of required reading. She has now read Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (different versions) twice this fall, plus extra reading material. P. is really not terribly excited about reading yet another version later. She would prefer to be able to do some more exciting reading.

I am happily in the middle of Vita Brevis, the seventh book in the Medicus series by Ruth Downie. It is as good as the others and I was so excited when a friend told me a new one was out. That's the hard part of finding a good series that an author is still writing... remembering to look for any new books so I don't miss them.
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1 comment:

Donna said...

Thanks (or not) for the heads up on the Medicus series. I read the initial book some time ago but did not know it was now a series. I liked it very much. I'll add it to my Amazon wishlist and maybe Santa will send me one or two.

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