OK, so you can all sit back and have a laugh at my expense now. After thinking long and hard about the comments readers left on my previous post (and lying awake all night wondering whether I’m a complete idiot or just a partial one) I took another look at Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons. You see, I haven’t actually looked at it in four years, so I thought maybe I’d better do that. It turns out that I did misremember some of it. It’s not quite what I thought it was. (Yes, we really did use it. I just forgot.)
The impression that it left me with when we used it was that it was something of a phonics shortcut. After reassessing it, I still think that it’s a shortcut, and it’s definitely not a complete phonics program. However, I’m forced to admit that my last post was a little bit off. Maybe even way off. I think 100 Easy Lessons can actually be a really good quick start to reading.
I sat down with David today and had him read aloud to me. Whole pages, whole words, single syllables, nonsense words. Guess what? No problems. The child reads just as well as his mother. (Chances are he thinks better than his mother, too, but let’s not talk about that right now. I want to talk about something more comfortable, like waterboarding.)
Asking him to spell aloud yielded a few more mistakes than I would like, considering how hard we’ve worked on spelling, but he did alright with that, too. Writing? Better, actually, than it was at the beginning of the summer. Still some reversals (k is hard, but he isn’t getting b and d backwards anymore!), but I’m pleased. He hasn’t picked up a pencil since May, so I think it’s because he has matured enough to do a little bit better. This is all very encouraging!
So, I was (probably) wrong. Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons works just fine, thanks.
In spite of my apparent misunderstanding of the cause of the problem, I will be continuing with basically the plan I already had. My diagnosis was wrong, but the prescription is still the same. I suspect that the only thing David needs in order to get better in spelling is still more phonics. Thankfully, I already have the spelling curriculum that I think he needs, so I don’t have to go looking for something else that will suit us. A homeschooling mom I trust once told me not to worry about spelling until 3rd grade anyway, so I may just be expecting too much.
So there you have it. Sometimes I overthink things, and sometimes I think things all wrong. That’s why I write blog posts. To help me think. What? You thought this blog was here so I could teach you something? Ha! No. I’m not one of those homeschool bloggers who actually know what they’re doing. Never claimed to be. This blog is here so you people can save me from myself, and I thank you, from the bottom of my wormy little heart, for your input. Have a happy weekend!
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