Wow! We've just had the most incredible evening! I've been very slowly introducing Savannah to the SRA DISTAR program for learning how to read. It is based on sounds, rather than on letters since reading is learning how to string sounds together, not letters. Tonight we reached Lesson 7 of 100 and suddenly something just clicked for Savannah. Before I could finish giving her the instructions for certain tasks, she was literally reading the words off of the page! "Well, Mom, she'd say, I already know that word is "man" and it rhymes with "tan.""
She was so excited she ran around the house waving her arms in the air shouting "Sat is spelled "S", "A", "T"!" Then she ran to her chalk board to write the word and decided that since she could spell "Sat" she could also spell "Cat", "Hat", "Fat", "Vat", and "Bat"! Then we spent the rest of the night sounding out and spelling words together. She was so excited she was literally running around and jumping into my arms to give me hugs with her whole body and screaming the spellings of words as loud as she could. She spelled "poop" and "pee" while sitting in the potty as well as at least three dozen other words. When we read her bedtime story tonight she insisted that I stop to let her read some of the words so she did! She read "go", "in", "on", "so", "too", "men", "can" and a few other small words in the bedtime story she picked out. She said she couldn't wait to show her Dad all the new words she could spell and write and read. He will definitely be thrilled and excited for her when he returns from Beijing at the end of August.
AMAZING! I am so amazed tonight. It was incredible watching whatever it was just click inside of that clever little brain of hers and fantastic to see her total thrill and excitement about learning how to spell and read words (and she wrote a handful too!) Wow, I will definitely continue with this program and who knows, by Christmas she might be reading her own level 1 books by herself.
I am so excited for her. When I first learned how to read it was like a new light turned on inside of me and I can already see how excited she is to be able to read on her own. I don't know if I ever had a celebration dance, run, scream fit like she did all over the house today (think Macaulay Culkin in Home Alone!) but I'm sure I experienced the same pure inner joy no matter how I expressed it. Oh, my baby is growing up...
We have been using this book that I found on amazon. It is great and really slowly paced, not too much for kids to do and the lessons take 15-20 minutes each and it's no big deal if (like me!) you skip a few days at a time. Just be sure to read the 27 page intro to yourself and practice once before you start with your child to be sure you do it right the first time with them. I almost didn't and that would've been a big mistake.