• Joy Hardin

Ease into Reading: Fun Baby Steps to Help Your Child Learn to Read.

When we decided to homeschool our daughter, the main thing I dreaded was teaching her how to read. It was a daunting task, and to be honest it still is. Thankfully I've found some easy learn to read activities to ease into the process. The fact that these learn to read activities are broken down into baby steps help make these learn to read activities fun.

As I started to work with my daughter, I approached teaching her to read the same way I usually tackle any project - I went to Pinterest. I browsed for hours and pinned hundreds of pins. This just left me feeling overwhelmed. I was a junior high teacher for over seven years, but frankly I was completely in the dark about where to start. Eventually I found a few mentions of two books - The Reading Lesson: Teach Your CHild to Read in 20 Easy Lessons and Teach Your Toddler to Read Through Play: A Detailed Account with Over 130 Games/Activities, Tips, and Resources that intrigued me and gave me a glimmer of hope. Usually I like to buy the actual book, but I had some Kindle credit so I purchased the ebook version of both. Using these two books together was a lifesaver! Utilizing the books as well as some simple activities has made this process of teaching my daughter to read a little easier.

Learn to Read Activities

While the books have great pictures and come with excellent diagrams/worksheets, I have the Kindle version so I created my own flashcards for a lot of the activities. I also have pressed a few of Carrie's many dry erase boards into service. She loves them so it also serves as a motivator to sit down and work. One of the suggestions was breaking up the alphabet into chunks and making sure your child knows the sounds for those words. I enjoyed how they gave examples of words to use as well as plenty of practice.

The other suggestion that I appreciated was to ensure that your child knew the difference between letters, words, and sentences. Those are definitely the building blocks that are needed and I hadn't considered that previously.

One of the issues has been my daughter's lack of attention span. She's five and she's autistic so we have had to get creative at times. One of the things we discovered was using games. Sometimes we get to use them as intended and others we have to manipulate to fit our needs. One that we actually utilize both as intended and with some changes is The Very Hungry Caterpillar: Spin and Seek ABC Game. It has allowed us to work on both sounding out letters and helping with other issues that we sometimes struggle with - for example counting.

Learning to read activities are just like anything else - you have to find what works for you and your child. A program/activity can be highly rated but if it is not going to translate to you and your child's individual needs, it is just a waste of time and money. If you child isn't ready to read yet. Here are two letter recognition activities: F is for Fart and Grocery Store Preschool Lessons

So Mommas (and Daddies), please share what you've done to help your child learn to read. I'm sure there are plenty of parents who were overwhelmed like me.

Joy Hardin is a former junior high teacher, but now is homeschooling her daughter, Carrie. Hardin has discovered that almost ten years in the classroom can't prepare you for working with your own child. Carrie is five and has recently been diagnosed with Autism so there are daily struggles, but it makes the breakthroughs even sweeter.

Carrie has inspired Joy to also write children's books. The first will be out soon, Carrie Can't Choose a Costume and is the first of the Choosy Carrie books.

Joy blogs at Finding Joy Publishing, http://www.findingjoy19.com

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