Monday 3 February 2014

Watching my son learning to read

This is a bit of a follow up to a post that I wrote last September about reading to children, and in particular older children. I have been so fascinated watching Harry as he learns to read that I wanted to document it somehow.

When Harry started school last September, he couldn't recognise all his letters or sounds, and he had no concept at all of putting them together to make words. His first breakthrough came when he started putting the sounds together to make those first simple words, then he jumped forward again when he realised that letters don't always sound the same, and that the sound changes according to their position in the word and the influence of other letters. Now he has reached the stage where he can recognise words without needing to sound them out individually, and he is starting to read more fluently and with expression.

I have an interest in language and linguistics, so I naturally want to encourage his reading, and I do spend time working on it with him. I don't push it, but fortunately he is eager to learn. I love watching him sounding out words that he sees when we are out and about, and he is so pleased with himself.

I have also now started reading proper chapter books to him at bedtime, and his attention span and interest have really surprised me. We've nearly finished the Magic Faraway Tree series of books, which he has really enjoyed. Another book that caught his imagination was Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I try to talk to him a lot about how wonderful reading is, how you can lose yourself in a book and take part in adventures with the characters, how you can learn all about different places in the world and different times in history.

I know that boys don't tend to read as much as girls but I'm trying my best to instill that love of reading in him. I don't read nearly as much as I used to, or as much as I would like to, as I find it a challenge to make the time at the moment. Hopefully that will change as the children get older, because I know that seeing me enjoy reading is the way to inspire them to do the same.

Ladybird vintage book Teaching Reading


  1. That must be so wonderful to watch them learning how to read-it's amazing how quickly they pick it up once they start! Looking forward to doing this with Alex next in the following year when he starts school! x

    1. It has really fascinated me to watch, it's just amazing how quickly they pick it all up


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