Guest Blog: Early Reading!

My sweet S.I.L. graciously offered to share some wisdom today- she is a darling mom of a 7-year-old boy, 4-year-old boy and 3-month-old baby girl! I love getting ideas from other moms- I know you will too! Thanks Britt! 

Early Reading Tools: Guest Blog by Brittany
Since my favorite mom-blogger is very busy preparing for the arrival of another beautiful niece of mine, I offered to write a guest blog about some of my favorite tools to help with phonics and reading.  
If you have a preschooler and have not discovered www.starfall.com, I encourage you to check it out.  The site introduces little hands to letter sounds, while allowing them to be exposed to using the keyboard and mouse.  Some kiddos (like mine) may find it challenging to use the mouse now that they’ve been introduced to touch devices, like smart phones and tablets.  The songs and videos are so catchy and help them remember helpful rules, like the role of the silent e, and who talks when a and e take a walk.  The interactive nature of the site keeps them entertained and learning at the same time. May be helpful as you try to get some things done this holiday season!
Bob Books are another incredible tool for early readers.  Each book focuses on a letter sound and uses repetition of short words using this sound. For instance, one book uses bag, rag and tag.  Starting with this group of books allows early readers to experience that great feeling of accomplishment as the get to repeat and master one skill at a time. Check them out at http://www.bobbooks.com.
Kids love to be active!  And there is no better way for learning than through activity, especially if you have boys! Some great tricks that we’ve used to keep letter and sounds fun are to use word blocks or flash cards and create games that keep them moving. One game that works for us is to put out the cards in the middle of the floor and then call out letters or sounds to be found.  Another is to line them up in a line and have them take different steps or animal walks to get from one letter to another. 
Every child has their own path and timeline to master reading and I hope these tools help to keep the learning fun on your journey to create little readers.
I’m sure you could dedicate post after post to great books, but I have to share a favorite in our house is The Pout-Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen.  There is a sweet song that a dad/musician has posted online that puts the book to song. You have to check it out. http://truesongwriter.blogspot.com/2010/07/pout-pout-fish-song.html

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