Calvin is Reading

What I meant is reading in English. He has actually started reading Chinese sentences since summer. We’ve slowed down on this since I have to come up with my own lessons. We were using a set called 基础汉字 but I couldn’t find book 4 of the first set.

At the beginning of the school year in September, I knew my goal would be to teach Calvin to read independently and also to write in English. We are not that advanced for Chinese so it will have to wait for a while though he actually wrote 不 (“no” in chinese) in one of his notes of his own accord.

He already knew his alphabet sounds and was starting to read some cvc words so I knew he was ready for the next step which is word families and sight words. We did some word sort (like what the 1st graders were doing), word family wheels (where you change the first letter to get different words of the family) and also sight word mazes. It was somewhat unstructured and we didn’t always get to sit down for formal learning.

For the past two months, I’ve set aside short reading sessions everyday, right before his video time, capitalizing on his eagerness to get started on his favorite hour. Initially, Calvin was reluctant. He told me that he didn’t enjoy it but will do it anyway. I am so proud of him for keeping at it in spite of it. Each session is short (about < 5 mins) so I figured even if it is torturous, it ends quickly. We’ve been using the phonics readers from The Measured Mom. Calvin is now starting set 7 of her books and we are very pleased to see that he has improved tremendously. He can read simple sentences fluently and he has no trouble with consonant blends (e.g.  st-, bl-, cr-) or even the tricky ones like sh- and ch-. He also knows a good handful of sight words now. It’ll still be a while before he can read by himself but I’m glad to see him progressing well.



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