Reading - Visual learners

God's Creation From A to Z: A Complete Kindergarten Curriculum
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Jenn in NC
Posts: 144
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2006 2:00 pm

Reading - Visual learners

Unread post by Jenn in NC » Mon Mar 17, 2008 11:27 am

Forgets quickly, need extra ideas!
ustasmom wrote:This is my 5th child to teach to read. He is a totally different learner. He writes better in K than anybody else did, but he is such a visual learner. He won't write a letter without actually looking at it first.

He knows the letter sounds, but most times cannot remember the letter names. We can get halfway through a worksheet of reading words, and then his brain leaves the building. He doesn't know a sound, a letter name, nothing.

If we break for a week or two, we backslide so much. So, we are almost done with MFW K and I have to keep going, but I don't know if he will be able to get through MFW 1st without daily meltdowns. Help!!
I am sure you will get lots of good advice from seasoned users of the K program. I have only been through it one time so I don't know how much I can offer you, but I do have a couple of questions that popped in my mind as I was reading your post.

First, I was wondering how old your son is?

And secondly I wondered if you could break your teaching time up into a couple of different sessions a day... would that help?
mommy to four boys & two girls... and another boy on the way :)
completed K, 1st, ADV, ECC, CTG and RTR
2009--2010 Enjoying Exploration to 1850

Susan on the Space Coast
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2004 10:02 am
Location: Palm Bay, Florida

Oh the boys God gave us!

Unread post by Susan on the Space Coast » Mon Mar 17, 2008 12:15 pm

I have a son, too. He was so different than my 2 girls going thru MFWK!

Jenn's suggestion about small breaks during the day is good. Sometimes I'd send my son to check the mail, or run around the outside of the house, just to get his head cleared (and give me a break). Remember our little guys are wired differently and they need to spend some of that energy!

I was so glad that Marie had scheduled tactile learning activities too. We liked the salt on a pizza pan and the hide and seek index cards (I think that was suggested in MFW1st.) It was just different ways to get the learning done.

My son is now a 4th grader, and still can't sit still for long periods, but MFW has great suggestions how to keep him listening to long passages of history read aloud. He's improving, too.

But enough about my son. I would suggest that you continue to find "books" that he can read and continue to practice that through the summer. We also turned on the captions to the t.v. programs, so they could read the words they were hearing--it keeps the volume down on the tv, too.

If you find that next year in 1st is too taxing, take a break. We put it on the shelf for a couple of weeks and just reviewed what he was already comfortable with.

I'm sure you'll get more response.
Susan
wife to Tim (22 yrs.), mommy to Emily (17, graduate), Daniel (15), and Megan (13)
Have taught MFWK through 1850-MT; High School

KimberlyND
Posts: 67
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2008 4:55 pm
Location: United States

Unread post by KimberlyND » Mon Mar 17, 2008 1:13 pm

I empathize with you!! My son (6yr-MFW-1) is a visual learner, forgets his sounds quickly, and about drove me crazy while he was/is learning to read! I don't really know what advice I can give you other than what was already given and to just keep on. My son did get better although I still have to help him with his vowel sounds. As time goes on he remembers more and more.

The thing that really helped me to make it through his daily reading times without loosing it was to color while he was reading. I had some coloring books I got on vacation that had a story about the places we visited. While he read I could look ahead and know what word he was on and keep myself occupied by coloring. It helped me be patient, loving, and kind.

May God be with you and direct you.

Kimberly

Mommyto2
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Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2007 8:14 am

Unread post by Mommyto2 » Mon Mar 17, 2008 2:03 pm

Some may completely disagree but my ds learned to read more by playing computer games than by anyone working with him one-on-one. He just couldn't hold his attention at the time. He is now almost 9 and is a great reader. He missed much of the phonics rules so we are going back to cement that knowledge but there was just no other way at the time.

In public school he got labeled as a sight reader. In other words he would memorize each word he read which meant that if he already had seen the word a few times then he would know it for next time but if he hadn't, he couldn't sound it out. We have worked through that this past year.

Oh, one more thing. My son learned to spell 3 and 4 letter words, then he learned to read them, if that makes sense.

All this to say, try a different medium.

We really liked Reader Rabbit and Jump Start. I would just let him play and figure it out on his own. He learned much better than me helping.

Hope this helps. Don't give up. You or he can do it. Also, remember some boys just can't grasp reading until age 7 or 8.

Hugs to you.

Brenda
mom to ds 8 and dd 5

RachelT
Posts: 352
Joined: Thu Aug 03, 2006 2:45 pm

Unread post by RachelT » Mon Mar 17, 2008 2:54 pm

Hello!
He knows the letter sounds, but most times cannot remember the letter names. We can get halfway through a worksheet of reading words, and then his brain leaves the building. He doesn't know a sound, a letter name, nothing.
First, I think that if he can recall all of the letter sounds, then, that is the most difficult part! Learning or reviewing the letter names can be fun with games like concentration, or working with the textured letters and playing some of the games in the TM. We have a set of foam alphabet letters that hook together like a puzzle and I have them out on the floor and we play hopping games with the sounds and their letter names. Letter BINGO is fun, too.

For the reading you are talking about, I am guessing that you are meaning the pages like the word list page or the story pages. Both of my children did not like doing the entire word list page in one sitting, sometimes breaking that particular page up has helped us.

I would say that if you are almost done with K - perservere! And then take a nice, long break! Maybe just play games like those I mentioned already and do lots of reading aloud and Bob books or reviewing the K story pages. In time, I am sure he will be ready for 1st grade. It was a jump from K for my ds this year, but it really is making him a reader!

Rachel
Rachel, wife to Doug ~ 1995, mom to J (17) and B (15)
MFW K (twice), 1st (twice), Adv., ECC, & CtG 2006-2010,
Classical Conversations 2010-2016,
ECC/AHL 2016-17, eclectic 2017-18, WHL & US1 2018-19

http://rachelsreflections-rachelt.blogspot.com/

Lucy
Posts: 442
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2004 9:37 am

Unread post by Lucy » Tue Mar 18, 2008 11:17 am

Hi,

Please give the office a call to help you sort through some other options. This will not be a first for them.

I would not concetrate on learning the letter names right now. It is more important at this stage that he learn the sounds. He can learn the names later and it will be easy for him. It can be very confusing for some kids to have 2 "names" for a letter. Essentially that is what happens when we introduce sounds and then later we find that one letter has more than just 2 "names" but multiple sounds so right now just focus on sounds. Also you can play sound bingo instead of naming the letter and it works to help review the sounds just as well. Any game that will help reinforce the sounds of the letters will be good.

Another idea is that when he writes a sound have him say the sound as he writes it. You can do this with air writing and salt writing. When air writing make sure he is using very large motor movements as well. You may even have him walk in the shape as he says it. Something about movement and repeating a sound or even fact can help the brain to retain it.

Give the office a call as they will also be able to give you some advice and encouragement. He will read it just may take a little bit longer.

Lucy
wife to Lee and mom to Twila 18 (girl) and Noel 16(boy). Happy MFW user since 2002.

caod
Posts: 52
Joined: Sun Jun 04, 2006 8:29 pm

Unread post by caod » Tue Mar 18, 2008 9:47 pm

Hey,

My dd is definitely a visual learner. She is older than your son (7 and 1/2) and is my "late bloomer". She is reading but not that great and doesn't like it. I see her making steady progress however. We started using a program called All About Spelling. Granted it is a spelling program but it sure has helped her reading.

We "write" words on our magnetic board with the tiles that come with the program. The visual image combined with the sound has been hugely beneficial for her. Then we write the words every other day or so. She seems to like this process and the benefit has been in her reading. I don't really care about her spelling at this point.

Connie

RachelT
Posts: 352
Joined: Thu Aug 03, 2006 2:45 pm

Unread post by RachelT » Thu Mar 20, 2008 10:41 pm

Hi! I just thought of something else for you to look into. I've used a book from our local library called "Phonics Pathways" several times. I just checked it out again because my ds just finished the blue workbook in 1st grade, but I think besides reading real books (which is great!), we still need a way to go back and review some specific rules and blends. You say your child is a visual learner, so this book might help him. You can start where your child is comfortable and work your way through more lessons. It goes through each letter of the alphabet with the short vowels, very much like our blend ladder pages in MFW K. But, it has it written out for the student to see, maybe that would help! Here is an example:
"a m-a ma"
e m-e me"

We've also used a fun game from this book called the "short vowel shuffle" sometimes instead of the short vowel song. We have learned so much from the MFW phonics, but we are just going to use this book as another way of reinforcing and practice. It might be something for you to try.

Rachel
Rachel, wife to Doug ~ 1995, mom to J (17) and B (15)
MFW K (twice), 1st (twice), Adv., ECC, & CtG 2006-2010,
Classical Conversations 2010-2016,
ECC/AHL 2016-17, eclectic 2017-18, WHL & US1 2018-19

http://rachelsreflections-rachelt.blogspot.com/

gratitude
Posts: 677
Joined: Mon May 10, 2010 11:50 am

Reading Question for K'er

Unread post by gratitude » Wed Nov 03, 2010 7:47 pm

momem3 wrote:I think my daughter is an extremely visual learner. She despises sounding words out and does ok-ish when we do the word list and I just tell her the words and then ask her to point to "dot" or whatever. How do I help this girl? My DS sounds everything out (almost too many words still). Can a person learn how to read just by looking at words? It has been so long since I learned to read that I feel at a loss.

Also, any help from other "teaching parents" who have also had this sort of kid. She doesn't like the songs, she refuses to say the sounds of words (even though she knows almost all of the ones we do when I do the sound and she just has to point to the letter), she is just not auditory. I want to have some tools in my arsenal for this visual girl.

TIA,
Emily
If I am understanding the situation correctly there are a few points to think about that I have learned.

1. Phonics is much more about spelling than reading. It helps kids to learn to read, but the main thing it does it teach spelling. Without phonics it is very difficult to be a good speller. It can also hinder vocabulary development in the teen years (This knowledge is from my own experience of learning to read by sight prior to school).

2. Does she know her individual letter sounds and blends? If she isn't willing to say the sounds is it because she doesn't know how to, or because she really doesn't want to. If she doesn't know how to, I think it is worth teaching her individual letter sounds. If she really doesn't want to; well... I am sure every parent on here has different methods for motivating the reluctant student. Mine are willing this year. Praise the Lord! When they weren't willing, I usually laid the work aside for two months (or more) until it was a better time to do the work. This meant my older son didn't do phonics until age 6, when he was mature enough to be willing to do the work.

I thought I would share my thoughts/ experience on phonics:
Both of my kids started reading some words by sight early on and learned individual letter sounds and letter recognition without curriculum. However, I have still insisted that when they have reached a mature enough age to sit and do the work to learn their blends, be able to sound out words with individual letters, and to go through the curriculum for phonics. So how you may ask? Well with my ds5 I ask him to sound it out and he does. He doesn't like it, but he is willing this year to do it. I also let it go if he sounds out one or two words and reads the rest by sight. There are days though where he sounds out every single word, like he did today. He is learning phonics, and that is the important part.

Blessings! :)
Last edited by gratitude on Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:28 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Wendy B.
Posts: 127
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:27 pm

Re: Reading Question for K'er

Unread post by Wendy B. » Thu Nov 04, 2010 8:48 am

momem3 wrote:She despises sounding words out and does ok-ish when we do the word list and I just tell her the words and then ask her to point to "dot" or whatever. ...... She doesn't like the songs, she refuses to say the sounds of words (even though she knows almost all of the ones we do when I do the sound and she just has to point to the letter), she is just not auditory.
I could have written this post about my current 5yo.

My primary goal for K is for the child to develop good school habits. I want to work on attentiveness, first time obedience, and all the other habits that I want in place for future years. Reading is a secondary goal and I have had K'ers who have learned to read during their K year and K'ers who have not learned to read. My K'ers who developed good habits (usually because I made it a priority) even if they did not learn to read during their K year have been a joy to continue hsing. My K'ers who have not developed good habits, even if they did learn to read during their K year, were a constant struggle throughout their hsing years.

With my current 5yo, who is doing almost the exact same behaviors as your, I have decided that she is capable but just unwilling to cooperate with doing MFW K. Some things I could easily change. Instead of singing the songs, we could review the material with flashcards. So we made that adjustment. Once she realized that she is going to review the materials regardless of her attitude, she decided that singing the songs was preferred to flashcards. Now she is willing to sing the songs and does it with a pretty good attitude.

Blending was a stumbling block for her as well. You can't rush a child through blending so I felt some of her behaviors was due to frustration with the skill of blending. I stopped moving forward with the curriculum and spent several weeks focusing on blending. She needed a little extra time developing this skill and now we are moving forward with the curriculum with a better attitude.

I guess my point is that I just didn't immediately think that her issues were related to a conflict in learning style and MFW K.

As a contrast, my current 8yo did not learn to blend or read during his K year. He had some significant speech motor issues and was doing intense speech therapy work during that year. Each time we tried to work on blending , his speech would revert back to the patterns that he was working so hard to overcome. So as a 5yo, he was willing but unable to move forward with reading. We could work on developing good habit; we just were not able to work on phonics. He needed time to work on other issues before working on reading.

HTH
Wendy B.
Graduated ds '08 & dd '09
Homeschooling ds 11 & dd 8 using RtR
completed: MFW 1, ADV, ECC & CtG.

Wendy B.
Posts: 127
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:27 pm

Re: Reading Question for K'er

Unread post by Wendy B. » Thu Nov 04, 2010 11:06 am

Just wanted to add..

Even if you went with a strictly visual phonics program, she would still need to learn how to blend.

I don't have a link, but Look-say or memorizing list of words will get most kids to about a 3rd or 4th grade reading level then they will hit a wall unless they are able to break the code themselves. Some will be able to do this and others will need some sort of remedial phonics. Phonics also will help with long term spelling.
Wendy B.
Graduated ds '08 & dd '09
Homeschooling ds 11 & dd 8 using RtR
completed: MFW 1, ADV, ECC & CtG.

gratitude
Posts: 677
Joined: Mon May 10, 2010 11:50 am

Re: Reading Question for K'er

Unread post by gratitude » Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:24 pm

Wendy though has some great answers and insights for you. I just wanted to add, after some thought the following:

For us we hope that home schooling will allow us the time to focus on nurturing our children's strengths, personalities, talents, and the person God created them to be.

Next to the above list that we want to strengthen though is what I call the 'chore' list. The weaknesses that they have to do. Or the subjects we must do, easy or hard. The subjects they need to learn, even if it is a weakness. Phonics for me falls on this list. If it is easy for them great, but if it is a chore for them we still have to do it.

For your dd, if she is struggling, it is worth taking it slower. Or taking a break and coming back to it in 4 -5 weeks. Learning styles aside, phonics is one of those where the lesson is learning to say letter sounds and sounding out words. For some kids this will be very easy, and for others it will be harder.

Julie in MN
Posts: 2928
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Re: Reading Question for K'er

Unread post by Julie in MN » Thu Nov 04, 2010 4:56 pm

Is this child willing to write much? Is there some way that she is willing to work on her skills?

When my child balks at an activity, I usually give my little speech about how you must do "something" with the material, in order to learn it, because that's how the brain works. I can be flexible about what we do to learn, but we must do something. At a young age, my little speech would go something like this:
  • You know how your brain can remember little things for a little while? You can remember that you have two more steps to walk up to the door, or that you have brushed your bottom teeth but not the top? Then you forget those things. Your brain decides that you only used that information once and aren't using it any more, so you don't need to find it any more.

    Well, if you want to learn something and really remember it, you have to tell your brain that this isn't just the steps to the back door; this is important. You do that by using it over and over, trying to find it again in you brain right away. You can read it, write it, make it, talk about it, or do anything you want with it. But doing it again is when your brain says, "Oh, that's important! I need to really keep that!" So, your brain builds a really strong connection to that spot in your head.

    We have to learn something by doing it more than once, because that's the way the brain works. If you don't like singing it and saying it, then what can we do instead?
I do allow my child to have input, and sometimes the child has great ideas that I haven't thought of. Or sometimes my child can tell me how he's already learned something in other ways and doesn't need the extra review (although I haven't yet accepted my child's claim that he practiced reading on a computer game or reading text messages from his friends...).

And if she is young, well, I'm all for waiting until she's older -- I'm a big fan of better-late-than early :o)
Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

momem3
Posts: 14
Joined: Tue Jul 20, 2010 11:20 pm

Re: Reading Question for K'er

Unread post by momem3 » Mon Nov 08, 2010 9:56 am

Thanks everyone! Your suggestions are great and I will incorporate them.

We took Friday as just a "letter sounds" day and reviewed every letter up to this point. I did all the activities for an entire week for each letter (not the writing stuff...she doesn't mind it) that involves the sounds of the letter. She did great! I think I just need to take the time to review things. We still sing the songs...she does pretty well with the A-a-apple song and the Short Vowel Song. She doesn't enjoy the hymns. I should say, she doesn't like Mommy singing the hymns. ;) I'm not that great of a singer.

I think if we keep reviewing every couple of weeks, she'll do just fine. She tends to be the sort of kid who has to observe a million times and then has mastered the skill. She did this with rolling over, crawling, walking, etc. I feel pretty confident she will be the same with school. She is just so different from big brother. I also have the added issue that her younger sister is just 1 year younger and is pretty advanced. She knows all her letters, can count to the teens, recognizes her numbers, knows many letter sounds, etc. This creates some tension in the house when older sister realizes younger sister is doing either the same thing or more. Sorry, got off topic.

Thanks again!
Emily
Emily
mom & teacher to:
DS - 8yo, ECC
DD - 7yo, ECC and activities through neurodevelopmentalist
DD - 6yo, ECC and MFW 1st
DS - 3yo, he is He-Man and he does 'have the power'!

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