Reading - Ideas for child upset seeing lots of words

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Reading - Ideas for child upset seeing lots of words

Unread post by Rebecca »

Bible Reader vs. easy readers (author reply)
Leena wrote:My kids don't like reading the bible reader. I love it and made my older daughter do it, but now I am questioning with my younger. They much prefer reading easy readers. I think because they have pictures and less words on each page. Will we miss something if we switch to easy readers
Author: Rebecca
Date: 1/9/2004

In my opinion much would be lost by not using the Bible Reader. The Bible program, and the timeline, as well as alot of he phonics program are based around it. The stories go along with the phonics lessons, a rule is studied and then put into practice with the Bible story. Amazing how much real Bible knowledge is retained by using this as well. In our church, children are in the sanctuary for the Sunday morning service. On many occasions the sermon would be around something my dd had recently read in her BR, she would smile and whisper, "I read that!"

The Bible Reader can be a challenge, on a few stories we took turns and I would read it to her and then she would read it to me. My dd had to read most story 3x. Once through to learn the words, second time time pick up the main part of the story and then again because by that time it was easy and she felt very good about her reading skills then. By the end of the year she only read it 2x. Incentives go along way toward helping with this, sometimes she would get a chocolate chip for each line she read dropped into a bowl for her to eat at the end of the page. Sometimes a sticker for each time through, or a special color page that I had run off the computer. The reading also got much better toward the end of the year.
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Re: Bible Reader vs. easy readers (author reply)

Unread post by Marie »

Author: Marie Hazell
Date: 1/9/2004

The Bible Reader is valuable both for the content and for practicing the phonics from the previous lesson. It's a great idea to have your child read it more than once. Why not have your child read it once with Mom, and then again when Dad comes home. Kids love to sit on the couch all curled up cosy and show how much they are learning. We have even been known to ask our younger kids to read a story to their stuffed animals. (This only works with some kids!!)

But, that doesn't mean that you should quit giving your kids those wonderful easy readers from the libaray. Some of the easy readers are much simpler than others -- choose some that are quite simple for your child so that he can feel successful and enjoy the process. Go to the library every few weeks and get a new stack of lots of easy readers. Keep them in a corner of your living room. Then let your child choose what he wants to read. Let him read and re-read the same book for a week if he wants to, or let him choose a new book each day.

Ideas for child upset seeing lots of words

Unread post by cbollin »

TammyB wrote:Let me preface my post by saying that I think the first grade material is wonderful. I really do. It is beautifully put together, and from it I have learned much about teaching an early elementary child.

This child has LOVED school since we began a year ago! But after about two weeks of just review, he told me "Mommy, you know I don't like school!" Obviously, I had to STOP and come up with a new game plan.

My frustration lies with what my child considers TOO MANY WORDS TO READ. He is a sweet, cooperative child, so this is not a character issue.

My son can read any cvc word, but he is still sounding them out. Should we move on to the vowel-consonant-silent e words when he is still sounding out cvc words?

There again, if I slow down the phonics lessons, the beauty of the phonics/Bible correlation is lost. I love the way the phonics and the Bible is correlated, and I would love to see him able to read the Bible reader with the correlating Bible story from the TM. I guess I could just rewrite the lessons....Use the white board....It would be a lot more work, but I could do it.

Any thoughts on this? (I hope this all made sense. Trying to think and type with a toddler in the background.....)

{hug}. It's ok to slow it down a bit and take several days to do a lesson. Even if you have to repeat a lesson and/or only do half of the other lessons on that day's schedule.

He needs to be reading comfortably CVC words before moving into the long vowel. I'm not sure if it has to be to the point of not sounding it out -- it has to do more with the first part of 1st grade done at review pace. The Bible reader is part of the phonics lessons and is used starting around day 40 ( I think). He may not be ready for the program.

In addition to any help that we can give over here, I'd like to encourage you to know that you can call the MFW office and ask for some extra ideas to tweak the program. They really will not mind helping you --- even if you are frustrated with the pace or level. I'm certain of this because....

I'm in my 4th year of using MFW and we had a real shaky start to our school year this year. So, I picked up the phone and asked for help. David Hazell talked it through with me, and then it was working way better. It was nice to have real time answers.

And another bit of encouragement. One of the Hazell children was around 8 y.o before he got the hang of learning to read. Once he got it, it was there. smart kid. So, I'm sure their experience can help.

Wish I could offer a bit more help
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Unread post by jennygarcia »

I have to say I personally think teaching a child how to read is the most difficult thing you will ever have to take on. I have 4 children and I am currently teaching my 1st grader and it's fruserating every day.

You need to do what your child likes, bottom line. He's way too young to not like school so if you need to do something else this year, I would do it. This is my 3rd year with MFW and the 1st year I was so frusterated I gave up, but just in 1 years time my boys had grown and it became the best teaching materials I've ever had hold of.

I know you like the bible concepts but here's the deal, learning to read is the most important thing right now in your little guys life. Once he knows how to read every other subject becomes easier, I promise!

Go back to what your child loves, and use MFW as a resource right now. You might even find that a little farther along in the year you can use is full scale, but for now I'd say relax and let time have it's rightful place.

I would suggest you look into learning styles. Maybe phonics needs to be rounded out with other reading methods to best suit your buddy's learning style.

Last thing, please don't be discouraged. As homeschoolers we go out and get what we think is going to be the best curriculum for our families to find out their not quite ready or it doesn't quit work the way we dreamed. That's o.k. It's gonna happen and it's gonna happen to all of us. This is where we learn to trust God and be flexible!.

Be encouraged!
Jenny Garcia
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Unread post by caod »


It takes time for the brain to take it all in and process the information, and it seems the pace may be a bit much for some kids. We are on lesson 38 or so and I would say that it is okay to lengthen out those early lessons easily enough. Even if it takes twice as long, that is a good time to do it.

Anyway, I encourage you. I don't think you are alone. I think the program is worth the tweeking.

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Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2005 6:00 pm

Unread post by Tina »

TammyB: Hi. I also want to encourage you! I have two dc that I have taught to read so far and both were very different! My ds was a lot like what you are describing with your ds. I actually stopped "school" all together with this particular child toward the end of the K program because he just wan't ready. Did you do the K program first before the 1st grade program? They seem to blend so nicely together. For my ds, towards the end of K I could see that he just wasn't grasping the concept of blending the letters to make a word. We just stopped doing the material and we did other things for the rest of the K year.

When we started what would have been his 1st grade year, we picked up where we left of with K and continued on. We did 12 weeks of K material in his 1st grade year and then went right into 1st grade. (he was six years old at the time) Reading was still challenging for him.

We did phonics games, flashcards, hopping on blends, blend ladders, anything to make it "fun". In the first grade curriculum there should be some game ideas that you can play to help with the phonics part.

I guess what I'm trying to say after this long story is that do it when he is ready. I remember times when my ds just couldn't read the bible reader, and I would take twice the time on one lesson. That's okay. Even at the end of his first grade year, he was not reading the bible reader with ease, it took him time to be able to do that. He did not "pick up and fly" with reading until well into his second grade year and that's when I saw that little light bulb turn on and he "got it". The middle of second grade is when he really started to read with confidence. He is in third grade now and he can read well. We still even need some phonics reinforcement, but he does very well and that took time and work for him.

It's okay to slow things down for him.
Tina, homeschooling mother of Laura (1996), Jacob (1998) and Tucker (2003) In MO
"One of the greatest blessings of heaven is the appreciation of heaven on earth. He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose."--JIM ELLIOT
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Unread post by Mom2MnS »

Hi :) I just want to thank all of you who contributed to this thread... it is so encouraging to read about the thoughtful and so very caring ways you are addressing the challenges that come. What a blessing :)
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Unread post by Lucy »


First of all I think that the first grade program assumes that a child can comfortabley read CVC words without having to sound them out. It sounds like he may just need a little more time praticing those and once his brain makes that connection he will probably take off in whatever program he is in. I think you are doing the right thing to stop and reassess and do something different. I agree that you may find later in the year he could do MFW.

Do not worry about handwriting. Boys tend to have more of a struggle here and so making the transition is even harder. My son has transitioned but it is still a stuggle for him. He is 11.

To you and to any others when I taught my daughter to read(MFW did not exist) when we would come to a page with many words to read I would cover up all but the first line and as she would read a line I would move the paper down. She was overwhelmed by all the words on the page to begin with. I think it sounds like for your son it is also the difficulty in reading but the thought of having to read all of them can be too much for many kids. So if you go back to it at sometime you may want to try that.

Do be encouraged! Each year we seem to have some area that has to be worked out. Sometimes it is curriculum and sometimes it is other factors so please know you are not alone.

God has made you to be your sons mother and no other. He will give you what you need to meet his needs and to help him to be successful." He who has called you is faithful and He will do it. "1Thess5:21

Last edited by Lucy on Sat Sep 16, 2006 4:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.
wife to Lee and mom to Twila 18 (girl) and Noel 16(boy). Happy MFW user since 2002.
Julie in MN
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Learning to read

Unread post by Julie in MN »

To all you wonderful ladies who are teaching your children to read, I just want to say that I admire you. You are doing a great thing for your kids in the supportive home environment.

And I want to encourage you that I did not start my oldest son in (public) kindergarten until he was 6 years 2 months old. He is now in college and doing very well. Waiting on the abstract learning has done him no harm :o)

And even if your child is not learning to read at the moment, he can still be learning learning learning!
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002+)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs
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Unread post by tkbbrl6 »


I need to preface my post with I haven't used MFW first to teach reading - I didn't know about it with my two middles that I hs but will be using it in the future when youngest is ready. But some ideas that we did - in particular with our middle ds who sounds a little like your ds.

Too many words on a page threw him for a loop and he'd get frustrated just looking at the page without even trying to read the words. So here are some things I did:

chalkboard - I'd write one word at a time - he'd trace it with his finger saying the sound of the letters to blend the word together then run his finger under the whole word and say the word. This works well for learning to spell as well - but needs to be traced three times saying the letter or sound. Along the same lines - we wrote words in pudding, finger paint, sidewalk chalk, bathtub paint during bath time, shaving cream, cooked spaghetti, etc.

reading rods or letter magnets - we'd build the words and then he'd read them - again we used this for spelling as well bec ds doesn't do writing very well.

Index cards - write the individual words on index cards in larger print - this made a huge difference for ds - it's not a problem with vision being poor but for some kids they need larger print at this age. We would even build sentences and whole paragraphs by writing individual words on the index cards. Then once he was comfortable with reading the sentences on index cards I'd print them off on the computer in larger print.

Computer - re-type the words in larger print - make a word window where the only thing showing is one word at a time and then move to one line at a time. Also there are some computer programs that can be beneficial to helping dc get reading down (; are a couple I can remember off the top of my head and my ds loved Earrobics)

TIME - you might find that if you put the material away for a few weeks or months and work on "fun" ways to improve reading and other things then pick it back up things might work better when he's had either a little more time to mature or just simply a little more work on the basics of reading.
Wife to dh for 13 years
Mom to ds (19) Sophmore at USC; dd(11) Level 7 USAG gymnast; ds(9) Green belt in Karate; ds (4)Still waiting for a pet buffalo or lion
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Unread post by LizCT »

On the topic of MFW 1st - don't forget to play the reading games in the teacher's manual - along with the math games - my girls love the games! Take the time to have some fun - you can include kids of other ages in those games and it is even more fun for everyone!

I also want to second the suggestion to cover all but the words on one line at a time - this really helped when my dd (now almost 7) was younger and we were starting the "learning to read" process.

Now that we are into the Bible Reader part of MFW 1st, my dd is curling up with the Bible Reader to read ahead - she wouldn't have done that one year ago. It's worth it to me to be using this now (instead of a year ago) just so she is truly ready to read and enjoy the Bible Reader - she can read the stories, and so she knows that Bible stories are not too difficult for her! That is so precious.

Also, someone said they would miss having a Proverb a week - there are lots of Proverbs you could add in between the lessons for memorization if you want to keep on that schedule for memory work - don't let that dissuade you from taking the time your child needs.

That's all from me!

Liz in CT
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Unread post by randjj1 »

I don't know if this helps or not, but my son was at the point that yours it at when we finished MFWK this summer. He could sound out any short vowel word, but he had to sound out every word. He's a sweet child like yours, but would get frustrated with the big list of words that he had to sound out. We used phonics readers, but he still was sounding out every word (even if he just sounded it out).

For my son, "memorizing" a few words helped him realize that once he decoded the word with his phonics skills, he could remember the whole word and not have to sound it out again. His reading is definitely improving since it clicked that he didn't have to keep sounding out the word after he's decoded it once.

I have the curriculum for MFW 1st, but due to some medical issues (me), he is in 1st grade at public school this year. Hopefully we can homeschool again next year.

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