Kids need REALLY small books when they start out. I found some a LONG time ago at Lakeshore. I’m talking like 3-5 words/page. Books that repeat a lot. Books that make you want to form them into a shiv and kill yourself while you’re reading them.
They like them. 🙂 Crazy, right?
Then, I make up a chart (because I love charts) with 4 times to read each book. Every time they read the book they get to put a sticker on. On the 4th time they read it by themselves and they graduate to a new book. P takes great pride in holding the book herself and being able to to do it on her own. Those first couple of times through the book are crazy (and we only try these books once a day, most days of the week) difficult. It’s hard for them, and you are filling in a lot of the words. Have them use other strategies to figure out the words. Things like:
1. What’s the first letter
2. Is there a picture that will tell us something
3. This is a rhyming book, it must rhyme with…
4. This is the same word as was back here…
Those are all things we do to read. Our last school had a great reading night where the teachers gave a lot of great strategies.
I try to ask a few questions while we read these tiny books, but I’m more set on reading then comprehension. The 3rd or 4th time through sometimes we find some funny parts. By the 4th time they’re pretty good with knowing what happened and you can discuss it.
A lot of times those books will have a list of words used in the book in the back, and it’s great to go through those words together at that point.
So, the takeaway here is small books. REALLY small books. I’m sad to say I don’t have a set to promote on here as they don’t sell mine anymore. Bob is great, and I’m sure there’s a lot more out there. Tomorrow we’ll talk about bigger books. The other takeaway is doing it a few times in a row. Repetition is key. I used to think that reading a lot of books was important, and it is. But not now.