Questions for teaching Reading etc.

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  • LDyer

    I really enjoy and appreciate Charlotte Mason’s method. I just committed to using SCM with my oldest son – he’s almost 6 and is just a really clever little guy. As soon as I introduced SCM curriculum (right after Pascha/Easter), he caught on SO WELL. It was so satisfying for both of us. He’s probably grade 1 and 2 for most subjects, EXCEPT letters and beginning reading. While he is a phenomenal mathematician and speaker – he struggles with visual letters and alphabet sounds.  My husband was homeschooled, and learned to read when he was 12. Shortly thereafter, he was reading Dostoevsky and P.G. Wodehouse.  I was also homeschooled.  With the “help” of an out-dated phonics program, and my abusive mother, I was scared into reading by the age of 6. I love reading, but it’s always such a rush.  With my own DS, I’ve tried 3 different approaches to teaching phonics and the alphabet.  Perhaps I just balk and freeze when it comes making it a game. Is it really worth it to invest in the SCM Delightful reading curriculum? All the old-time readers, like the Mcguffey readers, are so appealing, but the instructions seem a little obscure. I need something that I wont panic with, and that my son with appreciate as “fun-learning”.  Any tips or advice??

    p.s. I’m sorry if this question was indirect or confusing – I’m not great at forums and networking.


    We use Washington Reads card games to supplement.  It’s phonics, but in a fun way.

    We have used a lot of reading programs. I’m using a thrown together approach now, combining several programs.  Some kids and/or moms don’t do well with phonics.  Praying that you figure out what is best for your son.


    I used McGuffey with my kids.  We used Explode the Code books A through C to teach letter sounds.  These are great since there isn’t a huge amount of writing.  Then I taught blending with letter tiles or a dry erase board.  We built words like cat or mop until they got the concept.  Some of my kids picked up on it instantly and others took longer.  After that, I introduced the McGuffey Eclectic primer.  Each time,  we started with the new words at the top of the page and then they read the page aloud.  I just briefly explain the phonics and don’t go into all the details.  It doesn’t need to be as complicated as some programs make it.

    There’s nothing wrong it’s using a full program if you want more help, but this simple method has worked great for 4 of my kids.


    You might want to look into Reading Lessons Through Literature.  We used it primarily as a spelling program for my ds but as I learned more about it I wished that I had known about it when I was teaching him to read.  It employs the Orton-Gillingham approach to phonics.  It has some game ideas included to help in learning the phonograms.   It may not be what you are looking for but it might just be a good fit. 🙂


    Those look like fun – thanks for the tip!  These are all great suggestions –  Thank you!

    Karen Smith

    From what you describe, it sounds like your son is not ready for learning to read yet. I would set aside the reading lessons for now. After a few months try working with him again and see how it goes. If he is recognizing the letters and the sounds, then continue. If he still struggles with it, set it aside and try again in a few months.

    Our Delightful Reading kits are modeled after Charlotte Mason’s description of how to teach reading. They are gentle, but fun.


    I like Learning Through Sounds (after many, many viewings of LeapFrog’s The Letter Factory) for beginning reading. We use Pathway Readers and Learning through Sounds goes right long with those books.

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