Archive for June, 2011

Learning to Read for Real

June 2, 2011 1 comment

Being so old and having had two children, I should have known better than start trying to teach Ella to read so young.  Other than trying to have her learn the phonograms so early, I guess all that I’ve blogged about is legitimate.  But Ella turned three a couple of weeks ago and that is the age I’d been waiting for.  Last week I started breaking down the phonograms and concentrated on Lesson 1.

We hadn’t gone over the phonograms in a long time so she’d forgotten most of the four in the first lesson.  She had even forgotten f, which surprised me.  So we did have to start from the beginning.  I’ve put the phonograms on my phone so that is what I’ve been using to review the phonograms with Ella. We’d go over them multiple times during the day in short bursts.  Of the first eight phonograms in the first two lessons, Ella was really struggling with o and s.  So yesterday I tracked down a screenboard ( and used it to practice those two with her.  It worked even better than I’d hoped!  She learned them and seems to be retaining them.

Once those two were learned I moved on to Lesson 3.  Using the phone, she wasn’t making any progress so today I printed off the flash cards and we used the screenboard again.  After only a couple short sessions she’d learned them as well.  We will have to review them again tomorrow to make sure she is retaining them, but I’m confident she will.  I’ve already printed out the phonograms in Lesson 4 I’m so confident.

Learning the phonograms in isolation is great, but the real test will be if she can blend them together to read words.  I created lists of words that use the phonograms in each lesson so I think I’ll pull the list out for lesson two and see if she can sound out any of those words.  Below is that list:


One of the pluses to using the screenboard is that when Ella traces the phonogram, she is starting to learn handwriting.  She is doing well with following the directions I give her.  I can see Ella thinking about the directions each time so she is getting work with following directions.  That has to be good for her brain.

We are both very excited about this process.  I’ll try to post some video of Ella using the screenboard soon and after she knows more phonograms, I’ll show that off via video.  The only thing that will make this even more exciting is if she is ready to blend the phonograms and start reading!