I am writing this progress report mostly for friends and family who are concerned about my kids' education... especially those who are themselves teachers.
As you know we are learning to read with phonics, and not by sight. But, words become memorized as we progress. I printed off this sight words sheet about 6 weeks ago - just to keep myself on track. I wanted to make sure that Rebecca was learning the most common words. Today she read every word except for "you" and "said." She has not yet learned the sounds for /ou/ or /ai/.
So, I decided to look at the Sight Words List 2, and she knows most of these too. (Again, she knows them because she learned them phonetically. She memorized them from frequent reading). She is still unsure about /oo/ (in "look"), the many uses of the end e (as in "some" and "have"), and /ou/ (in "out") and /ow/ (in "down"). This gives me some direction on which sounds are most important to learn next.
Both Nelson and Rebecca are reading sentences in school every day. Yesterday we read some silly sentences that I made up:
That cat is black.
Ted is a man.
Ted has a frog.
Josh is my son.
My dog is fat.
My mom is Beth.
Nelson is my son.
My girl is Rebecca.
We may not know the Dolce words in order, but we have already learned /sh/, /st/, /ch/, /th/, /ck/, /ee/ and more.
And, today they read Genesis 1:1-2 (I wrote it on the board and underlined the combination sounds and split the syllables apart, to help them out. I take these ideas from Writing Road to Reading by Romalda Spaulding). After that we looked at Psalm 1:1a as it appears in the Psalter we use for family worship. I was amazed at how well the kids read Genesis! I wanted to go on, but I did not want to exhaust them. I am getting more and more excited about teaching as their reading progresses!