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TnT Weekly Wrap: Reading Success

Find tips and practical ideas to help students learn to read, spell and write. | topnotchteaching.comWelcome to this week’s wrap where I share some of the successes and challenges of being a specialist dyslexia teacher.

Success with a beginning reader

A couple of months ago I started working one-on-one with a girl in pre-primary (5 years old). I had a number of issues with this girl settling in which I shared with you here. We’ve worked hard together and the girl now willingly attends sessions with me and participates well.

And wow the improvement I’ve seen in this child’s reading and spelling is pretty amazing. When I started with her I thought that she may be a bit too young, but she is absolutely soaking up everything we do.

Toward the beginning of the year the child’s teacher gave the parent the below sheet of paper and said that the child must learn all of these words. This caused the Mum and the child a great deal of stress as the Mum had no idea how to help her daughter with reading and spelling the words. She decided to give it away and not add the stress to them anymore.

How to achieve reading success with a beginning reader. | topnotchteaching.comLucky the Mum was pro-active and contacted the Dyslexia Foundation who put her in touch with me. When I first assessed the child some of the areas of weakness I found included:

  • Was only able to blend words with three sounds;
  • Had particular difficulty with being able to segment words. She would often be able to say the first sound, but was then unable to say the remaining sounds in words;
  • Unable to delete any sounds in words and be able to say the remaining words;
  • Could not identify any common two-letter spellings and
  • Could only recognize the letters and sounds that she had personal experience with, about 10 letters.

After 10 session together and working through the Sounds~Write program, the girl is now able to read many of the words on the above sheet of paper. The Mum pulled the sheet out a few weeks ago to check if her daughter was able to read any of the words. Not only did the daughter willingly try to read them, but all of the words with ticks she is now able to read.

The child’s teacher also came to see me a couple of weeks ago. She shared with me how much more confident the girl is in class and the improvement the teacher has seen in her reading and spelling is fantastic. I think the word she actually used was, ‘wow’. She is extremely happy with the progress the child has made and thanked me for helping her.

I know this sounds a bit like I’m blowing my own trumpet, but as a teacher it’s not very often that we get such nice feedback from both the parent and another teacher. I have so much confidence in the Sounds~Write approach to teaching reading, spelling and writing and I especially love sharing success stories with you.

I’ve also got some pictures below of some of the other work we’ve been doing together. The first is of the game tic, tac, toe (naughts and crosses) that we played with a couple of list words. The second is of a sentence that I dictated to the girl, and I provided no help with the dictation. In case you can’t read it, it says: A man sat on a map. It was lovely to see how proud she was of this sentence, that she asked me to take some photos to send to her Mum.

How to achieve reading success with a beginning reader. | topnotchteaching.comHow to achieve reading success with a beginning reader. | topnotchteaching.comHave you got any success stories? If so I’d love to hear about them in the comments.

For More TnT Weekly Wrap’s, see these:

Graphic Credits: Graphics From the Pond and Dollar Graphics Depot

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