Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Teaching How to Read

Tomorrow I start teaching a BC student how to read. She is not my student, but I have worked with her on her grammar in the Writing Center. I've never actually helped her with homework; it has always been instances when she came to me because she wants to better herself. That is the kind of student that I love!

When I have told friends about teaching her how to read, I always get the same response--but isn't she already in college?? That is what I find so sad. She is a functional reader, but she cannot read for pleasure. She told me that she just wants to be able to pick up a book and read it. Right now, she can't. She can only sight read--meaning she can read words that she knows, but she doesn't know how to sound out words. I can't help but wonder how many of my students, and just people in general, are in the same situation. The thing that makes her different is that she is going to do whatever it takes to change.

She wants me to teach her what sounds letters make, i.e. phonics. So today I was out buying flashcards for her. Even though she has a teenager herself, she wants me to teach her like a kindergartener. So right now, I am going into work early on Wednesdays to meet with her. I will be sure to let you know how things are going. It is definitely different from what I normally do--teaching business and college writing!

For those with more experience in this area--any suggestions?


Sarah said...

That is so cool that you are teaching her how to read. I think all kids should learn to read with phonics. Have fun helping her to better herself.

Megan C. said...

Phonics is the way to go! Teach the rules. Since she probably knows so many sight words, it might be a good idea to use some made-up words just to try to sound them out using the rules.