In October, Soren started Reception year here in the UK. After looking at several schools, we found GVS. We thought it was the best school in the area for him. The headmaster is Super involved and with Soren there are only 11 kids in this Reception class! In some of the larger schools in the area, there can be 30 kids!! They started learning to read & write with a special method called READ, WRITE, Inc. I posted about it before here. I’m so impressed with this system that you have kids aged 4 & 5 reading. The goal is to have ALL kids reading by the end of Year 1. (again, he is in Reception). Here is a PDF that goes into detail about how to help your child read at home along with the chart which shows the color coded books.
Each night, we read together the books which Soren brings home in his bag. He reads it without help nearly each time to mainly Maebh and I. (Nils is crazy busy with work as he’s a couple weeks away from his conferences. When he can, Soren reads to him at the table after dinner). We make notes about the book and anything he sees of interest in his yellow reading journal. It’s a great way to talk with his teacher about his reading. In order for the kids to get new books, the child must read the book to the teacher perfectly. I love this as it is a real way to check that he is in fact, really reading and is doing a lot of words on “sight”. I do think, however, that I’ll get a few more story books out of the library each week for me to read to the kids. I’m currently taking home about 3 but I think I should do a little more variety. Reading the same book a few times, I think can be boring for me and the kids.
Here are two videos when he just started learning – I’ll be sure to capture him again this week as he’s doing so much better!
Today at school drop off, Soren’s main teacher, Ms. Samuels, approached Nils about Soren’s. She asked if he had been seeing the notes they sent home. He said he’s been so busy with work that he had not, but then he said, oh is it regarding his reading and being moved to red? Yes, she said he is so smart and doing so well in reading that she moved him to the next level of books (red). She also went on to say that he was the ONLY child to be moved up so far. The face that he just turned 5, even blew her away more. He often doesn’t need to sound the words out (or does it in his head). She also said he’s doing a lot of teaching Dutch to the kids. When they line up to go to lunch, he walks down the row and counts each one in Dutch! Some of the kids are picking it up too. Guess all this daily book reading and his brains together make him even more amazing! 🙂
On a side note, I recently read a busy mummy-focused online parenting message board about Mums who are too obsessed with their children’s reading levels and it makes the teachers crazy! Constantly asking if they are ahead of the other kids, who is reading at what level, etc. Humm.. hold mirror to face – am I “that Mum”? I certainly hope not, but I do ask questions and am always the mum who is present at the Assembly and at the open class day on Friday. Granted I’m not working full-time out of the home, so I’m afforded the luxury of attending these sessions. In fact, I’m going to sit in on the maths lesson soon as I’d like to get prepared for what to expect. The posting says “why are MN Mums so obsessed with reception reading?” Many go on to write they think it’s partly because the parents who are a bit control freaky or at least used to being very involved with their child’s development, crave information about how they are doing at school and find the adjustment to not seeing them for six hours a day hard. I can certainly agree with the first part but the second part no. Others go on to say they blame the schools. They say that they give you a reading journal which they want completed daily. They hold sessions to help parents help their children with reading, give phonic sheets to go over with them nightly so it’s understandable that some will become overly involved. I might have to sit back and agree, that I might be a bit too overly involved, but I just want what is best for my child and will do my best to make him the smartest and best he can be!