Teaching Your Child How to Read – Part 3

Baby Step 3 – Special Sounds, One Vowel and Two vowel rules, and 3 letter words

By now your early learner is well on his or her way to reading. In fact, if they are anything like mine, they are already trying to jump ahead and read some. There may be some small words that they can go ahead and pick out. That’s great! At this point, I would suggest getting them some type of reading books that are on their level. The local library has plenty of these, and you can also invest in a set of Bob Books. There are several levels to these sets, but they are paperback and rather inexpensive. However, they are awesome for your beginner reader to gain confidence in their reading skills.

Your early learner is ready now for the one vowel and two vowel word rules. Once your child is at this point, you begin teaching them these rules. “If there is one vowel in a word it usually says it short sound.” and “If there are two vowels in a word the first one says its long sound and the second one is silent.” I usually have my daughter go through story print outs and mark her vowels. We then try to read the easy 3 letter words.

Special sounds are those consonant combinations that defy all English grammar rules. These are also called digraphs.  Combinations such as “sh”, “thr”, and “th”. I suggest printing out flash cards that help you explain these sounds and then review them regularly with your child.

As your child begins to comprehend the special sounds or digraphs, understands the one vowel and two vowel rules, he or she should be taking reading by leaps and bounds. Your worries are almost over! From here, the things to watch for are speed, flow, and comprehension. You will want to begin incorporating comprehension exercises into your daily reading. Warm up by asking a few questions about the subject they will be reading then ask the questions after they have finished reading.

What an awesome gift you  have given to a child. The key to wisdom and understanding lies in the ability to read!

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