Hello friends, my name is Jackie, welcome to my Azy Reading Journey website. I hope that the information you find here will help you to make the right decision in choosing a program or system to help you to teach your child to read.
I am the mother of two adult children. I grew up in the Caribbean and we were sent to Basic school (not daycare), from about two years old. So, I was used to seeing children writing and hearing them reading from an early age. At four years old, a child would be capable of doing the school work of a first grader in Elementary school.
When we came to America my first child was four years old, she was more than ready for elementary school because she had gone to Basic school and had also attended private school for a while but she was too young. So, in thinking of ways to teach her while we find a private school, my husband and I did some research and decided on using the Hooked on Phonics program to continue teaching her at home. To keep the learning interesting and exciting, we also included other materials including educational programs that were designed for computer use.
The Hooked on Phonics program that we bought had flash cards, reading materials, work books, key booklet and audio cassettes. That was a long time ago guys because DVDs are now being used. The program did a very good job of holding her attention and keeping her active, plus the additional materials really helped because they were new to her. We eventually found a private school for her and we also continued with teaching her at home. She loved the school and was doing very well but we had some unresolved issues with the school and we sent her to another one. I will say more on the second school later.
When my second child was born, the program was there waiting for her. My husband and I decided that we would start teaching her when she was two years because we had seen how well that had worked with the first one and other kids that we knew. We continue reading to her and introducing her to age appropriate materials. However, as she grew older, she was being introduced to the program as we taught the eldest one, because she was hearing and seeing what was going on. So, when the time came to start teaching her, she was ready. We used the same methods that we were using with the eldest one, and I can truly say the program really worked. She learned to read before she was four years old.
During their growing up years, the kids were sent back to Jamaica for summer holiday, and they attended school while they were there. Getting the opportunity to learn and interact with kids her age opened my youngest child’s appetite for learning. When they came back home, she started saying she wanted to go to school. We started looking for a school, because we were not going to send her to the schools that the eldest one attended.
In asking around for a good school, we heard about the Montessori school, we checked into it further and then enrolled her. She stayed there until she went to elementary. In elementary, she always went to a higher-grade level for reading, and she was always a high achiever. We continued to use the program for a long time because there was so much material, the teaching could go on and on.
You might be wondering what happened to my eldest child since I have not mentioned much about her achievements. Unfortunately, the second private school that we chose for her was not a good fit. Instead of placing her based on her potential, they placed her based on her age. Considering that as a four years old, she was well able to do 1st grade work, and was now going back over things that she had learned before, and being told to take naps did not work well for her.
Her learning foundation was a bit shaken and she got discouraged for a while. At times she did not want to go to school because she said it was boring. She asked me several times to home school her, but I could not afford to stop working. We talked with the people at the school but they would not put her with the older children. We did not want to move her again, and we regretted not moving her from that school. Had we known about the Montessori school; we would definitely have sent her there. We did our best to encourage her and continued to teach her and eventually she got back on track.
Now I have a grandson, Azy, who will be four years old in January and after trying several methods, his mother is looking for a program to teach him to read because what we have tried so far is not working like we thought they would. Maybe, we are using too many activities instead of allowing him to focus on one, then moving to another. He also has a Tablet, but we think he is seeing too many things at once, so he just keeps moving from one thing to the other. I heard that boys learn differently from girls, I do not know if that is true. Hopefully, I will see as I travel with Azy on his reading journey.
WHY I WANT TO HELP PEOPLE
My grandson is going to daycare, so I do not think it will be that difficult to teach him how to read. He can count, sometimes he counts to 20. He is also learning to recognize letters, colors, numbers, shapes, his name plus other little things. His mother has done some research, and has decided on a program. She ordered the program and is waiting for it to be delivered. So, I think it would be a good idea to follow along and see how he interacts with the program and how effective the program is.
When he starts using the program, I will be able to provide some feedback and hopefully help parents who are looking for information about the program. In addition, I will also get the opportunity to help with the teaching. So, in seeing how the program works I will be able to see how long it takes for him to start understanding the materials. Then I will be in a better position to help parents determine if it is a good choice to help them teach their child to read.
THE GOAL OF MY SITE
I know that many parents are busy with work and other activities, but I also believe that it is very worthwhile for kids to learn to read before they start Pre-K. I have seen it both ways, children who could read and those who could not. I remember one child in particular who had a hard time when she started Pre-K because she could not read. In speaking with her you would not know because she was very intelligent for her age. Her parents bought a lot of learning materials, but they did not spend enough time to teach her and they really regretted not doing so. When she started going to school, she was at the bottom of the class and they had to spend a lot of money on tutoring. They also saw how stressful it was for the child and it made them feel bad. I do not want to see my grandson struggle to read. We might be busy, but if we can spend an hour or less per day to teach our kids, we will not regret it and they will be happy.
Sometimes we can get help if we asked. Thankfully, my husband and I worked as a team to help with teaching our children. So, ask other family members for help. If older children are in the house, you can get them to join in the learning process as well. After a while, my children were learning together. We also allowed the eldest one to help with teaching the younger one and they enjoyed learning together.
Remember, the goal is to help your child learn to read. You will not regret it. I hope I have provided enough information to spark your interest.
Thanks for the visit.
More to come.
Founder of Azy Reading Journey.