Preschool—Learning ABC’s

When you are ready to teach letter names and sounds to your preschool/kinder students, it is nice if you can post large size letters on the wall so your child can look at them frequently.  Just as when teaching colors and shapes, to make it easier for your child, you should post and teach only one letter-name and letter-sound at a time.  It is very important that you teach the sound of the letter as well as the letter name. This will be very useful when you begin to teach your child to read a bit later on.

SnipBlog105bOne or two letters a week is about the right amount for this age group.  Do not post a new letter until your child knows the previous one, even if it takes more time.  If a young child is not able to learn one letter a week, he is probably not ready for this task.file contains black outline letters that you can print onto colored paper or colored cardstock if you so desire.  To alternate colors, print page one on red, page two on orange, page three on yellow, page four on green, page five on blue; then repeat for the next five pages—and so forth. Cut out the letters so the shape of each one is distinct when placed on a white background.


Have fun teaching the alphabet and the letter-sounds, and take it nice and slow with your preschoolers!

You can get your FREE printable large size black outline ABC’s here.

You Can Teach Your Child To Read! Week 8

Spend a day teaching your child the new letter-sound /d/ that is introduced in this reading lesson. Teach your child to sound out the new word, dog.  This week your child will also learn the sight word “A.”  Sight words are not sounded out. Tell your child this word and that it can look like this: A, or like this: a. Help your child practice reading the sight word in the sentences below.

In the near future, I will post a blog that will give you more information about sight words and how to teach them.


You Can Teach Your Child To Read! Week 6

This week you will need to teach your child the sound of a new letter, the letter g, a day or two prior to going through this lesson.  Then practice slowly blending the two new words, not and got. Then go through this lesson at a speed that is comfortable for your child.  Next week you will read another decodable story. 

You Can Teach Your Child To Read! Week 5

Review the lesson from last week, and then practice reading this decodable story. Cover all of the sentences except for the first one with a sheet of paper so your child can only see one line of print at a time.  Move the paper down one line at a time. Remember to move your finger slowly under each word as you go along. Your child may still be blending each word carefully as he reads.

You Can Teach Your Child To Read! Week 4

You have taught your child five letter-sounds and practiced blending words using those sounds. Now it’s time to have a short reading lesson.  Be sure to keep it positive.  If your student forgets a word, no problem, just give a gentle reminder.  Keep the learning positive at all times so your student will want to keep on learning and reading will become an enjoyable activity.

You Can Teach Your Child To Read! Week 3

This week your child should easily recognize the sounds for these letters: h, p, o, t, and n.  Now you are ready to teach her how to blend these sounds into words. First, review the sounds. Then sound out two letters and blend the two letters together. Finally, add a third letter and blend the three letters into a word.

Do not drag out the sounds of the consonants because that will distort the sound and make words hard to recognize.  So, do not say:  huh – aw – tuh.  Instead, say the first consonant sound quickly, do drag out the vowel sound a little bit, and then say the final consonant sound quickly, like this:  /h-aaaw-t/.

Day 1 – Review the sounds of the letters: 

Show your child how to blend just two words:  hot and pot.  First you say the sound of each letter. Ask your child to repeat each sound after you:  /aaw/ – /t/, and then blend the sounds together:  “ot.”  Move your finger under each letter from left-to-right as you say the sounds so your child will be learning to look at and connect every letter in the word from left-to right. Repeat a few times. Do this again later in the day a couple of times.

Day 2 – If your child can  sound out the two words from yesterday, hot and pot, then teach her to sound out two more words: on and top. See if she can do it by herself.  If not, show her how to do it, and then ask her to repeat it after you. After a time or two, she should be able to do this alone.

First, sound out each letter, then blend the letters into a word:  /o/ – /n/   (aww – nnn).

Day 3 – Review the sounds of all five letters, review all four words and then read the phrases.

You Can Teach Your Child To Read! Week 2

Last week we talked about teaching your child the sounds of the letters of the alphabet.  Your assignment was to teach your kindergarten age child two letter-sounds. This week you will learn how to produce your own letter cards on the computer, and you will teach three new letter-sounds to your child.

Make your own letters on the computer.  Use the Arial font because it has simpler letter shapes.  Make the letters BIG—in at least a size 200—while your child is learning the letter-sounds.  You will be able to print between 4 and 9 letters per page.  Print it onto cardstock if possible, and cut the letters apart.  As before, teach only one new letter-sound at a time, but continue to review previously learned sounds. This is important.  It may seem slow at first, but you want your child to have plenty of time to recognize the shape of the letter and to associate it with its sound before you introduce a new one.

These are letter-sounds to teach this week.  Note:  Teach the short sound of the letter o.  It makes a sound like /aw/ as you hear in the word dog. After your child has learned these first five letter-sounds, we will talk about learning to blend the sounds to make words.

Many children, especially boys, are not going to sit down, fold their hands at a little desk, and wait to find out what you want them to learn. So don’t ask them to sit if they want to stand, and don’t spend more than couple of minutes at a time teaching the sounds. The key to teaching active children is to teach a little at a time, several times a day. If you are working and are not home all day, you can still do this—you might want to teach one thing right after work, repeat the teaching just before dinner or just after dinner and repeat it again just before bedtime. Whatever works for you is fine, as long as there is repetition. After your child has learned these first five letter-sounds, we will talk about learning to blend the sounds to make words.

You Can Teach Your Child To Read! Week 1

Teaching reading is not difficult if you know what to do. Children are often taught to recognize and name the letters of the alphabet by the time they enter kindergarten or first grade. Children should also learn the sounds of the letters. Unfortunately this is not taught in every reading program, but it is easy to teach.

If you have already taught the alphabet to your child you can teach the sounds of the letters, a few at a time. If you have not taught the alphabet yet, your child can learn letter names and letter-sounds at the same time. For the next several blogs, I am going to show you how to begin teaching your child to read, step-by-step. If your student is a little older and having difficulty learning to read, you can help your child learn to read by following this series even though the beginning will seem a little too easy. Caution: I do not recommend teaching children any younger than age 4 to read.

Here’s your first assignment. Teach the sound of one letter.  Post one letter of the alphabet on the refrigerator (or on a door or a wall) at the eye level of your child. Tell your child the sound of the letter.  Ask your child to say the sound with you. Then ask your child to tell you the sound. That’s all. A bit later, point to the letter and ask your child what sound it represents.  If he has forgotten, tell him the sound again, and ask him to say the sound aloud to you a few times. That’s all. You want your child to treat this as a game.

When your child can consistently tell you the sound of the first letter without your help, then and only then, you post a second letter on the wall and repeat the process. Now ask your child to tell you the sounds for both letters. If you wish to go more slowly and spend more than one day for each letter-sound, then do so.