One of the crazier things that a parent experiences is watching their child learn to read. Some kids learn early, seemingly on their own, while other kids have a slower progression. Mazzy’s reading skills have been steadily building since kindergarten.
The first time we noticed her skills in action was when she was trying to sound out a totally inappropriate word spray painted on the side of building and we were like— STOP READING!!!!! Uhhh…I mean, that’s great, honey— you’re reading! Now cover your eyes while Mommy tries to figure out a new route to school.
Once Mazzy began to read, it manifested itself more in reading menus (“Yes, this place DOES have ice cream, Mom…”) and the names of the shows on Netflix, rather than sitting down with an actual book. I’ll never forget the time we were riding in a taxi and Mazzy saw the words “Rear Entertainment” appear on the TV in the backseat.
MAZZY: Hahahaha. Rear means butt.
ME: Rear also means the backseat of a car.
MAZZY: Hahahaha. We’re sitting in the butt of a taxi.
Why did I think reading would be the dawn of a new intellectual age, exactly????
Back then, Mazzy considered reading a book as homework, which was assigned to her for 20 minutes a night once she reached second grade. Now, with Mazzy in the third grade, we have finally gotten to the point where she will pick up a book to read by choice, a truly wonderful development. She has 30 minutes of reading to do for homework each night and last night, she actually uttered the words, “You know what, Mom? The teacher said I can read for more than 30 minutes if I want!”
“Uhhhh…yeah. YOU CAN READ FOR AS LONG AS YOU LIKE. Was that not clear??”
Watching Mazzy get totally engrossed in a book that she can’t put down is my dream come true. I can’t wait for the day when my whole family can curl up on the couch, cuddling together, each of us lost in our own books.
Right now, our biggest obstacle is Harlow, who is just entering her own “learning to read” journey. It’s funny because although she is just beginning to put together letters and sounds, Harlow has been “reading” for quite some time. I have tons of old footage of her holding various books, twice her size, either retelling completely memorized stories or making up the words based on the pictures as she flips through the pages. Harlow’s enthusiasm for “reading” shows me just how much it will mean to her when all the letters and spaces and punctuation finally come together.
Leapfrog recently sent us their LeapStart interactive learning system, which combines real books with an electronic device that prompts your child with questions, challenges and activities to help build skills and stay engaged as they attempt to read on their own. Watching Harlow begin to sound out words on LeapStart inspired me to put together a video of Harlow’s entire reading journey thus far, even though it’s obviously just begun.
I hope you like it!
The LeapStart Interactive Learning System is designed to build key skills and challenge kids to get ready for their next step in learning. It uses a stylus that triggers questions, challenges, songs, jokes and more with 25+ different books (sold separately) that spans from preschool to first grade level.
If you’d like to win a Leapfrog Interactive Learning System, please subscribe to my YouTube channel and leave a comment under the video telling me what excites you most about your kid learning to read. I’ll pick one winner on November 10th.
Congratulations to Katie-Lynn Morgan! Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to claim your prize.