Session Four : Making Reading Heavenly Blog
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Session Four

by Cathy Angel on 04/10/20

Profound Thought Number 9:  Put a timer on it!  If you have competitive boys, they can’t resist trying to beat their own time.  My kindergarten student’s teacher would like his sight words automatic. So, we do them once each day and time how long it takes.  Typically, it takes less than three minutes.  Considering how many times he will read these in print, I’m fine with spending three minutes per session to acquire automaticity! Without a timer, this activity could take 5 minutes or more—depending on his attention. 

Profound Thought Number 10:  Research about ‘sight words’ The Fry Sight Words list is a more modern list of words than the Dolch list, and was extended to capture the most common 1,000 words. Dr. Edward Fry developed this expanded list in the 1950s and updated it in 1980. It is based on the most common words to appear in reading materials used in Grades 3-9. Learning all 1,000 words in the Fry list would equip a child to read about 90% of the words in a typical book, newspaper, or website.

According to Fry's research, completed in 1996, the first 25 words make up about 1/3 of all items published. The first 100 words make up about 1/2 of all the words found in publications. The first 300 words make up about 2/3 of all written materials. Can you see how making these automatic will go a long way to helping a struggling reader become fluent?

Our Level A and Level B Outlaw words in our Dictation Sentences include all of the non-decodable words in Frey’s 1st 100 list.  Many words like; when, then, them and than, which are not included in our lists, are decodable if you know the digraphs ‘th’ and ‘wh’. We do not believe in having decodable words be part of our Outlaw Words because they can be decoded instead of memorized. 

Although we do spend 2 – 3 minutes reviewing the pack of Outlaw Word cards, I also have students read orally to me so we can practice fluency.  

Profound Thought Number 11:  Did you know a dyslexic child will make many mistakes on easy sight words and do fairly well decoding harder words?

More another day! 

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