What Makes a Good Reader?

Often times, parents will ask how can they  help their child become a stronger reader. There are several components necessary for building a strong reader and when one of the components is weaker, it can affect other areas such as comprehension. The components include:

Phonemic awareness skills-which is having the ability to manipulate sounds that make up our spoken language

Phonics skills-which is having the understanding that there are relationships between letters and sounds

Fluency skills-which is reading with accuracy, speed, and expression (or prosody)

Application of reading comprehension strategies to enhance their understanding, and they should enjoy what they are reading. Reading should be fun! 

Within these components, a child must also utilize known strategies for decoding new words, know how to figure out the meaning of new vocabulary, and pull that together for smooth fluency.   Some children learn these reading skills regardless of how they are taught while other children truly need these skills taught explicitly meaning they need them taught through direct instruction.

There can be a fine line between a struggling reader and a reluctant reader.  A struggling reader will be having difficulties with one or more of the above areas and, often times, as the child gets older can “mask” those missed skills.  A reluctant reader could be a struggling reader or could be that he/she hasn’t yet developed the overall fluency skills necessary to enjoy a book.  I do want to remind parents that reader’s theatre passages, comic books, graphic novels and poetry books are good resources to use for having a student choose a book or reading material that he/she is interested in.   It’s also important for a child to be choosing independent reading books that is “just right”. What does “just right” mean?  It means that your child can open a book to any given page and have less than five decoding errors.  Plus, they should be able to tell you what was read.

If you want to strengthen your child’s overall reading, it’s important to first determine the area or areas he/she needs to focus on.   If your child is struggling overall with comprehension then it’s possible he/she needs help with the three previous skills stated above.

I’ll work on typing up a “series” of reading information and strategies for the different components above.  In the meantime, if you have any specific questions please e-mail them to me at confidentsolutions7@gmail.com.

We also have some helpful reading resources and books on our Pinterest page.  You can check them out here https://www.pinterest.com/confidentsoluti/boards/

With love of reading,

Christina

books

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What Is Inside of my OG Bag?

My Orton-Gillingham bag is full of fantastic resources and tools to help a child read. It is quite heavy!  I  was looking for a large bag that would zip close.  I decided on this bag from Lands End because of the pockets on the inside and the heavy fabric.

OG Bag

OG Bag 2

Sitting right inside is my double blending board.  I found this one on Etsy.  It’s made in Colorado using blue stain pine.  Love it as much as i do? Check out their Etsy site here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/245551667/18-single-blending-board-with-blue-stain?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=blending%20board&ref=sc_gallery_3&plkey=f08b7dba599f0db574d5a0464f6715fba28101e6:245551667

Blending Board

I have two sets of the OG card packs. These are used during each session to review sounds, teach new sounds, and practice how they are spelled.  We than practice how to blend the sounds together on the board.

Blending Board 2

 

card deck

I found two perfectly sized containers at Target to hold my red and green crayons.  You can buy just red or green crayons straight from amazon. Here’s a link: https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=red+crayons

crayons

I have this little 31 tote bag inside that holds different sized sticky notes as well as extra colored index cards.  It’s important to be able to find what I need quickly in my bag when working with a child.

container

Those colored index cards make the vowel tents.  This is where we practice the open and closed sounds of the vowels not only in isolation but in words as well.

vowel tents 1

Flip those vowel tents inside out, prop them back up and you have the different sounds that -ed makes.

Vowel Tents 2

I love a good notebook! 🙂 I have a notebook for everything! Here is where I can quickly take notes on each student and later write it in their individual file.

notebook

No OG is complete without their multi-sensory sand. It has two different colors with two different grains.  When we pour it on a paper plate and the student spells the sound, the color pops through.

Sand

Here’s where the inside pockets of my large bag come in handy. I have three small containers.  One for glue sticks and tape, one for vowel intensive craft sticks, and one for highlighters and pens.  I also have individual pouches of pencils and my scissors.

boxes

Pencils Scissors

An important tool is the Recipe for Reading book. It has letter sounds, vowel digraphs, consonant blends, and spelling rules in a sequential cumulative order.

Recipe

Another 31 bag that I previously had sits at the bottom of my bag with all of my file folders.  I have an individual file folder for each student, assessments, literacy connection pieces, phonological awareness activities, encoding and decoding tools.

Folders

This is a wonderful tool for encoding phonetic words.

Finger Tapping.jpg

 

For decoding new words, students learn the different syllable division patterns. I personally love this activity. 🙂 The composition notebook is cut in half. After the student completes a decoding activity through syllable division, she/he glues it into their notebook to create an interactive colorful notebook with the syllable division rule. We also add vocabulary meanings when necessary.  We use the highlighters here which not only makes it colorful but easy to locate the individual rules.

Syllable Division.jpg

 

I stapled my baggies of felt to the inside of my Elkonin Boxes folders for students who need extra practice with Phonological Awareness.

Elkonin Boxes

This Phonological Awareness book creates practice of skills through fun and engaging games.

Phonological Games

A file folder with everything I need to teach a new red word.

Red Words

 

Another important piece is strengthening vocabulary, comprehension, and fluency.  I have books and folders of reading passages that align with the lesson being learned that specifically work on each of those three areas.  I also have a file folder of different levels of reader’s theater for students to practice reading.

If you would like to receive updates to our website, please enter your e-mail address on our home page and connect with us on Facebook.

Check us out on Pinterest as well! We are finding some useful resources that we love sharing.

https://www.pinterest.com/confidentsoluti/boards/

 

If you’re interested in OG tutoring, or hearing more about Orton-Gillingham, please send me an e-mail at confidentsolutions7@gmail.com.  Please put OG Tutoring in the subject line.

With Gratitude,

Christina

Organizing Your Paperwork

Summertime brings a perfect opportunity to get your child’s paperwork organized.  We have two forms that we use when organizing files.  You can download them here:

unit-1-cs  and following-units-2-cs

We recommend having an organizational system that works well with your style.  One typical system is to purchase a large 3-ring binder and insert the papers in order.  Make sure you have a tab for school communication and print your e-mails and document your phone conversations with your child’s school.  Christina has a 31 tote bag and keeps file folders organized by current IEPs, evaluations, and all pertinent documentation.  It’s easy to carry to a meeting and can quickly find the folder needed on a moment’s notice.

We have found a terrific resource in organizing your child’s paperwork from the Understood website.  You can find it here https://www.understood.org/en/school-learning/special-services/ieps/how-to-organize-your-childs-iep-binder?utm_source=pinterest&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=understoodorg

You can also find resources through our Pinterest page here https://www.pinterest.com/confidentsoluti/boards/

Remember, all special education paperwork will be accompanied with its own DEC5. If you would like to refresh your knowledge each type of form, you can look through our archives on past posts or send us an e-mail with your question! We love connecting with you and helping in any way we are able!

Happy Summer!

With Gratitude,

Christina and Wendy

 

 

time

Pinterest

We are now on Pinterest!   From our homepage on our website, scroll down and you’ll see the “P” on the right hand side.  Click and it will take you to Pinterest.   When we tested the link, it did take us to the main Pinterest page.  However, once I started typing in Confident Solutions LLC, our name and hummingbird popped right up.  We have started with eleven boards but think we’ll be adding more quickly.  Who doesn’t love finding inspiration on Pinterest?  We would love to connect with you there!

With Appreciation,

Christina and Wendy

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