Thursday, March 12, 2009

Unschooling Reading

How do you unschool reading? With unschooling, the theory is, you just live life and things happen. I admit that I had wasn't certain this could work with reading. We bought Fridge Phonics years ago, which Princess really liked. We later got Word Whammer. This she played with a little, but wasn't all that into it.

What she really loved and still does, are the Leap Frog movies: The Letter Factory, The Talking Words Factory, The Talking Words Factory 2 - Code Word Caper and The Storybook Factory. In fact she hard a very hard time parting with them when Freckle's son was going to borrow them. These movies she watches over and over and over again.

I have the Hooked on Phonics learn to read program, but we aren't about sitting down to a reading lesson. I just put the books in a basket and left them out for Princess to read whenever she chose. It seemed like things were going well, but slowly.

I bought Dora the Explorer Phonics: 12 Book Reading Program because she knows the characters. I thought these books would be more interesting. I'm not sure why it's called a phonics program, because it's not just phonics. It's simply a basic early reader.

When the books arrived we decided to start a reading time in the evening. The idea was that I would read to her, then I would help her with the Dora books...or so I thought. We snuggled together and I read for a bit. Princess was excited to have her turn. She opened the first book and BOOM, Princess was reading! She does need help with some words, but for the most part, she is really reading. How did that happen?! I know it may not be for everyone, but for us...unschooling rocks!


Kelly said...

Yay! I can't wait for Violet to start reading.

Sarah said...

Watching a child make a learning leap is such a delightful experience!

Such Lovely Freckles said...

Sweet! I love how naturally it comes to them. Learning is truly a beautiful thing.

RasJane said...

It took M forever to start reading. I was loosing my faith in unschooling. Don't we all from time to time? wWhat I found for him was that he just doesn't read out loud. Since I quit that he's read all kinds of books. Goes through them like water. It is always neat for me to see how individual they are. No way could you really and truly educate 30 at a time!

Shady Lady said...

Kelly, it is really exciting!!

Sarah, "learning leap" that! That is the phrase I needed.

Freckly, I totally agree. Learning is a beautiful thing! :)

RasJane, yay for M!!!
I often have unschooling doubts, even during this great success. It's good to know I'm not alone.