Even with reading being something that I enjoy, when I think about teaching my kids to read, it seems like a daunting task. Both Monte and I read to the little people a lot, but when I think about all of the initial memorization work that is required by the end of the first year of school, it seems impossible.
In reality, I know it is possible... I think my disbelief stems more from thinking of my kids in terms of babies and not independent readers. In fact they are... or are becoming so...
We started reading Paddington Bear chapter books with Gavin when he was about to enter into kindergarten. He loved them and we both really looked forward to our time reading together. As he got older, we graduated to other kinds of books and would take turns reading. He reads at a break-neck pace now, which amazes me. I think a part of his success as a reader is his insatiable thirst for information. He has to know it all. (I tell him he's nosy.) It's also why he is such a great speller... Monte and I would spell out conversations to each other, when we didn't want Gavin to know what we were discussing... we did that until he'd tell us what we were spelling.
We read together and have tried a chapter book; Stewart Little. That process was a little long for him... so we backed away from those bigger books and have been spending our time reading things that are manageable for him. He memorizes the words so he can read too. We started with the word "the." Each time it would occur in the text, it would be Benett's job to read that word. He enjoys being able to read along and that process is translating into recognizing the word in other texts. I love seeing his pride as he builds his reading repertoire.
I think we'll take that reading thing and carry it on in our Christmas gift for Benett. I have an idea formulating in my head... with any luck, I'll be able to execute my vision and create a fun little space just for our newest budding reader.