When is your student ready to read decodable books for beginners? Reading Elephant has printable decodable books that walk kids through each sound, but first, kids need to be able to identify most letter sounds and do some phonemic awareness activities. Here is a guide to getting your student started on decodable books:
- Teach kids to hold continuous sounds- Teach your student to hold continuous sounds like mmmmm. Continuous sounds can be held for a long time without any sound distortion. These sounds are helpful for beginning readers, because they allow kids to move fluidly from one sound to the next (this helps with blending). When reading decodable books for beginners, these continuous sounds allow kids to read the sounds slowly.
- Teach kids to clip stop sounds- Teach your student to clip stop sounds. You cannot hold stop sounds for a long time, otherwise you’ll distort the sound. For example, if you try to say /d/ for a long time, you’ll say duh. Make sure your student clips off the /uh/ sound. If you don’t teach him to clip stop sounds, he’ll struggle with blending. For example, he might read “dog” as duhoooguh… dug?
- Kids must know the short a sound. Your student does not need to know all vowel sounds to begin reading decodable books. At first, he just needs to know short a as in apple. Short a cvc words include cat, mat, Sam, fan…etc. Reading Elephant decodable books for beginners walk students through each short vowel, as our series introduces one vowel sound at a time. Thus, your student only needs to know most letter sounds and short a to begin Set 1 Book 1.
- Can your student blend yet? If so, and 1-3 hold true, he’s ready to read decodable books. To see if your student can blend simply do a phonemic awareness activity. Say, “I’m going to say a word slowly. Listen and put the sounds back together. Sssss-aaaaa-mmmm. Put them together.” Your student should say, “Sam!” Say the following ten words and have your student put them together: bit, fan, log, man, vet, dog, tan, cop, hen, pit. Did your student correctly identify 70% of these words? She’s ready to read Set 1 Book 1 of our decodable books for beginners.
If your student can do all of the above, get him started on books. The sooner he begins reading decodable books for beginners, the sooner he can work on fluency (reading speed). Kids become more fluent through early phonics instruction and ample reading practice: the more words read, the faster he’ll become. Thus, getting started in Kindergarten allows your student to gain exposure to more words sooner. Ultimately, this leads to smoother, faster reading and more fluent readers are more likely to enjoy reading. As you can see, early exposure to research-based instruction leads to a virtuous cycle.
Hi, My name is Jessica .. I am raising my 7-year-old grandson, He was diagnosed with ADD.. he is struggling to learn this, I am trying my best… I think this is a great thing you are doing to help our children… I’m working on getting my printer working correctly .. I know these will help him… Thank you again…be safe…
B Marker says
Thank you for your kind comment! I really appreciate it! I hope your student loves the books!