Tag Archives: educational

Grow a Reader this Summer!

20 Apr

Have you already started mapping out your summer plans?  If you have kids who haven’t learned to read yet, consider using this summer to teach them!  All you need is a few minutes every day and this fabulous book, Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons by Siegfried Engelmann. In approximately the duration of your child’s summer vacation, you can teach them one of life’s most valuable – and fun – skills!

When my son (now 6 ½) was 3 ½, I wanted to start teaching him how to read.  He knew most of his letter sounds, and he would sit still for any length of story I would read him.  It seemed like the right time to get going.

But where to start?  I didn’t know the first thing about how to approach it.

At the recommendation of some moms I know, I bought the book mentioned above.  It’s a very specific method of teaching reading to children.  (The book states that it’s designed for 4- or 5-year-olds, but can also be taught to bright 3 ½-year-olds.)  Its huge size seems a bit daunting at first, but the layout is very easy to follow.

Just do one lesson a day (or every other day, whatever your child can handle and your schedule allows).  Each lesson is presented with exact instructions, down to a teaching script so you know what to say with each task.

Every lesson includes writing practice, and the whole thing only takes about 10-20 minutes to complete.  By the time you reach lesson 50, your child will be reading an entire paragraph!  This amazing book completely takes the guesswork out of this process.

One thing you MUST do before you start teaching your child with this book: read the parent instructions.  It is imperative that you have an understanding of how the lessons work before you begin teaching, or you will stumble around and lose your child’s interest – which we all know is the kiss of death!

An added way to make the lessons fun (and to incorporate a bit of math, too) is to make a chart of squares numbered 1-100.  Each time your child finishes a lesson, they can put a sticker or a stamp in the square for the lesson they completed.  Once they’re done with all 100, they earn a prize.  Or you can give them a prize after every row of 10 – whatever works for you!

My son reads extremely well now.  He’s become a real lover of books, and can read anything we throw at him.  Knowing how to read has given him  independence and confidence to start him on a path to success in school, which is something that will serve him well for the rest of his life!

That's my boy!

I’m now using my well-worn copy of the book, with its many wrinkled pages and a taped-up cover, to instruct my 4 ½-year-old daughter.  She’s coming along great!

If you’ve never taught someone the skill of reading, you’re in for quite an experience.  It’s tedious, frustrating, and sometimes seems impossible, but the end result is an accomplishment that both you and your little one will cherish.  Summer vacation is a perfect time to do it!

Celebrate Earth Day at Lakeshore Learning Store

14 Apr

Bring the kids to Lakeshore Learning Store in Dallas on Saturday, April 16, from 11 am to 3 pm for a fun Earth Day celebration!

Decorate a kids’ tote bag, plant a flower to grow at home, and play with products inspired by nature – and it’s all FREE!

Lakeshore Learning Store is located at 13846 N. Dallas Parkway in Dallas.  For more information, or to score some store coupons, visit their website at www.lakeshorelearning.com.

FREE Kids’ Activities at the Kimbell Art Museum!

15 Mar

During Spring Break this week, visit the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth for some free activities!  From their website, www.kimbellart.org:

Tuesday–Thursday, March 15–17, 10 a.m.–3 p.m.
Friday, March 18, noon–5 p.m.

Drop in during your family vacation for a varied schedule of creative learning activities, spotlight gallery talks, and films for young audiences. Children of all ages and their adult companions will enjoy opportunities to create drawings inspired by ancient Greek vases, experiment with print-making techniques, and use everything but the brush for original paintings. Thirty-minute docent-guided “art talks” will encourage families to investigate topics relating to artworks in the permanent collection. Children’s films featuring famous artists and other topics will be offered in partnership with the Lone Star Film Society and KIDS FIRST!

Click here for a full schedule. The program is free (although admission is required for the special exhibition); no reservations required.

Free Kids’ Crafts at Lakeshore Learning

25 Feb

Lakeshore Learning, an educational store in Dallas, offers FREE kids’ crafts every Saturday from 11 am to 3 pm.

Upcoming crafts:

February 26: My Very Own Storybook

March 5: Mardi Gras Mask

March 12: Show Your Colors! Peacock

March 19: Rainbow Wreath

March 26: Brilliant Butterfly

For the Lakeshore Learning website, click here.

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