Once children start sounding out words, they are ready to explode into reading. And, if we are careful to keep the challenge matched with their ability, they are likely to become voracious readers! Most excellent! The best way to get them started and keep them going is to begin by focusing on the smallest unit of our language: WORDS! This tends to happen somewhere between ages 3 and 5 but age ranges are highly variable and in Montessori, we follow the child, not their birth date. (If you're interested in the topic of individualized education, check out this article in the Harvard Ed Magazine).
1. Offer them words that follow the rules
|Phonetic Reading Cards Level 1||Phonetic Reading Cards Level 2|
2. Add in phonetic words with phonograms (also following rules but with one more level of challenge)
|Phonetic Reading Cards Level 3||Phonetic Reading Cards Level 4|
3. Give them many opportunities to practice phonetic and phonogram reading at the world level.
|Phonetic Word Cards||Phonetic Activity Cards||Phonogram Lists|
4. Branch out into non-phonetic words and high frequency "puzzle" or "sight" words (you can introduce these at the same time based on how you can follow/spark the child's interest)
|Puzzle Words||3-Part Reading Cards||Zoology 3-Part Cards|
5. Play games with words: These can be introduced as soon as the child has had success reading non-phonetic 3-part cards...don't wait too long! Grammar and word study activities are super fun for the young child!
|Grammar/Function of Words||Word Study|