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CLE Reading--moment of doubt with Learning to Read


Mrs. Frankweiler
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Hello,

 

I'm needing someone to help me relax about this. I've been using CLE's Learning to Read program with my 1st grader. We're on LU105 and it's been going great. I've really had no concerns about it....until now.

 

Last night I took my son to his religion class. They use the (Catholic) "Faith & Life" series and I had noticed that ds had been getting A LOT of pages for homework every week. I stopped by to talk to the teacher about this, and this is how our conversation went:

 

Me: "Is he really getting all this work, or is he just tearing out the wrong pages?" (which had happened before.)

 

Teacher: "Well, those are the pages that he's supposed to do in class but he's having a hard time with them. You should have told me he couldn't read yet."

 

Me: "Are the other kids keeping up with the reading...in all honesty it seems pretty advanced for first grade."

 

Teacher: "You'd be surprised how well some of these kids can read."

 

Me: (and I wish I could turn back time to take this back) "Well, we're homeschooling and the curriculum we're using is a little more traditional--reading really isn't introduced until 1st grade." (aaakkkk! I wish I hadn't said that!) :banghead:

 

Teacher: "Oh, he'll be ok....my son had learning problems too."

 

So, now I'm a little bit freaked...are school kids really that far ahead? I actually like CLE for the exact reason that they don't push reading so early. But this conversation just made me feel so inadequate. And now (since I mentioned the homeschooling) I'm paranoid that she's going to think all homeschoolers are slow. I wish I could fast forward to the end of the year when I know he'll be caught up.

 

I know there aren't too many other Catholics out there using CLE, but if there are...have any of you noticed the vast difference between CLE and Faith & Life reading levels in the early grades? Or am I just crazy? My older kids are also taking religion classes and they are just fine with their books.

 

I feel like my confidence has just suffered a serious blow. I hate that. Anyone with some valuable words of wisdom? I could really use them right now!

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I find that odd. Your dc will end up on a solid second grade reading level when he finishes CLE 1st grade.

 

Maybe the curriculum used at church is based on memorizing the most common words (whole language) and not phonics?

 

CLE does start off assuming you dc hasn't had any prior reading lessons, but it is a very good program.

 

I used CLE LTR with my dd and am presently using it with my ds.

Edited by Tabrett
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Just so that you can get an idea of what I'm talking about, here is an excerpt I pulled from the Ignatius website of the 1st Grade Student Edition for this series. This is from pages 91-92. I don't have any problem with the content of the curriculum, just the reading level. Am I the only one who thinks this is a little above an average first grader's reading level? Or maybe I'm the only Catholic whose kid is not at this level?

 

There is only one God. There are three Divine

Persons in one God: God the Father, God the Son, and

God the Holy Spirit. The Father is God. The Son is

God. The Holy Spirit is God. But together They are

one God.

 

We call the three Persons in one God the Blessed

Trinity. God the Father is the First Person of the

Blessed Trinity. God the Son is the Second Person

of the Blessed Trinity. He became the man Whom we

call Jesus and Who died to save us from sin. God the

Holy Spirit is the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity.

He helps us to pray and to love one another.

 

The three Persons of the Trinity had no

beginning. They always were and always will be.

The three Persons are equal. The Father is not

greater than the Son. The Son is not greater than the

Holy Spirit.

 

We know there are three Persons in one God

because Jesus told us about it. But we cannot really

understand how God can be both three and one. That

is called a mystery and we will have to wait until

Heaven to understand it better. But it can help if you

think about a family. In a family there are the mother,

father, and children, all different persons, but they

are one family. In the Blessed Trinity there are three

Persons, but one God.

 

We often begin our prayers by calling on the

Blessed Trinity. We say, “In the Name of the Father

and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” When we say

these words, we make the Sign of the Cross on our

bodies. And it reminds us that Jesus saved us by dying

on a Cross.

 

When my soul is filled with grace, the Blessed

Trinity lives in me!

Edited by Mrs. Frankweiler
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I have a friend that uses CLE LTR and she is fairly happy with it. She does feel like her reading is not translating OUT of CLE though. She can read the CLE readers but cannot read any "real" books yet. She is finishing 103 (I think) so I have assured her that will change and I would say the same to you. Different programs will teach at different speeds. It will all come together in the end. DO NOT WORRY.

 

Having said that maybe you can help me Tabrett. I though CLE was a sight word (not phonics) based program. I assumed that was why my friend's dd cannot read other books. I know it covers letter sounds but several words are introduced via flashcard, etc. each week. So she can read the word wing (for example) but if she reads a book with the word ring she cannot read it because she hasn't been taught the sounds. Am I way off in the wilderness on this?:001_smile:

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My son is 6 1/2 and in grade 1. We are also using CLE LTR and just started LU 104 yesterday. My son definitely could not read independently for a class assignment. He honestly can't even write independently, aside from copywork. The kids in our area are also learning to read & write much earlier than I expect. You know what? It's okay! My daughter did not learn to read until first grade as well, and she is above grade level now. Your son is getting a solid foundation in reading & by the end of LU 110, he'll be reading at grade level! Do not let yourself feel upset. He is not only going to catch up, but most likely surpass his public school peers. When my daughter was that age, she was in church choir. They handed out sheet music for her to read. I unashamedly told the director that she was still an emergent reader and asked if they could accommodate her. It was a non-issue. Just do the homework with your son. Read the material for him. I would not worry about it at all.

 

Hugs.

 

 

ETA - i'm in SC too :)

Edited by mytwomonkeys
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My two cents. If most first graders in October can read the samples you posted I'll eat my hat. At least here. My dd is using LTR. She just started LU 107. She can read 'easy reader books' from the library. She also surprises me by reading signs and directions out of the blue. CLE uses phonics with a few dolch words thrown in. My current first grader is the first I've taught to read (others were in PS). She is light years ahead of where the others were at this point in the year. Now maybe you're in a much better school district than we are but I was at Kid's Klub with my kids last night and we had 2nd graders who couldn't read the material. Don't compare kids!!!

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:grouphug: Remember that ps children learn a significant list of SITE words in K and 1, so they offer the appearance of reading far better than they can actually read. I suggest they have an excellent memory, which is not the same as being an excellent reader.

 

As for her comment about learning, let the proof be in the pudding. Give him until the end of 2nd grade and watch how a more phonetic approach will have him surpassing the reading abilities of those same children, as their memorized vocabulary will come to a drop off and your son's decoding abilities will show the strength that your patience has provided. I don't know the approach of CLE, regardless, I encourage a Strong phonics foundation.

 

 

I suggest practicing with him at home as many of those words are repeated and I'd simply do the pages with him at home, learning the way he learns, continuing on the path you've chosen. That one area of his class should not dictate how or what you teach. You have chosen to home school. You really have to get comfortable Not comparing the two. There will be many, many areas over time where different approaches will produce different results. Don't sweat it. Keep the course. :grouphug:

 

FWIW, my son took off in reading at 7.5 and is a great reader and loves to read. He would not be happy having to read that much in his bible study class. He could do it, but he would not be pleased.

Edited by johnandtinagilbert
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My son is in first grade at a private school. He could read that passage, but he reads well above grade level. I'd say probably a third of the kids in his class would be able to read that. I don't think you should worry at all.

 

That said, public schools usually have kids reading and able to write sentences by the end of kindergarten. CLE has kids starting to read in first grade. So the beginning of LTR is like what ps kids get at the beginning of K, but CLE progresses *much* faster. I've looked at the I Wonder reader, and it looks inline with what first graders typically read in the second half of the year. I'll bet next year, there won't be any difference between your second grader and the other second graders.

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I have a friend that uses CLE LTR and she is fairly happy with it. She does feel like her reading is not translating OUT of CLE though. She can read the CLE readers but cannot read any "real" books yet. She is finishing 103 (I think) so I have assured her that will change and I would say the same to you. Different programs will teach at different speeds. It will all come together in the end. DO NOT WORRY.

 

Having said that maybe you can help me Tabrett. I though CLE was a sight word (not phonics) based program. I assumed that was why my friend's dd cannot read other books. I know it covers letter sounds but several words are introduced via flashcard, etc. each week. So she can read the word wing (for example) but if she reads a book with the word ring she cannot read it because she hasn't been taught the sounds. Am I way off in the wilderness on this?:001_smile:

 

In the beginning, CLE teaches one sight word per letter of the alphabet. Then adds more sight words. The rest is pure phonics. My ds, who is in k, is in LU 103 and can read bob type books. He has sat down and independently read SL k readers.

CLE LTR is very similar to R&S. My dd also read R&S book along with CLE LTR.

 

My ds did know the letter sounds before starting CLE LTR. I am stretching out CLE LTR to last a full year instead of a half.

 

/ing/ is taught in LU 109. That would mean that a dc would not learn /ing/ until around the 17th weeks of school. CLE LTR is to be completed in two 9 week periods. It is the first half of first grade. I Wonder is the second half of first grade with 10 more LU's.

 

My dd finished CLE LTR only last year and was able to start HOD emerging reader series. THe emerging readers series include books like The Early Readers Bible, Frog and Toad and Owl at Home.

 

I am guessing the sample passage the poster posted is more of a 3rd grade reading level. If my first grader was sent work home with like text, I would assume I was to be read it to my dc by me.

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We are using CLE Learning to Read for my first grader and I teach CCD with a class of mixed ages using Faith & Life - Level One. Faith and Life is too advanced for many of my students to read and there is a lot of writing as well (the pages do not have handwriting guides as most first grade curriculum). I simply dispensed with the workbook for my class using Faith and Life. If the parents wish to do the workbook pages with their kids at home -- they can. If not, I cover everything orally, with music, and acting it out, with crafts, etc.

 

Do not worry or second guess yourself over this. Faith and Life is out of line with the reading/writing expectations for that age group. CLE goes very slowly at first, since they do not really have a reading curriculum at the K level. My 6yo is picking up reading a lot faster than CLE is teaching it (we're reading Dr. Seuss books) but they are thorough and she likes the variety (dot patterns, for example).

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We are using CLE Learning to Read for my first grader and I teach CCD with a class of mixed ages using Faith & Life - Level One. Faith and Life is too advanced for many of my students to read and there is a lot of writing as well (the pages do not have handwriting guides as most first grade curriculum). I simply dispensed with the workbook for my class using Faith and Life. If the parents wish to do the workbook pages with their kids at home -- they can. If not, I cover everything orally, with music, and acting it out, with crafts, etc.

 

Do not worry or second guess yourself over this. Faith and Life is out of line with the reading/writing expectations for that age group. CLE goes very slowly at first, since they do not really have a reading curriculum at the K level. My 6yo is picking up reading a lot faster than CLE is teaching it (we're reading Dr. Seuss books) but they are thorough and she likes the variety (dot patterns, for example).

:hurray: I love to see teacher's actually teaching!
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