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rainbowmama

Pre-Reading Skills

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My almost four year old is not rhyming yet. He can't break words into their individual sounds or blend sounds yet. He can count syllables. He does know all his letter sounds. He will start a Suzuki violin program, and from having an older kid in this program, I know he will get a lot of practice with listening and pulling apart and putting back together sounds this year in his group class. Of course I read daily to him, with lots of rhyming and alphabet books. It seems like a lot of reading programs assume that kids already have very good phonological awareness and start with letter sounds. I'm torn between hoping that his music class will help get him to where he's ready to read without a formal curriculum and part of me thinks it's really weird that he isn't even rhyming yet, since my other kids did at this age. So, should I pursue a more structured approach to pre-reading skills? And what's recommended? I'm hoping to teaching him with OPGTR, as I've used it previously with good results.

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I don't think it is atypical for a not-quite 4 yo old to not have those skills.  Mine didn't.  They will come with time.

 

If you want to work on them gently, I found AAR pre-reading to be an awesome program with a focus on exactly the skills you've listed.  My 4 yo loved Ziggy the Zebra and AAR pre.

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My daughter couldn't rhyme until she was 8, and had I to explicitly teach her with math, she was reading at the 12th grade level at that point.  

 

The other skills can be worked on easily, work on oral blending, I have a pre-reading YouTube playlist with ideas.  My blending video explains why blending is hard.  Since he knows his letter sounds, you can skip Don Potter's videos in the playlist.

 

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLJLxBWdK_5l3aBN-qowg2u8BdGYM64pTi

 

You can also do some oral spelling in the meantime, both my kids could spell before they could blend.  My son could also blend before he could rhyme, but he learned rhyming at 5 or 6 on his own.

Edited by ElizabethB
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AAR Pre-level is great for all of those skills. Both of mine became rhyming experts with it. But for DS even though he'd mastered all of that level the jump to reading cvc words was really hard on him. I think you need to go at his pace and see when he's getting it. I've been doing AAR Pre-level very slowly with my DD. Some of the lessons are too easy and some are tricky. There is a wide variety of readiness and if he's closer to 3 or 5. He'll get there.

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My DD was also not rhyming at 4, but after a few lessons if AAR pre-reading, she started getting it. Now at almost 5 she'll interrupt us to tell us a string of words that rhyme... She also loves the zebra, but insists his name is Zucky...

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