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Thread: Illiterate DS.... epiphany moment!

  1. #1

    Default Illiterate DS.... epiphany moment!

    ok.. I am not sure who I should be more upset with...

    Myself for not having sat down with him sooner or his past dozen teachers for not realising they had failed him on the most basic level!

    Chilly is illiterate. Its been breaking my heart for a long time. I will confess that I have tried to sit with him to read a book before, but I am not really a teacher so I really had no idea where to start or how to approach it and became frustrated. More with myself than him because I just couldn't fix it.

    Today after dinner and waiting on dessert I sat down with him and Angels year 7&8 spelling list. As he is in year 7 I wanted to see what words he could spell and some of them are rather freakishly easy. It was after the second word where he said I for the R sound that it occurred to me.

    We revisited the alphabet. We wrote down every letter, enunciated every sound. Then with the alphabet in front of him to 'remind' him of the sounds, I wrote down phonetical words. He read every single one. With every word he read I gave him praise. I worked with him on contractions and showed him syllables to break the word down and make reading it easier. And he read. Unassisted, unaided, unprompted.

    Now he wants books, world lists, anything with words. All of a sudden a light went on and he has realised he can read and he wants to.

    Surely it cant have been this simple all along???? I cannot really have just fixed 6 years of trouble in 15 minutes?? WTF?



    Obviously we shall continue working. We need to broach silent letters and non-phonetical words next, but for now we are just utterly thrilled to have him starting out with reading words confidently!

  2. #2

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    wow, that's awesome!

  3. #3

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    WOW! sounds like 15 mins of mummy magic has done it!!!!

    Chilly isn't illiterate at all. Ummmmm wtf has been going on with these teachers???

  4. #4

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    I can't believe the teachers have never picked up on anything, what a great job you are doing.

    Regards,
    Dianne

  5. #5

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    That is fantastic!! Well done to you and chilly! A brilliant idea

  6. #6

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    Oh wow, that's brilliant news! Well done! Well done Chilly, keep up the good work!!!!

  7. #7

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    That is awesome Inertia.
    A bit of a worry re the teachers though... have you told them? what did they say?

  8. #8

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    stories like this make me embarrassed to be a teacher. Our system fails so many kids it's ridiculous! I can't believe that none of his teachers thought to go back to basics with him, this is the problem with a school system that pushes teachers to advance the high achievers and places so many time constraints and restrictions on staff that students who are struggling, or like your DS have missed something along the way get left behind because there simply isn't time. Believe me- I'm not trying to make excuses, even if the teachers didn't have time in class to work with your son, they should have been communicating with you about things you could have been doing at home.

    Well done to you and your DS, I hope his new found love of words continues.

    Oh- and your first question- who you should be more upset with? The people who have as their core business the education of your son and have failed him! The school and teachers!!

  9. #9

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    Oh Glenny, it certainly isn't all of you. He has had some wonderful teachers over the time but really I guess it just never occurs to anyone that they have the alphabet wrong. Its certainly something that I am sure as a teacher you would say is out of the blue and really not common. I myself was stunned at how basic it was. I really missed catching it too.

    TBH the school he did kindy in was extremely sub-standard. We had a foster daughter at one point who did all her primary schooling there and she was also illiterate. They never once called me or made me aware of how far behind my children were. It was hard to be informed by the new school that both my children were so far behind. One was reading at a grade 1 level and the other couldnt read at all. They were in years 5 and 4 at the time. The new school put Angel in "Reading Recovery" and worked pure magic. They had her completely ready for high school by the end of year 6 and she has never fallen behind since. Chilly however, they moved him to SPED and still couldnt work it out. They had us going to paeds and looking for diagnosable problems that could be causing it. Unfortunately his self esteem and confidence was pounded by all of this which I dont think helped.

    What I am afraid of now is with him going to a new school again, they have not been there for this whole journey so I fear they might overwhelm him trying to catch him up. He is at risk of repeating yr7 at the moment because he missed so much. I have my work cut out for me for the rest of the year trying to help him where I can and help him cope with a mainstream workload.

  10. #10

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    Just wondering how it's all going now?
    Have read this thread with interest as
    Our ds struggled in the same area, I put it down the the whole word approach he was taught at school. SInce being at home I have taken him right back to a phonetic approach and wow what a difference it made.
    I really feel for the teachers far too much paper work and too little hands on stuff which lets face it thats why teachers become teachers for the hands on stuff.

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