Dear Carrie, can you help with The Reading Lesson (TRL) and plans for this coming fall?
My four-year-old daughter has been doing Little Hands to Heaven (LHTH) full-speed. She has also been doing Explode the Code (ETC), a counting page, and one page per day in Heart of Dakota’s (HOD’s) The Reading Lesson (TRL). On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, she does two pages in ETC. Twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays, she does one R & S counting page. She LOVES R&S and ETC and calls them her “fun” books! The problem I am having is regarding TRL.
I did NOT intend to teach her to read until she was five. When I started my son with TRL though, she just jumped in and stayed right where he was until now. Lately she has become resistant. While she was doing two pages per day, I cut her back to one page. However, she still doesn’t want to do it. I don’t want to force her since she is so young. At the same time, however, she is on lesson ten. I hate to start back over this fall, which brings me to the plans I had for her this fall.
Looking Ahead to the Fall
If she were going to public school, she wouldn’t start until next year because of her late birthday. I held my son back by only allowing him to do the right side of Little Hearts for His Glory (LHFHG). Then, I added in LHTH, so they could do LHFHG this fall together. As far as skills go, my daughter would be ready for LHFHG this fall – even with the read alouds (she loves the Burgess books!) But, now I’m not so sure she will be interested in doing so. I am hoping her attitude changes by then because she can definitely be combined with her brother.
I just don’t know what to do with her! Would you completely stop TRL for now, even though she can do it and is halfway through? What about this fall? If she does not want to do LHFHG, what would I do instead? If I waited until the following year when she is five and fixing to turn six, then she and my son will only be one guide apart. I know this is not recommended – especially for Bigger Hearts and Preparing Hearts. Oh my… I’m stressing right now! Any suggestions?
“Ms. Please Help Me with The Reading Lesson and My Fall Plan”
Dear “Ms. Please Help Me with The Reading Lesson and My Fall Plan,”
I think that it sounds like your little almost five-year-old honey will be able to head into LHFHG with your son this coming fall. She sounds ready with her writing skills, her reading skills, and her listening skills (which is great)! So, I would stay the course to keep them combined.
As far as The Reading Lesson (TRL) goes, since your sweetie is so young, you can definitely set it aside for now if desired (and just pick it back up in the fall). One other suggestion that may help (due to your daughter’s young age) when you do pick TRL back up would be to write the words from TRL page on a markerboard one word at a time (using TRL like your Teacher’s Guide for awhile instead of as a Student Book). When your daughter reads the one word on the board correctly, let her erase it. Then, write the next word. Do ten words or so a day this way. Often just seeing one word at a time makes reading the word easy. Erasing it makes it fun! Doing just ten words a day makes it short. But, you are still progressing through TRL (truly losing nothing). You could try this now even, and maybe you won’t have to put TRL aside.
Another Suggestion for the Fall
Another possibility to ponder (to stretch out LHFHG a bit to allow your young one to grow up) would be to do LHFHG 4 days a week next school year. Then, you would go 9 weeks into the next school year to finish LHFHG. This would give you an extra day off each week (where you possibly just do reading and math) and allow your little sweetie to mature a bit to enable her to stay with big brother for the long haul.