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  1. #1

    Default Hello from Lancashire UK

    Hi there

    I am a mummy of 5 children my youngest is 4 and my eldest is 21. I have just become a grandparent. I don't like the name Grandma and I can't be called Nana as he has two of those already so I am Abuella (spanish for nana).

    I home school my 4,5 and 14 year old, I have home schooled for 4 years now, at first i made it all too difficult for myself and used to spend every waking hour concentrating on lessons, projects etc. This year I decided to sign my 14 year old up to an online GCSE's course where he is studying Biology, Maths and Sociology. I am now thinking maybe this was the wrong thing to do as I really do not seem to spend time with him doing his work. I am a firm believer that life experiences are the most important thing in a child's life.

    I am new to home schooling young children so teaching them to read, write etc and I am finding this very hard we use a programme called Reading eggs which offers reading and maths. If anybody does have any advice on how to make learning to read easier I would love to hear it as I feel to be struggling lots.

    We do lots of fun activities such as climbing, visiting places of interest, my son goes to Cadets, we have horses and love spending our time out doors. The younger children have 4 chickens between them, they love it as two of them we hatched ourselves and they are very close to the children :-)

    I have rambled enough now and I am glad to meet you all

    Claire xxx

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  3. #2



    We tried Reading Eggs with little success. We used Bob Books (put out by Scholastic in the U.S) and Explode the Code workbooks early on. I found some videos on YouTube that were funny, Mr Thorne Does Phonics. For us it was novel, as my son had been watching so much British tv, that he was talking with an accent at times. I also used the book, The Reading Lesson: Teach Your Child to Read in 20 Easy Lessons was helpful.

    But what I think helped the most was just reading a lot to him. We read all the time.

    For maths, I have decided to unschool that part until we get to algebra. I think I am enjoying it more.

    I agree, experiences are much more important to us too.

    Welcome to the forums!

  4. #3
    Senior Member Arrived RTB's Avatar
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    Feb 2012


    Hello and welcome!

    Regarding reading - what Mariam said and I'd also suggest Progressive Phonics (which is free).
    DS 15, DD 13
    Year 9

  5. #4
    Site Admin Arrived Topsy's Avatar
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    Apr 2009
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    SO glad to have you, Mrsdno! I'm with you as far as the hands-on learning. It's the best! The biggest thing with the reading is simply recognizing that yes, traditional school has a timetable for when a child is "supposed" to read, but there's nothing scientific about it. Some kids truly aren't ready at age 4 and 5, and that IS scientific. In my experience, a kid reads when he or she is ready. I have two boys. The older one really and truly taught himself to read at age 3. He was reading actual newspaper stories when he was 4. The younger one had ZERO interest in reading. We found out later he had some learning differences. But even with all that, he was still reading pretty well by age 6-7. But, when I pushed him to read earlier than that, nothing "stuck." He had to pass some kind of invisible milestone in his brain before he was ready. The greatest thing to do in the meantime is just make reading a BIG part of your daily life. Read-alouds, read-togethers, audio books, books strewn all over the place, reading apps that are fun, etc. etc.

    Thanks for taking the time to introduce yourself. I hope you'll hang out here at SHS here often!

  6. #5
    Senior Member Arrived TFZ's Avatar
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    Mar 2015
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    Hi and welcome! If reading isn't clicking at 4 maybe just concentrate on the fun stuff until your littlest is a bit more open to it. We used a huge variety of materials to learn to read, but my oldest was dying to learn and that makes all the difference. I agree, reading together is the best. We listened (still do) to a lot of stories and poetry on tape. Read everything out in the world and point out letters. Sing letter songs, play with letters, make them in play doh. Make it fun Welcome to the forum, glad to have you here!
    I'm a work-at-home mom to three, homeschool enthusiast, and avid planner fueled by lattes and Florida sunshine. My oldest is 6 and is a fircond grader (that's somewhere between first and second, naturally), my preschooler just told me she wants to learn how to read, and my toddler is a force of nature.

    I gather all kinds of secular homeschool resources and share them at

  7. #6
    Senior Member Arrived Elly's Avatar
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    Jul 2013


    I'm originally from the UK, I've been in the US for about 15 years now I agree with what others have said about reading readiness. I tried to teach my son when he was 4 and a bit, and it didn't work at all, even though he was keen to read. Six months later, he picked it up easily. We used Bob books, too, and he'd done phonics at preschool. He learned to read quite easily (he was reading fluently within 6 months) when we finally did it, so I think our experience was perhaps easier than some, but he didn't learn at all when i tried and he was younger.

    Being from the UK, I would think it's valuable to do GCSEs to be able to have more options later, isn't it? Or do you mean maybe you should be teaching rather than letting someone else do it?

    4th year of homeschooling DS, now 9!

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Hello from Lancashire UK