Positives for Your Child!


Here’s a tidy little list of positive things you can say to your child to make his or her day!  (Try to make it 4:1–four positive comments to every critical one.)


  • I knew you could do it.
  • Now you’ve got it.
  • You’re on your way.
  • Nothing can stop you now.
  • What an imagination.
  • That’s got to feel great to accomplish that!
  • You must be very proud of yourself!
  • You figured it out.
  • You’re really growing up!
  • I love you!

Make your child’s day–give him/her all the positives you can think of–and while you’re at it, enjoy how great it makes YOU feel to give them!



Homework–How to Maximize Gains


Provide these and see what happens:

  • A quiet place to work.
  • All materials handy and ready to go (pencils, paper, calculator, etc.).
  • A set time each day to do homework.
  • A positive attitude from you that your child can sense.
  • A good example (get out the checkbook, read a book).
  • Guidance from you, not answers.
  • Cooperation with your child’s teacher.
  • Refrain from too much involvement.  Let your child do it.
  • Stay up-to-date by checking your child’s classroom website.
  • Help do the hard homework first.
  • Let your child take breaks to help them focus better.
  • Reinforce the positive effort your child puts in.

Good luck and have a great year!


Tips for Using Phonics for Reading

  • Copy placement tests ahead of time.
  • Use pointing to letters or words when you teach to keep students attentive (in the script.)
  • Go through activities OUT LOUD, then have students write answers.
  • Teach it 4-5 days a week, on CONSECUTIVE DAYS, if possible, for best results.
  • Use delayed response feedback (wait until the student starts the sound of the word you want him to read and then join him by saying the word with him) to encourage strong reading skills, independence and success.
  • Use items like individual white boards for daily spelling reviews.  Use short amounts of time at the beginning of each lesson to quickly review the concepts taught the previous day.
  • Struggling readers are more helped by basic comprehension questions (who, what, where, when) rather than higher order questions (why, how).

Merging “Phonics for Reading” and “Language!” this Fall


Here’s the new framework for when to teach Phonics for Reading in conjunction with Language!  Let me know how this works for you!

(You will placement test your students so you should use this format with the ones who will start at Level One.)

First teach Level One Phonics for Reading Lessons 1-15.

Then teach Language! Units 1-3.


Phonics for Reading Lessons 16-25.

Language! Units 4-6.

Phonics for Reading Lessons 26-30.

Language! Units 7-15.

Chances are, at this point, your students will merge right into REWARDS from here, so follow the plan set out for teaching REWARDS and Language!  If you have any questions, feel free to contact me or list a question or comment after this post.






Summer Ideas to Spark Your Child’s Interest (#15)


summer-web-grfx_2013The Big Summer Read booklists from Reading Rockets will help you and your child choose books that are at just the right reading level or interest area.

Better yet, download their two page handout version of the list! Have the list in-hand while visiting your local library.