Because P was reading material with ungraded vocabulary, she was encountering some complicated words. I was using the term "complicated" when the decoding was complex, and the "sound spelling" varied considerably from the written spelling. At one point, as P and I were decoding an especially complicated word, she said to me, "Do you know what kind of word that is?" I wondered if she was going to use the word "difficult" or "hard" to describe it, which I had been avoiding. But, when I asked her to tell me what kind of word, she said, "That is a Tricky word!" I told her that "Tricky" was a great word, because of the tricks involved in order to discover its "sound spelling." So, from then on, she or I would announce, "Tricky Word!"

After completing the book of poems, P chose to read a book about Bambi. Though the vocabulary was even more complicated than that in the first book, she persisted until she finished the last page. I hoped that she had truly learned all the words. She was happy, however, because she had read two books!

Next, I decided to help P choose the book. I had found a reading book with several challenging words per story, and questions to answer after each selection. She agreed to work in that book. I told her we would slowly read through the book, and I would help her learn to read every word. She eagerly agreed.

To Be Continued

Anita Landoll

Written by : Anita Landoll

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