When I saw "at risk" for reading and writing on my son's 2nd grade report card last year, I freaked out. I didn't know why or what to do. I had A LOT of feelings. But besides extreme sadness, anger, and frustration, I knew I couldn't let my son fall behind in reading. After researching, I purchased a homeschool reading curriculum that I knew was strong in phonics, All About Reading, to supplement.
I'm in their support group on Facebook, and this week I came across something that's so prevelent yet so harmful.
A member was asking anonymously about the fourth sound of O, /u/ (as in love and mother) Her child wanted to know the rule. As a a mom, she wanted to know if there was a rule or if words that make this sound just needed to be memorized. She was worried about her child's reading and tempted just to drill the flashcards provided by the curriculum.
It's a completely fair question considering the majority of us neither know the rules of English (myself included until I started learning about how we learn to read) nor remember how we learned to read.
However, the truth is there ARE rules, even if we don't know them, making English NOT the crazy language that we've been taught to believe it is.
Once we learn the rules, we can become skilled readers and spellers, and there is no need to memorize whole words. English will make sense!
PS: In case your wondering, here's the answer. It's commonly referred to as the scribal o. In midieval times, scribes changed the spelling to avoid confusion when writing and reading m, n, and v. When o is next to an m, n, v, or th, it usually says /u/ (the short u sound). This pattern occurs in hundreds of commonly used words.
Want to learn more about how to help your child read? One of the biggest struggles I see parents of young readers face is worrying if their child will ever learn to read. That’s why I created a free guide full of mistakes parents make with struggling readers and how to fix them. It’s called, The 5 Biggest Mistakes Parents Make with Their Struggling Reader: https://thereadersdropinn.ck.page/43630d5646. (Again, it’s totally free!)
Thanks for reading, and I'll see you next week.