- I have taught 4- and 5-year-old children (mostly ESL students) how to read.
- I use strategies proven to work, starting with English sounds, pairing those sounds to letters, and combining those letters to form words.
- For older children, I’ve shown techniques such as how to segment words into syllables, how to use Latin word bases, how to summarize paragraphs in the margins and how to use a printed thesaurus.
Research shows that the best way to learn English is to begin by pronouncing the 42 sounds of the English language. Next, a child needs to pair a sound with a letter. Then the child needs to be able to combine sounds to form little words, and to dissemble those words and use the same sounds to form new words. If a student does not read, that is where I begin.
If the student is already reading, I test the child on his ability to read lists of nonsense words to see if he understands phonics. Usually there are gaps, and that is where we begin.
For older children, especially ESL children, vocabulary is the issue. I explain words and sometimes suggest additional vocabulary work. For some children, encountering new words is the problem: how to pronounce them, what they mean, and what they mean in a particular context. Some students don’t pick up details when they read; others miss the main idea or inferences. Each student is assessed and his needs are the focus of the lessons and homework.
Got any questions about reading tutoring for your son or daughter?
Maybe you still have some unanswered questions. Use this contact form and I’ll get back to you with answers by email–or by phone (if you provide your Atlanta (GA) area phone number).