My Spring Reading List!

After the heavier reading of Lent, I thought I'd like to continue some inspirational spiritual reading through the Easter season as well. 

Here's my book list!

Private and Pithy lessons from Scripture - Mother Angelica
Little Book of Life Lessons - Mother Angelica
Three to Get Married - Fulton Sheen
The Little Oratory
Diary Sister Faustina
Getting Past Perfect - Kate Wicker
The Words We Pray - Amy Welborn
Perfectly Yourself - Matthew Kelly 
Crossing the Threshold of Hope - Pope John Paul II

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Izzy eyes

Originally uploaded by elliemom.

After Calvin, Izzy has been my slowest kid to learn how to read. Jr. Analyst that I am I thought perhaps it was because Izzy had had such a traumatic birth. Perhaps even a slight bit of oxygen deprivation affected the centers of the brain that learned to read. That would explain why both Calvin and Izzy would be my slow readers.

But in addition to that, Izzy knocked out her top front four teeth when she was almost four years old. (I always thought it was ironic that after four sons, it would be the little girl that knocked out a tooth! Knocking out four at once was unbelievable.) That meant that Izzy had to learn to talk all over again. It's hard to imagine how much we need those front teeth to make sounds until they are missing, but it is very difficult to make the f, v, s, sh and some others that are escaping me. Izzy improvised. Instead of saying Food, she would say Pood. We knew what she meant.

The problem was that once her big teeth did grow back in, it was hard for her to start making the sounds correctly because she had trained herself not to. For some reason the K and g sounds were also difficult for her. I don't know if that has something to do with how the tongue has to be trained, but I know that Izzy says "Dirl" instead of "Girl". She can say "Girl" but she has to be coached, however, it's good to know that the ability to make those sounds is there.

Surprisingly despite Izzy's problems, she didn't come across as having a reading problem at first. We did pretty well through the first 30 or so lessons in 100 Easy Lessons to Teach Your Child to read. Izzy wanted to read a real book though, so when we got to about lesson 50 we jumped over to the Pathway Readers. That actually went pretty well too. I had some concerns though. Izzy could not remember the number or letter names or sounds. You could show her the symbol for 7 or 8 and she would guess at what that number was called. It was very puzzling.

After her reading exam with our reading specialist last year, Izzy stopped making progress in her reading. I took her right back to the beginning of the Pathway Primer and started over again. By our visit this year, Izzy was essentially right where she was the year before.

Our specialist then suggested that we start using her version of Writing without Tears and that I retrain her on all of the sounds of the alphabet starting with c, a, d, g, s, j and then moving on to l, k, f, t etc. She had to write these letters in the air, on the chalk board and finally on simple paper with out a lot of lines because if she is having vision problems the extra lines could help to confuse her.

We also went down to a special children's optometrist near Columbus for a complete eye examination. Izzy has excellent vision 20/20 for distance and 20/25 for near. Her visual perception was interesting. The doctor gave her two tests. On one test she scored as a 9 year old, but on the other only as a 6 year old! This was very unusual. Since she was borderline for needing a prescription the doctor went ahead and gave her one thinking that just that little bit of help and support would push her reading. She also has exercises to do with the geo board in making shapes and copying the shapes I show her. Additionally, she is supposed to do a lot of mazes and word searches. I have seen improvement already and she loves doing the work.

So today we pick up her eye glasses. We have already started reading from the Dick and Jane book which she loves. (I didn't want her to sit through the Pathway Primer for a third time!)

My next step is to find a good speech therapist hopefully without getting involved with the public school.


  1. My least one (a boy) is struggling with reading as we speak. It's so hard for me so see him struggle and it kills me when he gets frustrated and starts to tear up. His Daddy deals with that so much better - he seems to possess just the right mix of firmness and encouragement.

    I was an early reader, as were my two older daughters, so this has been a real education for me. Honestly, I've been afraid that he may begin to see learning as drudgery.

    I feel encouraged though, because my mother-in-law recently shared with me that both my husband and his brother struggled to read and required a lot of extra help and encouragement. They both turned out fine; my Hubby has a Masters in Computer Science and BIL holds his Doctorate in Biology and is a research scientist. They both still continue to learn new things - whether it be by gaining additonal certifications to keep competitive in the job market or learning a new skill just because they can. Both truly just love learning. Her sharing that was good for this Mommy's heart.

    Keep us posted on how Izzy (and you) are doing...

  2. Unless your insurance is a lot better that what is normal, avoiding the public schools is going to cost you a pretty penny. IME the best therapists aren't with the public schools -- they can make a whole lot more in private practice--but the ones they have are usually adequate, and if not, then put out the $$$, IMO.

  3. Thanks for submitting this post to the Carnival of Homeschooling.

    Wow, what a journey and what a story.

    I wanted to throw in, that you can do home speech therapy. I will try to find the name of the program that a friend of mine uses. The program was written by a speech therapist and it focuses on short therapy sessions. You don't harp on the speech issues all day, just short 'lessons'. My friend reports success with using it.


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