Freddy has been trialing the Lexia Reading Core 5 home reading course. Doing a minimum of twenty minutes three times a week, is proving just about right for him. He remains a bit reluctant, until he actually starts a session, and then he really enjoys the word games. He has powered through levels 3 and 4 and is currently half way through the fifth level. Every time he completes a level he gets a certificate, which he proudly takes to school to show his teacher!
In addition to the certificates, I get a fortnightly progress update, giving the time spent on the program, his present position against chronological age expectations, his catch up rate and the time expected to complete the course. I am delighted to see the rate that he is now catching up to his peers. The support team are there to also offer advice and give ideas on how to further encourage the child to maximize the impact of the reading course.
Each level has a different fun theme from the rainforest to the Scottish cliffs, and has characters that help make the games fun. The content of the levels gets more advanced as the child progresses and the format of each section changes to make it more of a challenge. If a mistake is made, the child is taken back to consolidate their knowledge before moving on. At the end of each game, the child is rewarded by a fun animation.
Children learn to recognise and spell high frequency sight words; recognise, blend and segment phonics in words; learn sequencing of stories and learn vocabulary. The progress of the games in the levels is clearly displayed, giving the child the incentive to keep going.
Freddy is definitely getting to grips with recognising the beginning, medial and end sounds of words. This has improved his ability to read lots of different words. He is still a reluctant reader when faced with a physical book, but I'm sure he will make the connection between what he is doing online and actually being able to read independently. I think a lot of his reluctance is down to confidence after his difficult first year at school because of his eyesight. The home reading course is definitely making him more interested in reading words, so it'll just be a matter of time before that translates into reading stories for his own entertainment.
I am delighted that Freddy has been moved up a group in the phonics lessons he does at school and his teacher has reported an improvement. Fingers crossed, all this extra work will help him make the leap and he will soon be a confident and fluent reader.