I am doing reading lessons with Oliver now, just like I did with Colin and Gabe. He recently finished 25 reading lessons, so he got to choose where he wanted to go on a date with me. Oliver immediately said Chuck E. Cheese and then a couple of days before he changed his mind to Discovery Place. We got all packed up to go, and I thought, “Hmmm, I should make sure our pass hasn’t expired.” Sure enough, it had. So I (easily) talked him back into Chuck E. Cheese.
Carina fell asleep on the way there and I was able to just put her carseat straight in the stroller so she stayed asleep for the first hour or so that we were there. We had the place to ourselves, and had a great time. Oliver surprised me with his baseball throwing skills, loved playing air hockey, and did NOT love the rollercoaster. He also conquered his fear of people in huge animal costumes and gave Chuck E. a high five and a tentative hug. Carina was so not cool with that.
In case you are wondering about the reading lessons, I use the book, “Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons.” I taught Colin and Gabe how to read using the same book. I like it because it requires NO prep work and each lesson is short enough that even the youngest wiggler can usually manage to last through it. I keep a chart with 25 spots. Each day they get a sticker and at the end of 25, 50, and 75, they get to go on a date with me. Sometimes I have a daily incentive too, like they get to play the Wii for 20 minutes after they finish a lesson.
Oliver is a little sick of the lessons right now. He was really motivated by the Wii and stickers in the beginning but by around number 19 or 20 I he didn’t care about that anymore. I had to convince him that he was super close to the date to get him to do a lesson every day. I am not too surprised by this. He is still young and has a very hard time sitting still and focusing when its something that doesn’t excite him. He doesn’t see where all of this is going, reading-wise. With each of the boys I have seen a point where the concept of reading really “clicks” and they get much more excited after that. He has not reached that point yet, the novelty has worn off, and he is now 23 more lessons away from a date, so we will see how often I can convince him to do a lesson.
I hope it doesn’t sound like something horrible that we are trudging through. Doing these lessons has been one of my favorite things to do with the boys. In the end, they are really happy to have accomplished the monumental task of learning to read before kindergarten. It is a great bonding experience for us, and I love sharing the learning process with them.