L informed me last weekend that she wanted me to teach her to read "tomorrow". While it's not quite that fast, we are actively working toward that goal. I pulled out the first "pre-reading" workbook from the series used by most SDA schools (or at least it was, I think they're phasing them out now, this is the "new readers" that were introduced when I was in 4th grade). And set both girls going through it. L's willing to work on it for longer stretches, A generally "catches up", or gets close, when she is doing it though. Honestly, I think if L didn't want this, A would have no interest, and initially I just pulled one workbook out for L, but A came over & wanted to do it too, so she is. They flew through the first part, which was colors and shapes and such that they totally know. Now it's going through the alphabet (out of order, not sure what, if any, "logic" there is to the order the letters are introduced,but whatever . . .) focusing on sounds (so for each sound they have to choose which words that start with that letter) with some focus on upper/lower case (which they still struggle with some, p b d q is rather confusing, when you think about it LOL) and on writing the letters. So still stuff they pretty much know, but they do at least have to think about it abit.
They're enjoying that it lets them use scissors & glue regularly :)
L's enjoying it, but is wanting to READ, and after last week (or the week before?) when she was sounding out words on the way home from the library, I figured she could try the Bob books that we got awhile back when A was saying she wanted to read. When we first got them and they started "learning to read" with them, they were just memorizing the books, based on the pictures (not doing the sight reading I was hoping they'd learn). So I pulled those out at bedtime last night and L gleefully read the first 2. I couldn't find book 3 last night, and trying to skip to book 4 was abit of a jump, so we convinced her that Daddy wanted to hear the first 2 books. She's SO proud of herself, and so excited to be "really reading" (and she is, to the point of not looking at the pictures to figure out the word when it would be obvious). Last night for some reason she really struggled w/ Sam (would sound it out but then when she tried to "put it together" she'd transpose the letters & say Sma) but stuck with it, and finally got it. During her bedtime prayer she thanked God for "that word that I couldn't read, thank you for helping me keep trying until I got it" (or something along the lines), tonight she sounded Sam out easily & correctly, on the first try, and was SO proud of herself :)
A has no interest in the Bob books, and last night did the same normal "reading" they usually do by quoting stories they've memorized (and ad libbing when they don't remember), but tonight she did show me the book she'd been looking at (while L read her first story) and pointed out the words "Ariel" "and" "Flounder" now, obviously she knew the words from having memorized the book, but she was actually LOOKING at the words, which is a start :)
Now honestly, I'd be perfectly happy to wait a couple more years to bother with such things, I strongly believe in "Better late than early" when it comes to academics, but I also believe in letting kids learn at their own pace, even if that pace is faster than I think it should be LOL. So, if they get bored with such things and decide to back off, that's fine with me, but for now, we seem to be focusing more on the reading workbook than we are on the preschool curriculum, shrug :)