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Bob Books: Reading Overview


by Lynn Maslen Kertell


Beginning reading can be a time of great excitement and anticipation for your child, or a time of anxiety and concern, as he or she enters into this brand-new skill called reading. Having the necessary skills is essential for your child to have a successful first reading experience.


Knowing letter sounds is the best place to start. Brain research shows that whether learning by phonics (best choice) or another way, the brain makes connections between letter shapes and letter sounds. Therefore, make sure your child knows that letters represent sounds, and which sound goes with which letter. 


Then comes the thrilling step of sounding out first words. Look for three letter, C-V-C (consonant-vowel-consonant) words. Go slowly so the child has their own, real experience of sounding out each letter, then blending the sounds together into a word. Your child has now read a word! Keep on adding C-V-C words, until your child can read a sentence, or even a small book. Bob Books are specially written to include only C-V-C words, in a very simple format, so children will have early success.


Take time for plenty of practice and repetition. Use materials that progress slowly and gradually. Make sure there are plenty of opportunities for small successes in the process of mastering this very large skill of fluent reading. Children will slowly become more automatic, intuitive and natural as their reading skills improve.


Be sure and celebrate successes large and small as your youngster enters the wonderful world of reading.


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