At ODA, we know that equipping our parents with the knowledge and tools to help their children learn is an important part of the early childhood education process. Towards that end, kindergarten teachers recently held an in-class, hands-on literacy workshop with both students and parents.
Teachers demonstrated several reading strategies as well as the multisensory sight word approaches used in the classroom. Students enjoyed sharing the lesson with their parents and showing how they put these skills into action.
The goal of these sessions was to have parents and children practice working together on reading skills that could then transfer to implementation at home. The techniques demonstrated included the Orton Gillingham approach to sight words, used by all ODA kindergarten teachers. In the Orton Gillingham method, words are taught as part of a multisensory approach, including the use of play dough to create their words. Each parent left with a little “bag of tricks” of their own so the same strategies can be replicated at home.
In addition, parents were shown reading tips to help their child. Tips included doing a picture walk, getting their mouth ready to sound out a word, and using their finger to track the words being read. Students also demonstrated the dynamic power of blending trays. Blending trays are used to make different words by simply sounding out each letter then blending them all together. This is an important skill for the smaller words students are currently learning, as well as for the multisyllabic word decoding they will encounter in the future.
Parents and children walked away both excited and empowered with reading tools they can use at home. This partnership between teachers and students helps prepare students for reading success.