Step 4 Reading Immersion
You would think reading immersion would be the last step, but no we are only halfway there. Assuming you have a phonics system that has handled the vowel confusion you can immerse your child in reading. Initially, you start with one word games that check if they know the meaning of the word. One favorite is word find where you have a list of words after the child decodes one they search for the prize hidden there. In finding the prize they have demonstrated they understand the word. After a while their ability to blend will speed up and you can advance to blending phrases and then sentences. We use jokes, riddles, Simon Says among other things because we don’t know which games your child will enjoy.
Our main purpose here is to give lots of fun practice so that the heart of the child learns that reading is fun. Our secondary purpose is to give enough practice reading in context so the child builds blending stamina, practice and skill at jumping from the blended word to the spoken word. As an added bonus the child builds up his vocabulary with the new words he reads along the way. During this process your child will gradually start recognizing words that he or she doesn’t have to sound out. This increases the speed of reading which is the next step.