Could you teach your baby to read?
Is your reaction, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is”? I claim that you can teach your baby, toddler, or preschooler to read–probably. What do you say to that?
I was thinking about how my essay on baby reading hardly made a ripple on its first day out in the world, despite being announced pretty far and wide. There was no negative reaction; but there was hardly any positive reaction. There was essentially no reaction. I’m not sure why that might be, but my best guess is that people don’t believe that there’s anything to it, not enough to investigate it much. To be sure, a 140-page essay is a bit much to expect an instant reaction to, but what about the video, the flash cards, and the presentations? Nothing! My explanation is that people simply don’t believe that there’s enough “to” claims like “your baby can read” to warrant much caring, much less investigation.
Let me make several claims, each of which I can back up with a lot of argumentation:
1. It’s not just me. Lots of people have done this. You didn’t know that? Read my essay, especially Part 2, and you’ll see.
2. It’s really reading. By age 2 or 3, lots and lots of kids who start out with Your Baby Can Read (YBCR) and the Glenn Doman method and similar methods are able to sound out new words, and understand age-appropriate books. By the time they enter first grade, those kids read well above grade level.
3. And no, it’s not because they’re geniuses. I’m not a genius, and I’m sure my little boy isn’t either. Lots of more or less average people have taught their little kids to read, and long before I found out about it.
4. I didn’t pressure my little boy into reading. If you think that’s the only way to teach a tiny tot how to read, you’re just mistaken!
5. It’s not impossibly difficult or expensive. Yes, I work from home and have some free time to help teach my little boy, but with the free materials out there now, and as the price of YBCR has come down, basically, you just have to spend some time doing this. With the videos, or with looking at some powerpoint presentations or my flash cards…well, sure, it takes some time, and probably some money…but it’s not a full-time job or anything. Think of it as a side-hobby. You could get deeply into it, the way I have, but you could have a nicely positive effect without doing so, I’m very sure.
OK, folks, what else can I say that will make you take this whole opportunity seriously?
About the author
I call myself an "Internet Knowledge Organizer." I started Wikipedia.org, Citizendium.org, and WatchKnowLearn.org, and ReadingBear.org. I write about education and the Internet from a broadly philosophical point of view.