How do I know my son is reading and retaining the words rather then just memorizing the story?

Amy - posted on 12/05/2011 ( 4 moms have responded )

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My son is 5 and in kindergarten, they have begun a reading program where they give the students different tools to read. Each week they read a book at school and then they send the book home to practice reading for a week. My concern is that my son is just memorizing the book while they read it at school so he's not really reading it, if that makes sense. How do I know?

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♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 12/07/2011

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My son learned the same way. At first, it is by sight recognition, and as they learn that C-A-T is cat, they also learn to sound things out.

Within 2 weeks of starting this program, my son was picking up other books and sounding out words. We also made sure at very young ages to start pointing out words on signs, businesses, etc, every time we were out anywhere with the kids.

But, if you are concerned, then do as others have suggested. Write some of the simple words down in a different context, and see how he's doing.

Katherine - posted on 12/07/2011

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Why don't you ask him questions about the story? Make sure he is comprehending?
Why do you think so and so did this? Do you think that? That's what I do with my first grader.

Denikka - posted on 12/06/2011

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Yea, I agree with Teresa. Use the same words, but write some of them out on a separate piece of paper. You can also change things up and get him an extra book, from the library or whatever, especially ones he hasn't read before. Even if he may not know all the words, he should be able to pick out some that he knows.

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