As a homeschooling mom, one of the subjects I dislike teaching is PHONICS. I hate phonics. Unfortunately, so does my son.
This year I've leaned more heavily into the Charlotte Mason realm (living books, few texts and even fewer tests) and tried to apply it to my classical approach. This seems to have worked well, except in phonics where there isn't really a good way to do this other than by brute force.
I knew one day I would regret not being in the military because I can't do the heavy lifting. Phonics in our house gets contentious every few days. My son gets put on black out and loses privileges, then the rest of us suffer because of the restrictions we have placed on him impact us. I haven't found a solution to this.
However, last night as we were carving pumpkins a moment that will live in infamy occurred. Actually, it's a moment that I will remember for a lifetime.
My son and hubby wanted an anatomy book because they wanted to carve a skeleton-looking face on the pumpkin. I dug out a colorful anatomy book I had and off my son went to design a face. After hubby drew the pattern on the pumpkin, my son and daughter were sitting on the floor with my son showing his sister some of the pictures and telling her about them.
Then they got to the tongue. My husband and I were only half-paying attention to them when we heard, "These are the taste buds. This one is sour, this one is salty, this one is salty and so is this one. This one is sour." How did he know which ones were salty and which ones were sour?
He read the headings on the picture.
Aside from the arm-twisting moments when we have him read to us, this is the first time he's read something for pleasure (that I know of.) I don't think he even knew he was doing it. He didn't even have to sound out the words the way kids do when they are first learning to read...he just confidently read it and shared it with his sister.
I think that gave me a second wind to tackle phonics again on Monday. The relief of potty training pales in comparison to a kid who is finally taking off with his reading.