Thursday, August 14, 2008

Suburban Obsessions #28 -- Meet the Sight Words

I know it's a parenting cliche, but The Ambassador is a sponge. He'll cruise for a couple months at a time, then experience a learning explosion that leaves me floored every day with the number of new things he's doing, saying or thinking. Naturally, we encourage him as much as possible. It's not a formal teaching process, but we incorporate learning into everyday experiences like telling stories, singing songs and doing crafts.

Over the past six months, The Ambassador has shown more interest in shapes and numbers, but recently, letters have begun to get interesting. So I was pretty excited when Parent Bloggers Network asked me to review "Meet the Sight Words". (A new video is always welcome in our house. It makes fingernail trimming so much easier.)

"Meet the Sight Words" teaches kids some of the most common "sight words" or "instant words" - the words that new readers often find frustrating until they're memorized, because they don't follow basic decoding rules. The 40-minute DVD covers some of the most frequently used sight words like "of", "said" and "for". Each word is shown on the screen by itself and then used in an animated scene while the word is repeated over and over.

While The Ambassador was initially interested in the DVD, I noticed his attention waning after the first couple of words and he wandered off to find crayons and do other things. The animation in "Meet the Sight Words" is fairly slow, and he's used to following shows with a little more action and dialog like Blue's Clues, so that might have been part of the issue. But as I watched him closely, I think he simply might not be ready for it. While the age range on the DVD is 15 months to six years, and The Ambassador is now two, I don't think he's fully engaged enough in reading and letters to watch the entire video yet. I briefly ran the DVD by a friend's daughter who is three, and she clapped and repeated every word on the screen.

I'm going to try "Meet the Sight Words" again in a few weeks and see how The Ambassador does with it then. In the meantime, I think he'll love Preschool Prep's other videos, "Meet the Letters" and "Meet the Numbers", so I'm going to order those and add them to our collection. I suspect they'll be closer to his development level, and I'll let you know how they fare!

If you think your budding reader would enjoy "Meet the Sight Words" or any of Preschool Prep's other titles, you can order them here, along with books and other learning tools that compliment the DVDs.

Oh, and hey! If you're new to Suburban Obsessions, come check out my real blog at Missives From Suburbia.


Caffeinated Cowgirl said...

Wish I'd had these when my kidos were younger. I agree on your assessment; Ambassador may find them exciting on an entirely different level in a few more months. We're all pretty partial to the Leap Frog DVDs, they range in age & level of concept.

LceeL said...

My kids have always like 'Wordy' things. i think it runs in the family.

Effie said...

Well written article.