Monday 15 February 2016
Reading the Signs (Adventures of L-Plate Gran)
When I was a year older than Little G is now, I apparently taught myself to read. There is absolutely no evidential proof of this; it is purely based on an ability to recite Orlando the Marmalade Cat word perfectly, while turning the pages at the correct point in the story. By the same token, You must be mad was reading at an early age as she could distinguish words like Exit, Pull & Push because we did a lot of shopping together. A lot.
Fast forward to today and upon such dodgy premises, I am pleased to announce that Little G can 'read', age nearly 2. OK, we are not talking War & Peace here, but something more basic: an ability to recognise most of her letters coupled with some of the words that she encounters regularly.
Generally, these words are associated with our weekly bus trips to Baby Rhyme Time. The bus has a big screen which lights up showing the next destination, and a friendly voice repeating it. Little G enjoys watching the screen light up and imitating the phantom bus voice. Cat, dog, cup may pass her by on a page. Childwickbury Estate, The Ancient Briton and Chime Square are old familiar friends.
She also recognises Stopping ... which comes up in red whenever the bell is pressed, and she will announce it out loudly, naming the 'S for snake ...and G for Grandma'. I am not sure if this really does constitute reading, but she takes great pride and enjoyment in what she can do, and gets very excited about it.
And that's the important thing, isn't it? I hope that when she is sucked into the dreadful Govian world of primary education, with its tick box approach to rote learning, and reduction of everything to 'modal clauses, noun and verb recognition', that she will not lose her lovely joy in words and stories.
I shall certainly do my level best to make sure she doesn't.
To be continued ... .....