Today's Reading Tip: Don't Correct Every Error

If you have a beginner reader you know what a joy it is to listen to them sound out words and recognize sight words...but you also know that these tasks are tedious and mind-numbingly annoying to listen to! Yes, I said it.  I am a Reading Specialist and I often find myself wanting to speed along my beginning readers and offer suggestions for every word just to make it easier for me to listen to.  With that said, I know I must bite my tongue and left them apply all the skills I have taught them.

I am not by any means suggesting you do not correct errors, instead I am suggesting you correct errors on occasion so as not to completely discourage a child to read.

Here is what I usually do with my students:
  • If the child stops on every word (or every other word) to sound it out then the book is too hard to encourage independent reading, and you may have to help him so he doesn't get discouraged.
  • If the child makes an error on a word by leaving off a suffix (such as -ing, -ed, -es) and the story still makes sense, just let it go.  If it is a consistent error then mention the corrections after the reading.
  • If a student makes an error on a sight word-tell the sight word to him.
  • If the child says a name wrong-don't correct until after the story.
  • If the child makes errors every few words, but is reading at a smooth pace, just let him continue.  Then after the passage, have him go back to the words he missed and sound them out with you. 
These are just a few of the corrections I use.  Of course every child is different and you must use your own judgement before anything else, especially with your own child.

Disclosure: These are the tips I use-not necessarily the tips that you MUST follow. Please use with your own background knowledge of the reader.