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Yes, Your Baby Can Read!

Mishca joined us in church last Nov. 21 and as we were about to sing, a new song flashed on the projector in church. I had a moment to ask her if she knows what the song is. “He Knows My Name!'”she answered in a flash. She had not heard that song nor read that sentence anywhere, so it was a nice surprise for us to hear her read it.

Mishca started reading simple words at 1 year and 3 months and now at 4 and a half years old, she can effortlessly read simple sentences. We have not really started a formal reading program as her Kinder 1 home school curriculum is still in the alphabet and phonics  drill.
This is Mishca before turning 2.. .

 

How did she learn to read? I was a few weeks pregnant with Mishca when I discovered Baby Can Read on a visit to the US. I still remember how hard it was for me as a child of 4 or 5 to learn to read. It was a stressful time for me. I did not want my child to experience that so I told myself that I would try this video program on Mishca.

baby can read2

I bought the whole set from a Home TV Shopping lady at SM MOA. It contained 5 videos, 4 sets of books and flashcards for around P3500. She was short of 4 months when we started to show her the Baby Can Read videos once a day. Since she was very young, we made sure that she was far from the computer and that the screen was dimmed so she would not strain her eyes. We continued with the program when we saw that she truly enjoyed it, as evidenced by the smiles and coos, and not to mention the jumping-up-and-down, when we play the videos.

Baby Can Read teaches word recognition through the flash card method, except that it shows it in video form. It teaches by showing the word and then the item, animal or action associated with the word. Interspersed are music videos of popular children’s songs.

At seven months, we tested if Mishca can read by placing two different words and asking her to choose the word that she heard. She got it right 7 out of 7. Before this, I really did not believe that a baby can differentiate words that early. That is why, I supposed we waited for 3 months before testing her.

When she was around 9 months old, I noticed that she would stare at signage in church and there would be some form of recognition. By the time she learned to speak at around 1 year and 3 months, she would read the flash cards out loud. Mishca would also point at words and read them aloud. Her grandmother was thrilled when she pointed at her walker and read the word “Baby!” One time she pointed at my shirt and said “Jesus”. It was a WWJD (What Would Jesus Do) shirt. At the malls, she would recognize the word “Exit.”

Mishca Reading

 

When she was about to turn a year old, we also showed her Brainy Baby’s Alphabet video, which effectively teaches phonics. By the time she was 2, we graduated to Your Child Can Read, a series of 5 videos that has harder words and more sophisticated music videos, which I ordered from the Home TV Shopping Network. Nowadays, Mishca cannot really sit through an episode as it is mostly word flashing without any storylines. At her age, she is more interested in cartoons and documentaries. So I suggest that you start your child early on the Baby Can Read and Your Child Can Read programs.

 

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The beauty of this is we never have to sit her down formally to teach her to read. There is no rote involved. She just picks up words on her own. The most we do with her is to read her story books. And if she is interested to read a book aloud, we guide her in reading it.

A couple of years ago, I read that the company that produces Baby Can Read filed for bankruptcy after receiving a lawsuit questioning its claim that it can teach babies to read. I was truly sad for the company, as it does make reading easy and fun for young children. Good news though, the company had re-branded itself and is now called Your Baby Can Learn. Smart move! It still sells the same videos but under the new name. The deluxe kit (Your Baby Can Learn + Your Child Can Read videos, flashcards and books) costs $149.95.    It also has a Your Baby Can Discover Series that teaches babies about Math, Music, Colors, Shapes, Logic Patterns, and Prepositions! The sets can be bought online from the US but you can also buy digital downloads of the videos (www.yourbabycanlearn.com).  No need to call and order from the Home TV Shopping Network, which can be a pain since they keep your number and call you almost every other day! 🙂

Early this year, I discovered that Brillkids (brillkids.com) is offering a similar program. It’s called BrillKids Little Reader.  This is an Asian-American dad who developed an early literacy program for his firstborn. Brillkids offers a software that you can download and also flash cards and books. Different modules for music, math and foreign languages can easily be added to the software after an online purchase.

 

brill kids

I really recommend these early reading programs. Because of Baby Can Read, Mishca now has a deep love for words. And since we do not have to spend a lot of time studying, she has more time to be a child and concentrate on the things that interest her–nowadays it is pandas and surgeries. Can you believe she can sit through a brain surgery or liposuction video? This is definitely something she did not get from me!


 

 

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