View single post by susansweet3
 Posted: Sun Feb 22nd, 2009 06:09 pm
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Joined: Tue Sep 11th, 2007
Posts: 312

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How very sad , Fan.  I have a great first grade teacher .  Not the prettiest that did all the cute name tags and everything but still a great teacher.  We did fun things in class and she taught me to read. 

I suspect I was reading of sorts before that .  My parents had placed books in my hand since I was in the crib.  We lived in a two bedroom home for my first few years  with my grandparents in one room and my brother, mom and dad and me in the other.  Mom says she always gave us books to "read" when we went to bed the same as she and daddy did.  I don't think my dad ever went to bed without a book to read before he slept.  It was the only time he had to read during the long days he had.

My aunt had given me the golden book dictionary for Christmas in Kindergarten.  It had the words next to the picture . It also had pages that had pictures of things like clothes with the name next to each piece of clothing.  I studied and studied that book.  I still have the book in the bookcase , the spine taped together with some kind of duct tape my mother put on it when the spine broke.

When the teacher, Mrs. Barnes said we were going to learn to read I was , "Okay now let's get this going ."  We were divided into the reading groups. and started with a big book on an easel.  Page one said Dick, then Jane , Then Dick and Jane and so on though the book til we knew the characters and the words.  I learned to read during the period of look say method.  I spend hours drawing boxes around the shape of the words to learn to reconized them. 

I don't remember any phonics til a workbook in third grade.  Then it had to do with syllables and where the accents went on the words.  Spend hours that year dividing words into syllables and putting the accent marks and short and long vowel marks on words .  Let me tell you I hated doing that.  By the way I was always a poor speller and still am .  Thank heaven for spell check.

We had a car that year that my mom could use so we also went to the library and got a library card.  From then on we went once a week .  I would come home with an arm load and read all week. 

I  discovered Lois Lenski somewhere along the line in first grade, her Mr. Small books, then later her books about young people around the United States.  I now own a set of her books that our school library was obsoleting . I liberated them.  Books like Judy's Journey,Cotton in My Sack,and  Paraire School which I read three times ,

I found Nancy Drew along the line.  My friends and I would trade them back and forth.  There was also a second hand bookstore in town.  We would beg mother to take us there .  I added not only Nancy Drew books to the growing collection of books but other finds along the way.  Mom rarely said no to a book.  In junior high my ninth grade English teacher introduced us to Tab books a scholastic book club. I would mark all the books I wanted and again Mom would rarely say no.  She did finally put a limit on the amount of money but still I was in heaven books now came to me.  By the time I was in high school one wall in my bedroom was covered with bookcases. 

When I taught I made sure my first graders got the advantage of Scholastic book clubs and several other book clubs that had monthly flyers.  I am sure some parents hated the day the flyers came home.  I was one of the worst offenders though.  I built my classroom library from buying those books.  When I retired I gave away many to the kids, donated many more to a school in inner city Long Beach and still have many in my personal library .  I still am weeding some out, sending them to my niece in Maryland for her classroom.

I admit it I am a biblio maniac  but truth be told I am the daughter of two biblio maniacs and the sister of another one .


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