My little Princess is a reader! And I'm glad that she loves reading. Even when she was a little toddler, she expressed interest in reading. Now, being 4 year old (almost), she has already started reading. She recognises most words that are introduced in the books. Currently, she uses the Peter and Jane series books as her readers in class. They have not started any REAL readers as yet.
Peter and Jane series introduces words through repetition of the sight words. Some key words are used ever-so-frequently that children who are exposed to the book recognises these words and read them so confidently after much repetition.
Some children learns to read through pictures. They see a picture and they verbalise the picture with words that they know, not necessarily "reading" the words.
Well, what method works? Different methods work best for different kids. For me, I believe learning phonics sounds is very effective. The children will learn the different sounds of each letter. REAL kids introduces the phonics sounds of the alphabet through Jolly Phonics. Well, as for high frequency words... words that are being used frequently but not necessarily can be introduced phonetically, I do recommend using Peter and Jane and something alike. Hahaha! Currently, Sarah's my guinea pig!
I didnt know her kindi uses Peter and Jane until I send my girl over there. It started just last week, ie about 6-7 weeks since she started school, that I realised that she IS reading Peter and Jane. She came back one day and went to her book shelf. She took a few Peter and Jane book, ie 1a, 1b and 2a. I was just observing her as she did all that herself. And she started "reading" on her own.
When she has gained enough confidence, Sarah told me she wanted to read in front of me. After reading book 1a, she later took 1b on her own and tried to read. I think she did it pretty well. I then decided to "test" her and point words randomly for her to read. Earlier, I closed the pictures to test if she relies totally on the pictures to read. Hehehe. This mummy ar... Anyway, this is another of her great milestones. She is now learning to read and she is enjoying every moment of it. Every evening when we come home from work/daycare, she would go to her room, get some of her books and read while I do my cooking. Way to go, girl. Am really proud of you! :)
Here's a video of little Sarah reading Peter & Jane... and also, mummy's "random test". kekeke. My apology that the video + audio don't seem to be in sync.