We hit a major milestone this past year, everyone in our household is officially an independent reader! 

My littlest one was reluctant to read out loud or on his own, his thoughts were why would you need to learn when you have five people willing to read stories to you. He was doing well at phonemic segmenting (sounding out the letters) but his fluidity was lacking and that affected his confidence in reading out loud.

So I used a secret tool I have from my teaching days, I introduced him to the Elephant & Piggie Books.

I always let the young reader pick their character first, in my experience, Piggie is a favorite. My little one, not to my surprise, chose to read Piggie’s part and I am Gerald. I’m accustomed to Gerald’s expressiveness and so I read with gusto.

It’s hard for the reader not to want to engage. I mean, you are actually allowed to yell! It’s read aloud at it’s finest….or at least it’s most exciting!

The clean, and simple illustrations build confidence by bringing ease to clue deciphering and the expressive banter between Piggie and Gerald add a new level of fun to reading together.

It almost always works.