My first four children learned to read at the same time.
E12 was late to reading--her mind and body moved too quickly for the quiet work required when learning to read. Though we worked on it in fits and starts [because I had a hard time trusting that waiting was okay], school was more often than not a nature walk and long stories read to her at bedtime while she fiddled with small toys in her hands.
M10 and S10 read "right on time"--whatever that means. They were both about 5 or 6 years old and suddenly they were reading. I'm not sure how.
J8 was an early reader--just like her mama. I guess she just absorbed what she heard around her . . . or she taught herself. Whatever the case, she was wowing people with her reading skills from before she was four years old.
With all four of these "big" girls I did not have a whole lot of fun as they learned to read; it was either a terror-filled game of waiting, watching, and researching possible learning disabilities or it suddenly happened--seemingly overnight.
But with A5 I'm having the time of my life. She's learning to read slowly and progressively and with lots of lap time with mama. It's as if I'm getting a treat after a whole bunch of hard work.
She reads to me almost every day. And I certainly read to her every single day. We start with a verse from the Book of Mormon. Just one verse. Then we move on to little readers or even real books like Hop on Pop or The Cat in the Hat. It took her 3 weeks to read The Cat in the Hat, but she read every single word, and when she finished it was a moment of triumph!
For the past 3 years during family scripture time when it was her turn A5 repeated lines as we read them. Just last week she pulled out her large print Book of Mormon and read her own verse. It takes her as long to read her one verse as it takes all the rest of us to read our 8 verses, but she perseveres. I watch her in awe and almost weep every single night as her little body curls up with concentration as she sounds out words like "Zarahemla," "Amulon," or "dissension."
She is very good at "And it came to pass," "wilderness," and "people."
Yesterday while I worked on history with the bigger girls she and H3 curled up on the downstairs couch with a stack of books and A5 read aloud. I wanted to grab them and kiss them both. I settled for asking them if they were the cutest girls to ever live. They grinned. A5 said, "I read Hop on Pop . . . even the last part. I just put my finger over the letters to chunk them, and I did it!"
My heart is ever so full.