Published October 9, 2015

I try very hard to get creative when teaching my own children to read. When I say hard, I mean, how can I teach them to read in minimal time with maximum results?

I’m a busy mom and honestly, I don’t know any mom that says she’s not busy. Busy with work, busy cleaning, busy cooking, busy blogging, busy with 10 loads of laundry, busy being a chauffeur, busy keeping all of the kids in one piece!

For goodness sake, we are just trying to survive and keep our children alive and now they have to read?

That is why I have come up with NAPKIN READING…

NAPKING READING you ask? Yes! Every morning, I write little love notes to each of my children. Then after my little personal note, I teach them a quick lesson. With a child that is just starting to read, you will want them to read their special napkin in the morning, before you put it in their lunch box, so you can guide them if they have any difficulties.

WHY HIGH FREQUENCY WORDS? You will notice that my mini NAPKIN lessons combine the feature your child is learning as well as a few high frequency words. In order to read, your child must be fluent with his/her high frequency words. High frequency words are extremely important because they tend to be irregular and are not able to be sounded out or because they appear so frequently in text that your child should know the word automatically. These words make up 50%-60% of your child’s reading. If your child is fluent and automatic with high frequency words, he/she will be less frustrate while learning to read.

Example for a child learning short vowels:

High Frequency Words: I, love, you, the, is

Feature: Short ă words: cat, fat


I love you.

The cat is fat.



Example for a child learning blends:

High Frequency Words: have, happy, day

Feature: L Blend vs non-blends: plan vs pan; slip vs sip, blop vs bop


Have a happy day!

plan    pan

slip      sip

blop    bop



Example for a child learning digraphs:

High Frequency Words: I, love, you, have, school

Feature: digraph SH vs S vs H (it’s ok to use nonsense words) ship, sip, hit, shop, sop, hop, shot, sot, hot


I love you. Have fun at school!

ship     sip   hit

shop    sop  hop

shot     sot   hot



Example for a child learning long vowel ā:

High Frequency Words: have, happy, day, today, love

Feature: short ă vs long ā: can, cane, bat, bate, mat, mate, fat, fate


Have a happy day today!

can         cane

bat         bate

mat        mate

fat          fate



The feature words and examples are provided in each chapter of Teach Your Child To Read In Less Than 10 Minutes A Day! Stretch & Catch Words. By Amanda McNamara Lowe