WHOLE-WORD READING PROGRAMME BY DOMAN
WE HAVE OFFICIALLY COMPLETED ALL THE SIGHT WORDS FLASHCARDS
In the previous post I said that I had started doing less and less daily “sessions,” which also means having less and less cards per day. After a few days we were left with 3 sets, 5 cards in each instead of our usual 4 sets. I decided we would manage to do these although nothing had changed in Maja’s attitude.
During the day she demonstrated a “zero” interest in the cards. However, we had our enjoyable moments with the cards in the morning and in the evening. It often happened that Maja had so much energy after supper that she went to bed at around midnight. As she seemed interested in the cards in the evening and at night I managed to present all that I had planned for a given day. Despite the fact that we had less cards per day, we completed the part of the whole-word reading programme almost according to the plan.
I have read Doman’s books from cover to cover but I tend to forget things. That’s why I return to his books from time to time to revise my knowledge. Last time I did it, I came across the information which I had forgotten that after we introduce sentences we need to speed up with the flashcards meaning that we should retire 2 cards and add 2 new cards daily. I followed this suggestion almost at the end of our adventure with the cards. With an exception of the last they when we were away on a trip, I managed to present all the cards I had planned to show. I am wondering if it is possible that Maja’s disinterest in the cards resulted from the fact that she was simply bored because I was introducing new material too slowly.
I am really happy I have managed to complete this time-consuming step of Doman’s programme before returning to work. It was my second day at work today. I didn’t return for long, though. I am a teacher after all and we have holidays quite soon. However, I know that if I had started working earlier I wouldn’t have been able to do as many “sessions” with the cards as I did. When we add reading and maths “lessons” together we get number 18 and this is the number of “sessions” I usually managed to complete on a daily basis. This may sound crazy but it sometimes happened that we had such a “session” every 15 minutes. And this is not the only thing in our daily life. We have also been reading books, “having a chat” and playing various games.
The picture below sums up our reading programme up to this moment. You can see the very first cards taken from the set of 15 cards which I myself created, and then the ready-made ones which gradually change colour and size. I have presented over 400 cards to my baby as this is the number of word cards, phrase cards and cards with sentences that I have in my set.
PERSONALIZED BOOKS IN WHICH …
…Maja is the main character. We could have started these earlier as according to Doman’s book „How to Teach Your Baby to Read,” we can start this step of the reading programme after a child knows 50-70 words which is tantamount to the same amount of cards shown. This means we could have started even before introducing more complex sentences. However, I decided to wait until all the cards have been completed because my baby is so little.
I have created a book about Maja for Maja according to Doman’s principles. I have modified his suggestions a little bit:
– as Maja has already seen the cards with the most complex sentences written using the smallest possible black font, the words in our books are black (Doman suggests red because after completing 50-70 words there are many red words left; we are past this step)
– in accordance with Glenn Doman’s suggestions book that I have created consists of Maja’s pictures as illustrations and the text constitutes the description of these illustrations,
– the text and illustrations are separate: there is a sentence on one page and the matching picture on the other; we have to turn over the page to see the picture so it doesn’t interfere with the text,
– one chapter needs to be limited to 10 pages at the maximum and that means 5 sentences,
– due to technical reasons the letters are 1 ” tall. I tried to make them even bigger but there wasn’t enough space. Doman says that if a baby is under 2 years old we need to stick to 1″ or 2″ font. It is a huge difference to me and his suggestion is really imprecise. If a child is over 2 years old the letters can be around 7/8″. I sometimes have the impression that, on one hand, Doman encourages us to start as early as possible but, on the other hand, some of his suggestions seem to be for older children. For example, only older kids are able to play with words and make phrases or sentences using separate words on different cards. Doman suggests doing this as a part of his reading programme.
I have got 8 chapters ready for our personalized books If Maja likes them, I will think about more. I have some ideas to include using Maja’s pictures such as feelings. I have started collecting Maja’s matching photos for this purpose.
The pictures below show the final stage of creating mini booklets for Maja – laminating:
PLAYTIME WITH WORDS ACCORDING TO DOMAN
It is impossible to remember all Doman’s suggestions included in three of his books which I have read so I reread fragments of them from time to time. Quite recently I wanted to make sure that my personalized book for Maja is in accordance with Doman’s principles. By chance, I came across his suggestions when it comes to games and other activities helping children to remember different phrases. Although I forgot about it completely, I have unconsciously realized two of his three suggestions:
– presentations of cards with phrases and simple sentences,
– creating a personalized book.
I remember Doman’s words: „a wise mother will use not one, but all three” suggestions. And the third one sounds interesting – jumble sentences. I have all phrases and sentences on one piece of paper. To avoid cutting it off and separating the words I prepared a set of separate cards with the word “is.” Then, I chose 5 nouns and 5 verbs from the set of single-word cards. What follows is pure fun according to Doman. We create sentences such as: Mummy is jumping. We let the kid create his or her own versions changing the verbs and nouns from time to time to keep the game fresh.
My little Maja won’t probably be able to make a sentence from single-word cards. She can chew them at her best 😛 However, we will see. Maybe she will surprise me. Anyway, this is the plan:
1. A personalized book about Maja 3 x daily for 5 consecutive days.
2. Playing with words/ Making sentences 3 x daily for 5 consecutive days.
After 10 days we will have another chapter of a personalized book and after 15 days more jumbled sentences and so on. If it turns out that Maja is not very willing to do this, we will stick to books only and we will try this again when she is a bit older.
MATHS ACCORDING TO THE DOMAN METHOD
I was planning to spend only 2 weeks doing fractions. It took much longer. After two weeks we exhausted all possibilities with dot cards from 1 to 100 of the following fractions: 1/10, 1/9, 1/8, 1/7, 1/5, 1/4 i 1/6 and I suddenly realized that we hadn’t covered fractions such as: 2/3 , 3/4 etc. This was probably due to examples provided by Doman in his book (I elaborated on this here). After all, these are examples only and we can always go further. Because of that I decided to continue working with fractions for one more week. I added problem-solving opportunities at the end of each session revising all that we had covered during the first two weeks.
An example of a problem-solving opportunity:
1) I showed 1/4 of 20 = 5
2) The task for Maja was to decide how much is 2/5 of 20.
3) I presented to possible solutions: 10 i 15 and she chose one of the cards.
Maja loves our games with dot cards. Yesterday, my mum was counting something with Maja in Polish. I was really pleased to hear that Maja is going to be a mathematician because she was really interested in the maths cards. This confirms what I feel. Maths is more interesting for my baby than reading.
We are going to go back to the step I skipped on purpose to spend less time on preparation for a while. According to Doman some numbers are so special that they have their own personality. 12 is an example of such a number. I has always been important for mankind for a number of reasons:
- It belongs to many number families as it is divisible by 2, 3 and 4 and this makes it easier to store things. That is why we have a dozen = 12, which is used when packing eggs. We get them in cartons arranged 3 by 4 or 2 by 6.
- A day is divided into two 12-hour periods.
- It is easy to divide 24-hour day, which is made up of two 12-hour parts, into 8-hour work shifts or even shorter 6, 4 , 3 or 2 -hour cycles of work.
- If we multiply the first four numerals this way: 1 x 2 x 3 x 4, we get 12.
- It constitutes one-fifth of another important number – 60.
Doman also focuses on number 60 because:
- It can be multiplied by 2,3,4,5, 6, 10, 12, 15, 20 and 30 which are all very interesting numbers.
- There must be something special in this number as both Babylonians and Mayans were interested in it and based most of their maths on it.
- We divide each hour into 60 minutes and each minute into 60 seconds.
Doman recommends more numbers worth researching and rediscovering:
- square numbers: 9, 64, 4, 16, 25, 36, 49, 81, 100
- triangular numbers: 3. 10, 36
- hexagonal numbers: 7
- prime numbers: 7, 2, 3, 5, 11, 13.
We can expand each category but I have mentioned only the numbers from Doman’s book “How to Teach Your Baby Math.” I am not a mathematician and I just hope I will suss each category out one day and I will be able to add more numbers. Or … maybe one of my readers will help with this.
At this step we research number personalities which are somehow special to us or to our kids. We take, for example, number 1 and focus on it until we exhaust all possibilities:
1 + 0 = 1
1 x 1 = 1
1/ 1= 1
1 – 0 = 1
4-3 = 1
10/ 10 =1
2 x ½ = 1
Fortunately, I do not need a calculator for this. There is a ready-made set of solved equations and operations on quantities 0-60 at the end of Doman’s book. I was using it when doing multiplication, addition, division and subtraction earlier. We revise the same operations again but this time we do not mix quantities. The result is always 1 when we focus on number 1.
I liked Doman’s idea to use poker chips instead of dot cards from time to time. I use plastic caps which I have collected over time with the aim of using them with my primary school pupils. Maja’s interest and curiosity is at its peak with maths presented like this I still use dot cards for large numbers like 60.
Have you found my experience useful? If yes, share. How about you? Are you already familiar with any of the steps of the Doman method presented here? I would be really delighted if you leave a comment and share your experience and ideas.
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I have created a Facebook group for parents doing Doman as I haven’t found any. This is just the beginning but I hope there will be more and more of us soon and that we will share our experience with one another