For years, I have talked to teachers about how teaching children to read involves three key components:
1) Developing a positive attitude toward reading
2) Acquiring the skills and strategies you need to be a strong and successful reader
3) Developing fluency
Of course all of this occurs within a strong, supportive, and caring community.
I'm only talking about this because now I am actually living it myself.
I'm talking Spanish every Tuesday night.
I'm not exactly a beginner.
But I'm not all that terrific either.
Right now our class is working on preterite (past tense) verbs.
And it's really hard for me.
There are five of us.
And I'm pretty much the worst one.
My teacher is great.
Warm and supportive and caring.
We have wine and homemade tapas every night.
The people in my class are really nice.
And every week, when I go to Spanish class, all I can think about is, "I'm not very good at this. "
I make way more mistakes than anyone else.
My pronunciation is awful.
I'm the oldest person here.I'm the worst one in the class."
And because I keep talking to myself that way
I think I am making Spanish a lot harder.
I know I could learn Spanish a lot easier
If I would just relax and stop talking to myself like that.
It really is all about the attitude.
I need to remember that when I'm talking to kids who struggle with reading
because they live that every day.