I visited Vital Years English Literacy Centre the other day to check out English classes for Ryan and maybe even for Raymund. I'm concerned about Ryan's reading skill and there is only so much I can teach him every night after work. I'm thinking of sending him to an enrichment class to brush up his English speaking and writing skills. I have a few places in my mind - Vital Years, Cosmotots IQD or the Cambridge Eglish For Life. I started off with Vital Years because there is one centre closest to my house. The other 2 are some distance away and I have visited Cosmotots some time ago. I would like to make some comparisons.
My earlier intention was to get a centre to brush up Ryan's phonics and sound blending. He is not exactly confident with sound blending. Vital Years English program offers a series of English lessons based on word recognition instead. What this means is that they will expose the child to words progressively (book series) and through repetition, get him to recognize the words accordingly. And Phonics is not part of the program. Is it a problem? Not exactly. I just feel that he should know BOTH phonics AND word recognition especially for common words. My hubby is of the same view too. Perhaps we are from the old school. But I feel that word recognition can speed up his reading skills while phonics can assist him in reading unfamiliar words. The Vital Years franchisee told me that both methods are just different routes to achieve the same. It is really up to the parents. So, how then can I brush up the phonics part? Hmm... Ideally, I'd like to find someplace that offers a good blend of both.
I have not decided which to send him too. I'd like to visit Cosmotots again and also check out Cambridge English for Life. Afterall, Vital Years will also be breaking for mid year term. If we want to, the best to enroll is mid June. I still have time.
As for Raymund, Vital Years offer something like a kindergarten for 3 year olds. Light English daily lessons for 2.5 hours. But my problem is transport especially for Raymund who is just 2.5 years old only and hyperactive. At times like this, I wish that I am a SAHM!