Glenn Doman’s reading program usually recommends showing a baby 5 sets of 5 cards, 3 times a day for 5 days, then introduce a new word in each set. When talking to TweedleWink, they felt this frequency for introducing new words was too slow. The rationale was that Glenn Doman’s program was originally for children with brain damage who needed to heal pathways before they could learn. To apply the same program to normal children seemed to be an overkill.
So I dropped back on the repeats. We would flash the cards twice, sometimes only once a day before introducing new words. Now I’m wondering if even this is too frequent.
Gavin’s attention span is very short and his patience with flashcards even shorter. So I follow a different program with him. I show him 5 sets of 10 cards, once a day for five days and then introduce a new set of ten cards at the end of the five days. Recently, I was showing Gavin one set that he had seen three times prior. When I held the cards up, he said, “I know this, Mummy,” and read the first couplet on top of the pile. When I went through the pile, I found that he recognised all the words except for two, which he made an educated guess at – for instance, instead of “evening”, he said, “every”, which means he recognised “eve”.
Shichida says that a two year old learns faster than a three year old, while a one year old learns faster than a two year old. Following this rule, Gareth should be picking up words even faster than Gavin, which means I must be boring him – I’ve been showing him new words at an even slower rate than Gavin! No wonder there are days when Gareth looks like he can’t be bothered to do flashcards. Looks like it’s time to step up the pace…
If your child doesn’t seem interested in your flashcards, you’re going too slowly or you are repeating the same material too many times. Even if it seems incomprehensible that they could learn that fast – well, you’d better believe it because they are. Whenever I think I’ve figured my son out, he surprises me.
Update: This post was written some years ago. Please see our updated notice on the Glenn Doman Program.