Newest Questions and Answers

My first-grader has only been exposed to a total phonic-based reading program since kindergarten. She is no closer to reading now than she was last year. She just does not get phonics. Is there any way to help her? -- Need a Solution
Answer: One thing that you can do to make learning phonics easier for your child is to introduce her to the word family approach.

I would like to know how to help my daughter master her math facts. She is currently in third grade and still uses her fingers. What do you suggest? -- Finger Counter
Answer: Educators have mixed feelings about children using their fingers as counters. At one time it was definitely discouraged; however, now many teachers consider it to be fine. As your daughter learns her facts better, she will rely less on her fingers to come up with the answer.
A good way to get your daughter to start using her fingers less is to get her some counters.

Could you explain the difference between skimming and scanning? -- Confused Student
Answer: Skimming and scanning are two very different reading techniques. Both, however, are very important in being able to locate information quickly.
Skimming helps you get a general overview. When you are skimming material, you look quickly over the information on printed pages. You definitely do not read all of the material. This involves training yourself to look for headings, highlighted material, material in bold-faced type and topic sentences.

My junior-high son is a terrible writer. With all of today's technology, is it really important for him to become a good writer when he is able to express himself so well orally? -- Curious
Answer: Even today, with all our advanced technology, it remains necessary to express one's thoughts in writing. For example, think of the importance of email in so many professional fields and the need to write memos, reports and instructions.
Unfortunately, for most children, writing is the weakest skill of the traditional 3R's.

I remember when college students had to pay little or no tuition at many state schools. This is definitely not the case today in our state. Do any colleges still exist where tuition is free? -- No Tuition
Answer: There are very few tuition-free schools. In this group are the military academies for the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and Merchant Marine. Of course, students do have to sign up for several years of duty after graduating from these schools.
Both Forbes and U.S. News & World Report magazines have short lists of tuition-free schools in recent articles and on their websites.

Helpful Websites


Need additional resources? Check out our list of websites which provide helpful information for parents on a wide variety of educational topics. View our list >

Find your Child's Reading Level


Check out how well your children can read.

By using the San Diego Quick Assessment found on the next three pages, you will quickly be able to gauge your children’s reading ability.

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