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How 2 Sticker Dots Helped Our Reading Lessons

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Sticker dots for reading

In hindsight it seems so simple, but two tiny sticker dots have been a HUGE help to our reading lessons with our youngest. There are days when he gets overwhelmed when he sees his reading assignment for the day. And remember small progress leads to big improvement. While we don’t need to use this method quite as much anymore, it was one of those ‘aha’ moments for me – and may be for you all as well! 

Mark it Dots for Reading-7

The reading fluency sheets from the All About Reading program are absolutely wonderful, but Kaleb’s hesitancy comes at having to read “all those words” (as he puts it). While there really isn’t a lot to read on the sheets, looking at two 8.5” x 11” pages can seem like a lot since they aren’t in typical story format like the hard cover readers from the program.

Mark it Dots for Reading-4

Usually we break up a reading lesson to complete over a few days, but that initial shock can wreak havoc on a little boy’s emotions (smiles). We began using some tiny little Mark-it Dots to show the stop/start point in his reading assignments and I cannot tell you the WORLD of difference that it has made.

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The Mark-it Dots (found on Amazon) are reusable and lightly sticky, so you can put one dot at the starting point of the reading assignment and one at the end to show a definite end. Once the reading assignment is completed, the stickers can be peeled off and re-applied to the next day’s assignment.

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We have the 1/4” Mark-it dots  (there are larger 3/4” dots too) that come in a pack with rainbow colors. We use a green dot for our start point and a red dot for our ending point, and it has worked so very well!  

Does your child ever get overwhelmed reading? What tips have you found that help ease the anxiety? 



progress in small way adds up to big improvement - HomeschoolCreations

Every day sees progress in some small way that over time adds up to improvement. It’s hard to see at times, especially when we are a part of the small steps leading up to those larger strides. Yes, it requires perseverance and sticking through those (maybe many) rough days, but progress is being made. (read more…)


Interested in learning more about All About Reading – click here!

All About Reading Activity Bundle

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10 great tips for people who are teaching a struggling learner


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  1. wondermom says

    Thank you for posting about this! My son, too, has much frustration on reading fluency days. I am definitely going to try these dots out!

    • I need to find more place to use them! I actually split the pack with a friend so she could do the same on her reading fluency pages. I may use them on other worksheets each day as well – or for our older son and his reading time too.

  2. Jennifer @ Milk & Honey Mommy says

    Jolanthe, your post made me smile as I remembered some of my son’s (also seven) comments about the amount of words on those pages. It hardly looks like a lot of words to me and I see absolutely no reason why he can’t read the page from top to bottom in one sitting. I guess as a new reader, it can be very overwhelming.
    I really like your idea and am going to see what sticker-like items I already have on hand (frugal me) to use on those pages to note starting and stopping points. I believe that it will make a positive difference to him. I may even let him mark his stopping places.

    • Crystal Nichols says

      I know what you are saying about how it looks to us. I find myself getting upset because he is whining about something when to me it is really easy and would only take about 3 minutes to do. I have to remind myself that I have been doing it for many years, whereas he is just starting to learn how.

    • Exactly, Crystal. This has helped cut down on the whining so much – even though it might be the same exact amount of reading that he would have originally been asked to do. You have to love it! :)

  3. Amy McWilliams says

    my son too…I have photocopied fluency pages and cut them up, sometimes I glued them onto flash cards and had him read a certain amount of flashcards, I have written them out on a dry erase board, drawing start and end points on the pages, I have tried lots of things. All thing worked for awhile and he has slowly worked up to finally being able to look at the whole page and work through it. Level 1 fluency pages seem to have more on them than Level 2 (though we are just a few lessons in)
    My son even struggled with the readers at the beginning and I would write out what was on each page, he’d read it and I’d show him the picture in the book. We then moved up to a bookmark. We still use the bookmark. It has to go at the end of the story he is reading so that he knows there is an end and not feel he has to read the whole reader.

    • Crystal Nichols says

      Awesome ideas. I think I might try some of them too and see which one works the best.

    • That’s a great idea, Amy! Those fluency pages really make a difference in reading confidence, so I definitely want him to work on them! There’s already been a huge leap in his reading since we’ve gone back to the fluency pages from the start. He’s sounding out fewer words out loud now and thinking things through before saying them out loud. :)

  4. Crystal Nichols says

    I LOVE this idea. My son is hates having to read “all those words” too. I am going to try this out.

  5. Great idea!! Sammy loves to know how much of those pages we are going to do also. We have also started putting stickers or check marks on the words he has read. That allows him to see the progress as we go through the words.

  6. Cute! For years, we have used Sticky Tabs for a similar purpose in all kinds of subjects–they work great as book marks or to show where to start and stop reading in a reader, science book, history–whatever. They are like Sticky Flags, only sturdier for lots of re-use. I hadn’t seen the dots before, great idea. Love reusable stickies!

  7. I love this idea. My 6 year old refuses to read, and I think its a mix of overwhelmed perfectionism. He completely shuts down. I haven’t pushed it, but try and find games to keep things going. But I should try this idea. I plan on using All About Reading (because of your reviews!) for his 1st grade reading next year. I can’t wait…hopefully he will be more enthusiastic! :)

  8. I’m using the bigger ones to mark words Malachi misses as he has no trouble reading the whole sheet, but I didn’t think to use them for Eliana – she has a hard time getting through them. I usually just put a gummy snack at the end of each line. :D I ordered some though because I can also use them with Bo. Thanks so much for sharing!

  9. Love this idea! When we started AAR, I didn’t know the lessons didn’t have to be done in one day. It took us more than an hour, sometimes 2, I don’t even know, I wasn’t keeping track. It was painful. After I found out it’s helpful to break up the fluency sheets (hallelujah!), I copied them to be one-sided & cut them into manageable chunks. My daughter saw it as a puzzle & insisted on piecing it back together. LOL. So now I put things on the back, print out a (draft-quality) family picture or snapshot, draw a treasure map and hide our treasure chest for her, or sketch picture clues that I then hide all around the house & she has to read them to to follow the clue to the next one, finally finding the treasure. But all that is very time consuming, so I was *just* looking for a way to cut down my prep work.

    • On another note, I think I would use those dots to mark her math worksheets, when a problem is wrong. Then when she fixes it, and I recheck it, she can remove the dot. It really bothers her when she gets something wrong, so she tries to erase the evidence after she gets it right. :)

    • That is a great idea!! I have one like that too. Come to think of it, they would be great to use on writing assignments as well when you don’t want to mark up the paper and have them rewrite it all! Thanks for the inspiration!

  10. SunnyDay says

    Thanks for posting. My son has had frustration with this also. I’m excited to try this.

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