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BabyCAN Your
Reading Special

by Kua Kee Eng

Your baby does not need to wait till three to learn

how to read. Now you can start teaching your baby
how to read at THREE MONTHS OLD! Let’s see how
the ‘Multi-Sensory Reading Approach’ by Dr. Titzer
helps to kick start literacy for your baby.
Dr. Robert C. Titzer

I ’m so proud of my three-year-old daughter, Kar Man, as she could now recite A to Z, whether in
sequence or not, thinking that by being able to recite the alphabets individually, she could begin to read
— unfortunately it’s just the opposite. Kar Man could spell A-P-P-L-E, but she couldn’t pronounce
(phonetically) the word as ‘apple’. Most parents (including myself) perceive that teaching their children
to read should always begin with the basic ABCs and we tend to do it at age three onwards. However,
after attending a recent seminar, called ‘Your Baby Can Read’ by
Dr. Robert C. Titzer, a recognisable American expert in the
area of infant learning, my perception has changed. Why?
According to Dr. Titzer, who has more than 15 years of
teaching and lecturing experience, who had acquired his Ph.D.
in Human Performance from Indiana University, children
should be exposed to reading from three months old
onwards, the moment they have visual tracking ability
(when a baby is able to follow the movements of
an object with her eyes). He also stressed that
rapid brain development in a baby happens
between ages three to 24 months, thus
making it the best time to teach your
baby how to read through an
approach he developed, aptly called
the ‘Multi-Sensory Reading


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“Parents should interact with their babies as much as At first, infants and toddlers recognise written words based
possible and talk about things from the baby’s perspective, on numerous factors including the shape of the word and
using simple descriptive language. In other words, talk to the left-to-right order in which the words are portrayed.
your baby about what he sees, hears, touches, smells Most of the words are repeated in a different order, to
and tastes — your baby’s senses,” stressed Dr. Titzer. help them generalise from this early method of reading to
The brains of babies develop faster than older children’s a less context-dependent form of reading, which will
brain and there is more neuroplasticity (the ability of the facilitate children’s ability to recognise words in a new
brain to change or modify how it develops based on its context, such as in a book. Though the simple language
environment) in the early years, which is why exposure of and repetition in the video were specifically designed to
written language to babies between the age of three to teach language skills to babies and toddlers (aged from
24 months is essential and may eliminate most reading three months to five years), the video has worked with
problems in future. Not only adults like compliments from children six years of age and older as well. However,
Dr. Titzer suggested that parents should reduce the
others, but babies do too. Dr. Titzer urged parents to pay
number of other TV programmes, in order to increase the
attention whenever their babies make a new sound and
likelihood that their child’s attention will be maintained
reward him or her by repeating the sound, and preferably
over the several months that may be necessary for their
with a big smile! Parents are encouraged to regularly
child to learn to recognise the words. You may take a look
introduce as many new words as possible, which are
at the sample videos, parents’ testimonials and other
commonly used in their daily lives, such as a ‘cup’, ‘door’, related information via www.infantlearning.com. ‘Your
‘key’, and many other objects in their home and Baby Can Read’ series of books and videos will be
surroundings. Parents are also recommended to read available at all Metrojaya stores nationwide from the third
books to their children as part of their daily routine and week of June 2007 onwards. The ability to read
always point to the words as they read. Or better still; let effectively would be a life-long benefit for your child, as
your child point to the words as you read to her. your child can acquire unlimited knowledge, information
and skills through reading, regardless
Overtime, you may switch to a more complex language. of what reading materials or
Babies pick up patterns of a language through their resources they could be.
observations of how the adults speak, and they tend to Why wait, when you can
be attracted to voices of a higher pitch. Sometimes you start ahead! PH
may notice that your toddler may add an ‘–ed’ or ‘–ing’
at the end of a verb (such as ‘called’ or ‘jumping’ etc.) !
without actually knowing whether it is a past tense or
continuous tense, yet, they are able to grasp the context
on how it is being used. According to Dr. Titzer, reading is
20 BOXES of
‘Your Baby Can Read’
the most important skill a child learns as it helps a child VCD Sets
succeed in school and in life. Children who could read
when they enter school have higher self-esteem and
Up For Grabs!
studies showed that early readers stay ahead of children Answer the following questions correctly
and stand a chance to win a box of ‘Your
who are taught later in life. Dr. Titzer strongly suggested Baby Can Read’ VCD set worth RM 99.90.
that parents should be actively teaching their babies and Hurry, only 20 winners will be selected!
toddlers written language during the child’s first few years,
1. ‘Your Baby Can Read’ series of books and videos will be available at
as studies show that this natural window of opportunity all Metrojaya stores nationwide from the third week of June 2007
for learning language begins to close by age four. Initially, onwards. ( True / False )
2. Name the expert who developed the ‘Multi-Sensory Reading Approach’
Dr. Titzer had created this programme to help his daughter, into a series of books and videos called ‘Your Baby Can Read’.
Aleka to read during her infant years and the results were
remarkable. Aleka was able to read more than 100 words 3. Complete this slogan in less than 20 words.
by her first birthday and by the time she was two, she ‘Your Baby Can Read’ series is an ideal reading aid because
read 10 to 20 books a day. This programme had also
worked successfully with his second daughter, Keelin,
motivating Dr. Titzer to introduce this approach to all Name: New I.C. No:
parents who wish to give their children a kick start on Address:
literacy. ‘Your Baby Can Read’ series of video and books Email:
are based on Dr. Titzer’s interactive, multi-sensory Telephone: (R) (O) (M)
approach which focuses on the word first (the whole word, Are you a subscriber of Parenthood magazine? ( Yes / No )
not the individual alphabets), then the picture.
Closing date: 31st July 2007
Send your entry to:
Your Baby Can Read Contest, Parenthood Magazine, Today Publishing,
No.10, Jln 3/18D, Tmn Mastiara, Off Jln Ipoh Batu 5½, 51200 K.Lumpur.

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