Finger pointing

Here is a video of a lovely girl reading a familiar book, i.e. a book that she has read before.

She is reading so well that l want to take that pointing finger away!

Pointing has it’s place. I have written a previous post about Pointing to words or not? As previously stated, we do not encourage our students to continue to point once they are doing the one-one matching of voice and print because pointing generally slows down the reading and potentially gets in the way of maintaining meaning.

Pointing to each individual word can prevent the eyes from scanning ahead to see what is coming next. Scanning ahead adds to the meaning and context of the word currently being read / solved. It is obvious that this is not a problem for the girl in the video. She seems to know this book very well.

If your child is reluctant to stop pointing, and he / she no longer seems to need to doreading this, a compromise can be to run a finger along underneath the words. But it is best to remove the finger as soon as possible. I have my students firmly hold the book with both hands to keep the fingers occupied if pointing has just become an unnecessary habit.

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