Teaching Reading (2-5 years of age, depending on your child)
I'm a big advocate for early reading. My mom taught my sister and I to read before entering kindergarten, and it didn't hinder us at all. We might have been a little bored while Johnny was learning to read "See Spot Run," and we were onto The Boxcar Children, but beyond that, we were perfectly normal, if not gifted and talented.
So, once your child has shown interest in reading and books, and you have done some of the "prep work" from Pre Reading, moving on to reading should be a breeze (haha, well, at least not terribly difficult.)
I recommend Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons, by Engelmann, which is a scripted book that will have your child reading at a second grade level in 100 lessons! That is just incredible! 100 lessons/days later, and your child will be able to read and decode phonetically what alot of children can't do in the fourth grade!
You need about 20 minutes per lesson, the entire lesson is scripted so you do not have to prepare before hand, and you do not need any other materials! (wonderful when compared with most other programs that want you to virtually start a homeschool just to teach reading!)
Remember, the small motor skills that are necessary for writing usually develop much later than their necessary skills for learning to read. Please do not hold your child back from learning to read because they can not hold a pencil or cut straight. That will come with time.
On the other hand, once you have started your child on reading, don't forget to work with your child on their small motor skills. Coloring, cutting, lacing beads on a string, placing small objects (beans, rice,) into a cup or bowl with a spoon, will help these skills develop naturally.
Or, if you are like me, check out some great new materials, by Mead, which includes "Color Bound," a coloring book with raised lines so that your child knows when to "stay between the lines." (so cool!) They also have a litany of products for Early Writing skills!
There are other great reading systems out there, but remember to look for one that teaches your child phonics, and not just sight words. You child should be able to recognize a list of Sight words (google Dolche or Frye list,) but this comes secondary to learning how to decode.
Also, remember those leveled readers? Stock up on them! They are awesome for this reading stage because the learning child will feel like they have conquered a mountain, and most of these books introduce new vocabulary throughout. Better than a long story book that feels like you will never complete it!