I'm in search of a reading curriculum for my 5 year old DD. A year ago I tried "just teaching her" using a variety of mostly free resources. It quickly became a power struggle, and we were both miserable. I took a giant step back. DD has now told me that she would like to start working on learning to read. She does not know her letters and their sounds consistently. She ADORES books and spends hours pouring over picture books alone. We go to the library weekly, which she LOVES. I have no doubt that once she starts reading, she will be a reader.
I would like to purchase a step by step reading curriculum with structured lessons, materials, and such. I'd like a secular, not at all computer/electronic based program (she's TV/screen free for now). I want it to be engaging and interactive with some games. I want to look forward to doing it with her, and I want her to look forward to it too. FWIW, we're using Right Start Math, which we really like. We're also using Kumon workbooks to practice fine motor skills which she is enjoying a surprising amount.
What would you recommend?
SAHM to DD1 8/06 , DD2 8/09 , and DD3 9/12 married to 6/99. We , , , , and lots of and .
Some non-screen stuctured programs are:
Explode the code (and since she isn't 100% on letter sounds yet, you can use their other books first. They are Get Ready, Set, and Go for the code) http://rainbowresource.com/searchspring.php?q=go+for+the+code
All About Reading (from the all about spelling people) http://www.allaboutlearningpress.com/all-about-spelling
We also like the "I See Sam" books for reading. They are not workbooks, but do systematically teach all the sounds and representations. At the beginning of each book, there is a list of "new sounds" and of new ways to show the sound. You can look ahead and be teaching those sounds coming up, then use the book for practice. http://www.3rsplus.com/
For yourself, you may want to read "Reading Reflex". It gives great ways to develop phonemic awareness skills (essential for learning to read). At the back of the book, they include a program. It does require some time, etc to implement. I thought it was great for beginning to read skills including blending skills and reading one syllable words with a short vowel sound, but then we needed more.
Good luck on your journey. One thing we did at our house was to buy the alphabet train puzzle from Melissa & Doug. Then, we scattered the pieces and would hunt for the next one, go over the primary sound, and put it in it's place.
We use Sing, Song, Read and Write. I like that it includes music and games. It a big curriculum but we didn't always do everything.
I do what works and when it stops working, then I do something else.
I was just about to post my question regarding starfall as a curriculum because my LO learned to read from zero to full speed reader in no time using starfall and now I am thinking to use it for her Kindy at home as homeschooled kid so I will post to see how people did it with the program.
I totally recommend you to try starfal, it is FREE! :) and it is so much fun and so easy, kids love it and teacher do recommend it in our local schools, now my question is if it is anygood for further and serious learning as lanugage arts..
anyhoo.. do give it a try, my little one knew how to google this site and use it at 3.5, she just loved it so much :)
I would highly recommend The Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading by Jessie Wise. It is a wonderful phonics curriculum that I am using with my kindergartner. She uses lots of rhymes/poems that my DS5 LOVES and makes games out of learning the sounds. The lessons are short and scripted, you can easily summarize if this bothers you.
Wifey to DH , Mama to DS 8, DS 6, DD 1
We use Progressive Phonics and love it. It is free and online, but you can print out the materials and your child doesn't need to be on the computer at all. But you could look at it online and see if you think it's right for her. We love the program because it is interactive. You read some words and the child reads some words. My son loves that we are doing reading together. We did not start this from ground zero though. My son already knew his letters and sounds and some short words, so we started with the intermediate section. So, you can look at it from the beginning and see if it would be a good fit. It's free, so there's no harm in looking!
They learn all the basic sounds w/ manips before they ever start with words on paper--pretty nifty! And worth looking into even as supplementary to other programs
I just went through the process of selecting a reading curriculum for ds (7). After lots of thinking and reviewing what's out there, I ordered Explode the Code books, All About Spelling (which could almost stand alone as a reading curriculum), and McRuffy Phonics Curriculum.
I couldn't seem to narrow the choices down to one, so I'll probably have way more than I need! But they weren't very expensive and it'll allow me to pick and choose what helps ds and what he enjoys the most.
I'd also recommend reading the comments for each curriculum at homeschoolreviews. com. That really helped me figure out which ones would be best for my ds's learning style.