As I’ve been working on teaching my six-year-old to read, we’ve had to try a number of different programs to find one that’s a good fit for him. I think we’ve finally found that program in Alpha-Phonics by Samuel L. Blumenfeld.
Consisting of just one book, this primer is designed for teaching beginners of all ages in both a one-on-one setting as well as in the classroom. The back of the book contains the teacher’s manual, including instructions on teaching the alphabet and letter sounds, as well as instructions for each individual lesson (there are 128 in all). For quick reference, you’ll also find a list outlining the concepts taught or reviewed in each lesson.
When I began using the book with my son, we turned to the last few pages in the book that feature pre-reading alphabet exercises. Because he knew some letter names and other letter sounds, this was a great place for us to start. We review these exercises every day, and he’s made a lot of improvement in just a few short weeks. We then move to a regular lesson, going over it (even for several days) until he knows the letter sounds thoroughly.
To reinforce what he’s learning, we’ve added a writing component to the lessons. After my son has finished reading the lesson to me, I choose five or six letters from the words he’s learned and write them on a piece of paper. I then dictate a word for him to write. He sounds out the word, looks at the letters on the paper, and decides which ones to use and in what order. This easy exercise has worked as good reinforcement of what he’s already learned.
Right now, my son’s Alpha-Phonics lessons consist of reading individual words and two- to three-word sentences. As we continue through the book, though, both the words and the sentences will become more complicated — and he’ll be reading with confidence.
Homeschooling Reading Curriculum by SmartTutor.com
Picture By: woodleywonderworks
Guest Blogger: Samantha Bell