Thursday, June 7, 2012

Reading Program Decision

For the record, after looking at Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons, The Ordinary Parents' Guide to Teaching Reading and Phonics Pathways via a couple of different library systems, I've decided to give Phonics Pathways a try as our first reading program, where and when such a program becomes appropriate.

EZ100 made my small brain hurt, largely because it uses orthographic notation on the theory that the kids will need to know it someday, so why not start when they're six. {?!!} Maybe I'm just scared of something I don't understand myself, but I thought that approach was thoroughly off-putting and scary.

OPGTR is better, but what I discovered is that it's called "ordinary parent's guide" because it assumes no knowledge or skill whatsoever on the part of the parent, and therefore scripts nearly every line and action in the teaching process! "Instructor: Now you are going to read this word on your own. I will use my finger as a guide to help you." I'm sure this is all very wise and wonderful, but I am stubborn rebellious snot, and I am simply unable to operate under this level of control. If Phonics Pathways fails miserably, I'll try OPGTR next, but I can't stand the thought of being so mechanical in my approach. That said, I will be keeping OPGTR out of the library for a while so I can take some notes. For example, in the lesson on the "ph" sound, the authors write, "There is a delightful poem that contains all sorts of ph words called "Eletelephony" by Laura Richards. You can find this poem on several Internet sites or in the book Favorite Poems Old and New by Helen Ferris, 1957." I love ideas like this, and the general information chapters at the front and back are interesting as well.

Anyway, Phonics Pathways seemed to strike a nice blend between well-structured, complete lessons and superperky enthusiasm for children and language, and since it didn't push any of my psychological buttons, LOL, it's on order from Amazon now.

Wish us luck!


  1. Can't wait to hear what you think!

  2. With my oldest, I used Romalda Spalding's The Writing Road to Reading because it was the one I liked the best after looking over my library's selection of phonics programs. WRTR is not the most teacher-friendly book, but I found it very effective.

    With my 2nd, I used the Hooked on Phonics K-2 kit, which I got on clearance for around $30. I liked HOP a lot better than WRTR. After DS finished HOP, he started All About Spelling.

    My 3rd child has autism, so I may need to use more intensive programs like Lindamood-Bell's LiPS followed by Barton or Wilson. But I'm hoping that won't be necessary.

  3. Thanks so much for weighing in ladies. Crimson Wife, I'm going to send you a random email about L-B.