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momaof3
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I have rising 4th and 2nd graders and am looking for a good LA program. I used FLL3 but am wondering if there is one that will teach writing also. Please help this is our 2nd year but I am just getting very nervous on if I am doing enough:confused:. I also want to know what reading programs you have used that you like. My 7yo isn't a confident reader and needs work on reading fluently while the 9yo is an excellent reader and loves to do it. Do you use a reading program for your 4th grader? All help is greatly appreciated.

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The writing complement to FLL is Writing With Ease. It's pretty straightforward and the workbook plans everything out. I think the Peace Hill Press website has placement tests for it. I think a lot of people piece things together rather than try to do one program to cover everything, since it's easier to find a fit for their child who may not be on the same level in everything. If you really want to use an all-in-one, you could look at The Phonics Road, Primary Arts of Language, or The Logic of English.

 

We don't use a formal reading program, I select books at approximately the reading level DD is comfortable with (some are easier, some are harder - I try to alternate) and have her read aloud to me each day to check fluency.

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WWE is a great complement to FLL. Just do the evaluations to place the children. Do NOT just put them at grade level (you can do that with FLL, but not WWE).

 

SWB actually recommends separate grammar and writing programs, as most grammar/writing programs that are combined are somewhat weak on the writing. But if you use the writing across the curriculum, you'll be ok (ie, if you did R&S English, which has grammar and writing, you'd want to take your writing lessons and use them in history/science/literature as well).

 

WWE/WWS are very strong programs though, and they go well with FLL. Unfortunately, you'll need to find another grammar program after FLL4, regardless. I switched over to KISS Grammar after (actually partway through) FLL3. I've used WWE1/2 and now IEW for writing. I prefer grammar/writing to be somewhat separate, because my son is in different places in those subjects.

 

I don't think you need to freak out though. Some people don't do a formal writing program until 4th or 5th grade or so. Have you been doing any copywork, dictation, and oral narration in the last year?

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Thank you for your help and suggestions. My 7 yr old has had phonics but need to keep doing it since he is the reluctant reader and forgets rules. I have the Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading. Have any of you used it? I liked FLL3 so I guess I should add WWE. I didn't know about the placement website so that will help. I was planning on just letting the older one read books on his level that I could find a guide on so it helps to see that most of you don't do a formal reading program since we didn't do one last year also. We did read quite a few books though since he loves to read. The 7 yr old on the other hand is hard because I can't seem to find his niche in what he likes to read. The only things he loves now are legos and baseball and some of the lego book seem to have words that hre hard for him. Since he gets frustrated easily I want to have things he can read easily to build up his condifence.

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OPGTR would replace Phonics Pathways; it's a solid phonics book, too. :) I'd keep him there as long as he needs it, then replace it with a phonics based spelling program.

 

The placement test for WWE is here, under the description.

 

To gauge a book's reading level check out http://www.lexile.com. Put a couple book titles or ISBNs in that you know he can read well to get an idea of his Lexile level. Then you can run other books through to get an idea of how hard they'll be for him. I think you're right to try getting books that are on the easier side for this particular stage; that will help build fluency. Once my kids got over that initial hurdle they took off and didn't mind books that were more challenging.

 

Does he like quirky humor? Some of Roald Dahl's smaller books may fit the bill. The Twits is a great one for reluctant kids, also Magic Finger, Esio Trot, and such. They're very silly stories, but not babyish.

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