Jump to content

Menu

AAR, LOE and spelling


AngelaR
 Share

Recommended Posts

I have two kids, girl in 1st and boy in K.  Last year, DD "learned" to read in PS Kindergarten. In March, when quarantine began,  I started her on AAR Level 1.  She  has(and I have) done OK with AAR.  There are lots of parts I don't particularly like (fluency sheets, anyone???), and I've adapted it to add a little more practice reading at a lower level with BOB Books, and it's not going too badly.  We are will begin AAR Level 2 in about 2 weeks.  But frankly, she doesn't love reading, even though she does pretty well at it.  Her biggest issue is guessing the words based on the pictures (taught in PS, I presume, ARGGGHH!!)  I know usually AAS starts once you begin AAR level 2.  She is very interested in spelling and writing so I feel it's the proper time to move forward with that.  My dilemma is a bit two-fold, I think.  

Firstly, I personally don't LOVE AAR and I'm worried AAS is going to be much like it...eye-gouging worksheets, and lists we'll have to plough through, etc.  And yes, I know spelling really isn't all that exciting, I remember learning it myself.  

Secondly, after going through AAR 1 with DD, and trying AAR Pre-reading with my son, I really don't think AAR level 1 is for him.  For example, he would much rather shout out answers, march around the room chanting a/A/ah, and act out c-a-t as is called for in LOE than flip paper eggs over or cut paper vegetables with a paper knife to illustrate compound words, like in AAR.  He's just not into doing things with paper, or pencils.  So, I'm going to try LOE with him when we finish AAR Pre after Christmas.  With LOE, you learn to read and spell at the same time.  I'm not sure how that's going to go with him, since he's JUST now learning his alphabet...anyway, we're going to try.  My dilemma is, do I do LOE spelling with DD, while I'm doing it with DS, (which will be SUPER slow for her, since they start with "cat" "dad" and "sad"), do I just wait to do spelling with her till I MAYBE switch her over to LOE levels C/D (as I'm thinking about doing after finishing AAR level 2), or just tough it out with AAS?  Or just find another spelling program altogether.  

Also, would there be any difficulty switching her over to LOE from AAR?  That is, of course, assuming I love it for my son, which is admittedly, unknown yet.  

Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would do LOE with both.

Although I prefer Spalding, which only requires the manual (Writing Road to Reading) and a set of phonogram cards, and you're good to go forever (children 8 and older do a spelling notebook each year). Spalding does everything that LOE does but more simply; and more than AAR/AAS does; and less expensively than both.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

All the Spalding stuff was designed for OLDER students with SPECIAL NEEDS. I do NOT believe in using it as the DEFAULT for YOUNG children, either with or without special needs.

The level of world analysis in Spalding type programs is college level linguistics. Of course it is interesting to moms; it is a firehose to young children.

I prefer the phonics instruction methods used in the 1700s and 1800s. They still work.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Hunter said:

All the Spalding stuff was designed for OLDER students with SPECIAL NEEDS. I do NOT believe in using it as the DEFAULT for YOUNG children, either with or without special needs.

The level of world analysis in Spalding type programs is college level linguistics. Of course it is interesting to moms; it is a firehose to young children.

I prefer the phonics instruction methods used in the 1700s and 1800s. They still work.

 

And yet Spalding works well with all the young children I've taught, because of its flexiblity: you don't have to do that level of analysis for little kidlets.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, AngelaR said:

As a history teacher, I am greatly intrigued. What methods are those?  Is that the McGuffy readers??

The McGuffy readers came out in the 1830's as schools became more secular, and the Bible was being used less as the primary reading book. On the East Coast, villages were nothing like out West, and Europe was even more advanced. Not just urban homes, but also the homes of "gentleman farmers" in villages sometimes had home libraries and were subscribed to magazines.

In colonial times, The bible was the primary reading book alongside a psalter and a speller that usually included a catechism. Children learned British spelling before the Revolution. 

1777 Primer

https://www.amazon.com/New-England-Primer-Original-1777/dp/1947844342/ref=pd_bxgy_3/147-2059107-2942623?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=1947844342&pd_rd_r=a73e001a-6872-44c4-a196-c2efe43b385d&pd_rd_w=81bEs&pd_rd_wg=eNfxJ&pf_rd_p=ce6c479b-ef53-49a6-845b-bbbf35c28dd3&pf_rd_r=9A1DJ26PDCYB8P41M42Z&psc=1&refRID=9A1DJ26PDCYB8P41M42Z

Blueback speller

https://www.amazon.com/American-Spelling-Book-Noah-Webster/dp/1557094691/ref=pd_sbs_14_3/147-2059107-2942623?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=1557094691&pd_rd_r=b2e428d8-6e05-4273-8c94-4167d20085cd&pd_rd_w=6fFq6&pd_rd_wg=8RWgg&pf_rd_p=b65ee94e-1282-43fc-a8b1-8bf931f6dfab&pf_rd_r=F7RXA2THJNQA1NK37Y3A&psc=1&refRID=F7RXA2THJNQA1NK37Y3A

Don Potter has all sorts of information and links on his site

http://35.168.237.198/education_pages/spelling_books.html

Online are tons and tons of scanned old textbooks and teacher training books. My methods are a hodgepodge of so many books, American and British, But I no longer have all the links I used when I was tutoring. I was in school for a couple years and doing other things. But Eclectic Manual of Methods is a must read. https://archive.org/details/eclecticmanualof00cincrich

For modern books based on older methods, the most open and go are Blumenfeld's books.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1495144216/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

https://www.amazon.com/How-Tutor-Samuel-L-Blumenfeld/dp/0941995291/ref=pd_sbs_14_3/147-2059107-2942623?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=0941995291&pd_rd_r=936d0eb3-c0e4-4e53-a5a9-98d001629044&pd_rd_w=7eaOC&pd_rd_wg=gvHar&pf_rd_p=b65ee94e-1282-43fc-a8b1-8bf931f6dfab&pf_rd_r=MDKDTSEJT8E7SJ5BVZYG&psc=1&refRID=MDKDTSEJT8E7SJ5BVZYG

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The Spellers used to be used before readers, to teach reading and spelling, like Hunter says.

My syllables spell success program teaches you how to use the speller,  it teaches syllables along with basic phonics in lessons 1 - 5, then teaches the speller in lessons 6 - 10. 

When young children were taught with the speller, they started with the syllables, then did basic phonics, then 2 syllable words based on the syllables in the speller.

My syllables lessons are designed for older children that have guessing problems from sight words and other balanced literacy practices taught in schools, the word lists and nonsense words help stop the guessing. You could go slow with it and do extra words from Don Potter's Blend Phonics, use all of Blend Phonics instead of the excerpts in the program.

http://thephonicspage.org/On Reading/syllablesspellsu.html

http://www.donpotter.net/education_pages/blend_phonics.html

You could play my nonsense word game with both children (they play, you keep score.) You can set up different cards for each of them based on the sounds they know.

http://thephonicspage.org/On Phonics/concentrationgam.html

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just to chime in on AAS: it doesn’t require worksheets. Each lesson is a new phoneme and/or spelling rule. You tap or clap phonemes or syllables, spell with tiles, then spell with paper. Not exciting, but the tiles/multi-sensory can be good for younger learners. If you kids take to the phonic and rule based method, it could be a simple and efficient method. If they are going to require more reinforcement, yes, it definitely can get tedious, and it doesn’t include any fun bells and whistles.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 10/7/2020 at 1:22 AM, Hunter said:

All the Spalding stuff was designed for OLDER students with SPECIAL NEEDS. I do NOT believe in using it as the DEFAULT for YOUNG children, either with or without special needs.

The level of world analysis in Spalding type programs is college level linguistics. Of course it is interesting to moms; it is a firehose to young children.

I prefer the phonics instruction methods used in the 1700s and 1800s. They still work.

 

I taught in a private school that used Spalding, to great success, but I taught third grade.  It worked fine then, but when I was homeschooling my kids, my kids were NOT ready for Spalding at 4-6, when they were ready to read depending on their ages.  My oldest wasn't remotely ready for Spalding until....third grade, and my younger one wasn't ready then.  

I was so grateful for what I learned teaching Spalding, and I used the phonograms and certain rules teaching them to read, but it was too my writing and too much analysis.  I've wondered for all those years what I did wrong and why I couldn't make it work with my little kids.  This makes me feel better.  

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you want to teach a 4-6 year old how to make bread, you start out letting them see and touch some bread, before you turn on the firehose and start explaining yeast reproduction. To master bread baking you need to learn about yeast reproduction, but it is not where you start.

Humans are adaptable and children are trained to obey and try to please adults. Some young students do learn to read using Spalding, but it just doesn't need to be that traumatic for mom and for the student.

In a selective private school setting, where the students have been red-shirted and cherry-picked and are mostly gifted and exposed to the best of the best of enrichment, third grade students are going to do some amazing things after explicit Spalding instruction. And some children that are specifically dyslexic and have fully entered the logic stage at about 5th grade are going to have almost miraculous results with their READING, but not necessarily with their spelling.

Spalding is a TOOL and when used properly, it is an awesome tool. But a hammer is not a good screwdriver, and a screwdriver is not a good hammer. And neither of those tools is a wrench or sandpaper.

I prefer to start with just 2 letters and then work up to about 5 letters and use those few letters to make as many words and sentences as possible. And then start introducing a letter at a time with tables of words containing that letter and the other mastered letters. I do intensive handwriting instruction at the same time. And with older remedial students, I start introducing grammar, which makes them feel so much more advanced that if we stay with just phonics.

When the parents and the church taught kids to read with nothing but spellers, catechisms, psalters and Bibles, the literacy rates were very high. It worked. Latin America still uses tables of similar words to teach reading. At times you will see videos of word tables written on blackboards in a jungle, during civil wars, when the communists were teaching the peasant fighters to read so they could be ready to lead when they time came. Cuba has outreach reading programs in Latin America and Haiti I think, and I think they use tables of words. Commanders in fatigues and with a loaded rifle nearby don't use Spalding. LOL. 

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, Enigma6 said:

OP, I am so glad you posted as I am trying to make a similar choice. My advice is to switch both to LOE ASAP! I would call LOE after giving your daughter the placement tests for Foundations A and B and go over it with them. (I think they have one for each level?)

HTH you a bit.

That what I think I’m going to do. Calling them is a great idea. The online assessment test recommended I start at A with her bc she hasn’t had any spelling. But she’ll be SO BORED with the reading. But there will be the games, which is why I’m switching. 😄  Are you switching too?  I just hope it doesn’t mess up the progress she’s made so far. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Enigma6 said:

I’m going to be starting with my last one in January. I’m waiting for his fine motor skills to develop a wee bit more. Are you doing Manuscript or Cursive? I’m still debating.

 

Actually, we started with AAR and HWOT this year, transition level I think it was called. My little man’s fine motor is ATROCIOUS, poor thing, so we just do the best we can with HWOT and leave it at that. So, when I switch him to LOE, I think I’ll leave him with HWOT. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We are in a similar boat!  I started LOE with my daughter but the handwriting strokes and handwriting workbook pages really frustrated her, so after lesson 5 we switched to AAR 1.  Thankfully, I held onto the LOE stuff because I think it was actually a better fit for her, but I want to use HWOT for handwriting instead.  I have HWOT on hand, and just this morning was trying to figure out how I wanted to execute it with LOE.  Will you try to pair the HWOT pages with the phonogram you are learning in LOE, or will you just do both books in order without trying to match them up?    Thanks! 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, ASmith said:

We are in a similar boat!  I started LOE with my daughter but the handwriting strokes and handwriting workbook pages really frustrated her, so after lesson 5 we switched to AAR 1.  Thankfully, I held onto the LOE stuff because I think it was actually a better fit for her, but I want to use HWOT for handwriting instead.  I have HWOT on hand, and just this morning was trying to figure out how I wanted to execute it with LOE.  Will you try to pair the HWOT pages with the phonogram you are learning in LOE, or will you just do both books in order without trying to match them up?    Thanks! 

My DD, who’s in 1st grade, will be going from Level 1 back tracking a little to Halfway through LOE Foundations A, to get caught up with spelling.  She’s pretty good at writing, so I was planning on continuing through with HWOT (In HWOT order )till we get done with it (I think we’re about 1/2 way through the transitional Kindergarten book. Then, I’ll probably consider doing doing LOE writing or maybe even doing cursive. I’m not really sure. Did your little finish AAR Level 1?  Then where in LOE Foundations are you going?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We were only a few lessons into AAR 1 so we will start with LOE Foundations A.  I have HWOT My Fist School Book, but I was concerned that it teaches capital letters and LOE A teaches lower case.  I also have Kick Start Kindergarten which has both upper and lower case.  This is my first time teaching phonics/handwriting, so I really appreciate any advice!  Thank you! 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 10/8/2020 at 7:41 PM, Hunter said:

I prefer to start with just 2 letters and then work up to about 5 letters and use those few letters to make as many words and sentences as possible.

Interesting. That's what 100 Easy Lessons does as well, and it worked quite well for both my kids at age 3-3.5. (I have gifted kids.) With DD4, I had to supplement from actual text when reading together, but I'd still only use those letters. 

I really liked that part of their approach. I also really liked how they taught sounding out. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My experiences are just my experiences and were with some extreme cases.

For HANDWRITING I do use Spalding. HWOT was awkward and unnatural for me and the students, and the more so when they were more disabled. For learning disabled lefties, I have only had success with Spalding or the Don Potter free version. http://www.donpotter.net/pdf/shortcut-to-manuscript.pdf

I love Don Potter's SLANTED cursive but ONLY for RIGHTIES. http://35.168.237.198/pdf/af_cursive.pdf Or lefties that are gifted enough to be able to write almost upside down. Vertical cursive is my default for lefties, and I had a lot of them, and Don Potter does not offer that.

I stopped trying to teach all remedial students to write in cursive as my default. The ones that I did teach, I used Spalding lowercase cursive but kept the uppercase letters in manuscript. https://athlosfifth.weebly.com/uploads/8/3/6/5/8365772/beginner_handwriting_packet.pdf In many handwriting styles, manuscript uppercase can be used alongside the cursive lowercase and long as the SLANT and style MATCH. Both Spalding manuscript and cursive are vertical.

Most manuscript is vertical and most cursive is slanted.  If you are going to teach manuscript first and then transition to cursive, it is easier for students if you maintain the same slant.

The handwriting program that you teach should create letters that are built of only a few strokes. The students should be taught the strokes and should compare the strokes in one letter to the same strokes in similar letters. A student should never think each letter as an individual picture to be copied. Good handwriting is composed of consistent strokes that are identical from letter to letter.

If I remember correctly and nothing has changed, LOE does not teach strokes?

Cursive writing requires student to think ahead and multitask; manuscript starts and finishes each letter, before moving onto the next letter. This is critical for some disabled students. If the student is not demonstrating the ability to multitask, I do not introduce cursive.

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 10/6/2020 at 11:22 PM, Hunter said:

All the Spalding stuff was designed for OLDER students with SPECIAL NEEDS. I do NOT believe in using it as the DEFAULT for YOUNG children, either with or without special needs.

The level of world analysis in Spalding type programs is college level linguistics. Of course it is interesting to moms; it is a firehose to young children.

I prefer the phonics instruction methods used in the 1700s and 1800s. They still work.

Not to derail the thread, but what *do* you generally recommend for younger students with special needs? Like, say, a 7yo with the receptive language of a 3yo and average visual-spatial skills but basement-level auditory memory?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The end result of AAR and LOE is much the same. AAR 1 to LOE 1, looks to be a fairly lateral move. Assuming the retention was there, I would most likely just spend time “filling the gaps” before LOE 2. You could easily incorporate spelling practice during, or after, phonological awareness activities. Maybe reading through doodling dragons & the other books at bedtime.
 

As for your younger son, there is no reason you can’t switch to LOE. There also isn’t any reason you can’t continue with AAR PR skipping the tedious bits and adding in your own movement activities similar to loe. Learning to read isn’t enjoyable for every child, no matter the curriculum.
 

My son has had the most success with reading real books and me explaining phonics rules as they come up. I use a couple phonics workbooks for reinforcement. He absolutely loathed AAR. lol 
 

 
 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, Cake and Pi said:

Not to derail the thread, but what *do* you generally recommend for younger students with special needs? Like, say, a 7yo with the receptive language of a 3yo and average visual-spatial skills but basement-level auditory memory?

I recommend Alpha-Phonics revised edition. It should say "workbook" on the cover.

https://www.amazon.com/Alpha-Phonics-Beginning-Readers-Samuel-Blumenfeld/dp/1891375571/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=9781891375576&qid=1602435566&sr=8-1

or 

https://www.amazon.com/Alpha-Phonics-Primer-Reader-Blumenfeld-2011-08-02/dp/B01K3KRFM2/ref=sr_1_6?dchild=1&qid=1602435996&refinements=p_27%3ASamuel+Blumenfeld&s=books&sr=1-6&text=Samuel+Blumenfeld

It should NOT have an italic font. It should NOT be the "original" or even the "latest"! This publisher has put out some very confusing advertising and editions over the years.

http://www.alphaphonics.com/ 

Phonics for Sucess is a smaller version of the revised and what I like best for older students, but for your little guy, I'd use the larger pages.

https://www.amazon.com/Phonics-Success-Samuel-L-Blumenfeld/dp/1495144216/ref=sr_1_13?dchild=1&qid=1602436078&refinements=p_27%3ASamuel+Blumenfeld&s=books&sr=1-13&text=Samuel+Blumenfeld

Non-disabled students can do just fine with even the oldest version included in How to Tutor, and then transitioning to something else or just figuring out enough on their own, but your little guy will benefit from the consistency of starting and finishing the most complete version.

https://www.amazon.com/How-Tutor-Samuel-L-Blumenfeld/dp/0941995291/ref=sr_1_8?dchild=1&qid=1602436078&refinements=p_27%3ASamuel+Blumenfeld&s=books&sr=1-8&text=Samuel+Blumenfeld

 

For the handwriting, I would use Spalding manuscript and plan on staying with Spalding manuscript. I have been in college and have not keeping up with tutoring and all the newest editions and resources for books. I see links to all sorts of teacher created resources that can be downloaded for Spalding handwriting and I have no person experience with any of them. The original author of Spalding was a good woman; the company that inherited here work is big business and you need to beware of them. Okay, I see the 6th edition still for sale and this has excellent handwriting instruction if someone were teaching cursive, but I think all you need is the Don Potter manuscript.

https://www.amazon.com/Writing-Road-Reading-6th-Rev/dp/0062083937/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=spalding+spelling&qid=1602436860&sr=8-1

Don Potter Manuscript

http://www.donpotter.net/pdf/shortcut-to-manuscript.pdf

Do NOT leave the child unattended to go an entire page of handwriting. Monitor each letter as it is written. Even if you do not correct the child immediately, figure out which STROKE is off and make the child write that stroke and then the full letter, even if later in the day or the next day. Do not have the child continue to practice incorrect letter formation.

There are students that I have taught all caps handwriting, if they were severely disabled in their motor skills. There are many cons to this, but there are students that function in society best by just writing in all caps all the time.

Go slow. Do a lot of handwriting instruction, rather than just reading. Move ahead and then go back several lessons and review. You may need to take breaks and start over from the beginning. Several times. This is HARD for some students! The number of letters and combinations is just a mountain to learn.

Also do not believe everything you are told after testing. Testing is big business, and acting like the results you receive are important makes a lot of people a lot of money and lets them all live in their comfy world that requires creating categories with scales and forcing people into them and measuring them according to the scale of the category. Your child is wider and far more complex than their stupid categories. He may even be gifted in some ways. Maybe far more gifted than they and their tests can recognize or measure. Be alert for areas of strengths, and teach to them.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 7 months later...
On 10/11/2020 at 12:43 PM, Hunter said:

I recommend Alpha-Phonics revised edition. It should say "workbook" on the cover.

https://www.amazon.com/Alpha-Phonics-Beginning-Readers-Samuel-Blumenfeld/dp/1891375571/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=9781891375576&qid=1602435566&sr=8-1

or 

https://www.amazon.com/Alpha-Phonics-Primer-Reader-Blumenfeld-2011-08-02/dp/B01K3KRFM2/ref=sr_1_6?dchild=1&qid=1602435996&refinements=p_27%3ASamuel+Blumenfeld&s=books&sr=1-6&text=Samuel+Blumenfeld

It should NOT have an italic font. It should NOT be the "original" or even the "latest"! This publisher has put out some very confusing advertising and editions over the years.

http://www.alphaphonics.com/ 

Phonics for Sucess is a smaller version of the revised and what I like best for older students, but for your little guy, I'd use the larger pages.

https://www.amazon.com/Phonics-Success-Samuel-L-Blumenfeld/dp/1495144216/ref=sr_1_13?dchild=1&qid=1602436078&refinements=p_27%3ASamuel+Blumenfeld&s=books&sr=1-13&text=Samuel+Blumenfeld

Non-disabled students can do just fine with even the oldest version included in How to Tutor, and then transitioning to something else or just figuring out enough on their own, but your little guy will benefit from the consistency of starting and finishing the most complete version.

https://www.amazon.com/How-Tutor-Samuel-L-Blumenfeld/dp/0941995291/ref=sr_1_8?dchild=1&qid=1602436078&refinements=p_27%3ASamuel+Blumenfeld&s=books&sr=1-8&text=Samuel+Blumenfeld

 

For the handwriting, I would use Spalding manuscript and plan on staying with Spalding manuscript. I have been in college and have not keeping up with tutoring and all the newest editions and resources for books. I see links to all sorts of teacher created resources that can be downloaded for Spalding handwriting and I have no person experience with any of them. The original author of Spalding was a good woman; the company that inherited here work is big business and you need to beware of them. Okay, I see the 6th edition still for sale and this has excellent handwriting instruction if someone were teaching cursive, but I think all you need is the Don Potter manuscript.

https://www.amazon.com/Writing-Road-Reading-6th-Rev/dp/0062083937/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=spalding+spelling&qid=1602436860&sr=8-1

Don Potter Manuscript

http://www.donpotter.net/pdf/shortcut-to-manuscript.pdf

Do NOT leave the child unattended to go an entire page of handwriting. Monitor each letter as it is written. Even if you do not correct the child immediately, figure out which STROKE is off and make the child write that stroke and then the full letter, even if later in the day or the next day. Do not have the child continue to practice incorrect letter formation.

There are students that I have taught all caps handwriting, if they were severely disabled in their motor skills. There are many cons to this, but there are students that function in society best by just writing in all caps all the time.

Go slow. Do a lot of handwriting instruction, rather than just reading. Move ahead and then go back several lessons and review. You may need to take breaks and start over from the beginning. Several times. This is HARD for some students! The number of letters and combinations is just a mountain to learn.

Also do not believe everything you are told after testing. Testing is big business, and acting like the results you receive are important makes a lot of people a lot of money and lets them all live in their comfy world that requires creating categories with scales and forcing people into them and measuring them according to the scale of the category. Your child is wider and far more complex than their stupid categories. He may even be gifted in some ways. Maybe far more gifted than they and their tests can recognize or measure. Be alert for areas of strengths, and teach to them.

Just came across this older thread. Question for Hunter - I taught both of my kids to read with an Alpha-Phonics book that I found for $5 and a set of foam letters from the Dollar Tree. Simple, easy, and it worked. Both kids were reading well in Kindergarten, and we finished the book in 1st grade along with some Explode the Code workbooks for more practice. I'm now looking for input on where to go from there in language arts. For my oldest, we tried going to Abeka in 2nd grade because it's always held as the phonics gold standard in my homeschool community. I was taught Abeka in private school, so it's familiar to me. But to be honest, the teacher's manual made me want to hurl myself off a building. It just wasn't a good fit for me, and we struggled with getting through all the different pieces...the lessons, the charts, the workbooks, and the fact that spelling and reading and phonics and grammar were all separated. It was cumbersome and time consuming, and we started to skip things just to get through it. And even though I acknowledge that it's a great program, it's only great if I can teach it. So I'm on the hunt for something new for my (now) 2nd grader who just finished Alpha-Phonics.

My question for Hunter is - as someone familiar with Alpha-Phonics, do you have any recommendations on where to go after that? I really feel like a strong phonics foundation is important. Was Alpha-Phonics enough? Something that goes over the phonogram rules and the "why" behind phonics does sound appealing to me, but I don't want to bog them down since they're both reading well for their ages. I'm also realizing that spelling and spelling rules are probably going to need a bit more attention with both my kids. Ideally, I'd love a program that covers phonics, spelling and grammar all in one without being overwhelming. Does such a magic unicorn program exist? I've been considering LOE Foundations for my youngest, but it's expensive and the teacher's manual looks a little busy. I've wondered if I could still teach him the phonograms by just using the flashcards and the games and skip all of the other pricey stuff? I've also looked into AAR/AAS, but I've heard that they move slowly, and I'm not crazy about it being 2 separate programs. I also just stumbled on Reading Lessons Through Literature (now Reading and Spelling Through Literature), which looks interesting and a bit more straightforward. I like simple, but I also want to make sure I'm giving them a good foundation. Open to ideas! Thanks for reading my ramblings :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Look into traditional spelling from Memoria Press. They also include some phonics teaching in 1st and 2nd grade literature in tje context of real books. I am thinking of using it for my comming up little guy. I used AAR with my older 2 and I am a bit tired of it;)

 

Traditional Spelling Level 2 parts

Traditional Spelling Level 1 parts

2nd reading

 

They also sell bundled sets for spelling and literature. They also have great costumer service. I don't personally use many of their products as i tend more Charlotte Mason, but I really appreciate their costumer service and return policy;) I am using them for Greek next year and am excited.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

I had to return our AAR level 1 when I tried with my 4 year old. I see lots of people raving about AAR for their littles and we just couldn't. No matter how I divided up the lesson, split the fluency sheets into segments, use silly games with the fluency sheets (even more active and silly than suggested in the book) we couldn't do it. I saw my son's enjoyment and desire to learn to read plummet.

My eldest learn to hear the sounds in words using "sound games", for him that involved mostly me just telling him the initial sounds to words and pretending to sound out words as I went. For my youngest she actually likes flipping through mini booklets of sounds, and playing some actual games where we pick out things with the same sound or with different sounds. We tried AAR when my eldest can sound out phonetic words with only regular consonant sounds and short vowel sounds.

For my son I think fluency is tied too tightly with the reading lessons in AAR. So right now with my eldest we work on fluency separate from learning the phonics. He works on reading sentences, words, phrases either with action, objects or pictures. I teach him the phonics using TOPGTR, where we practice reading the words with the specific phonics lesson learned with a simple word match, word categorizing, and pointing out words during some of our together reading. 

I'm not sure what we'll really do when we are ready to do spelling.

Edited by Clarita
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

I agree with Clarita about seperating fluency and phonics. Even WITH AAR for my older ones, I added in old Alice and Jerry or Dick and Jane for fluency and enjoyment only. We did not add these in till phonetic reading was firmly established like AAR level 2 maybe? I also used American Language readers and Abeka little books along with level 1. Those fluency sheets are really hard.

This time around I am going more on my own...I am Orton Gillingham trained...;) no idea why I didnt trust myself to begin with. I am using a varity of blend and word cards, phonetic readers, magnetic phonetic letters and digraphs, sandpaper letters, Montessori sentences and pictures, and Word Mastery from little seedlings for easy times. We will start Alice and Jerry when he is reading more phonetic combinations and sentences......

There are 2 more below this one so I will have another chance...;) So far I have 1 probably dislexic who reads well and struggles with spelling and handwriting, and one for whome all things language comes easily...I think the current one is in the middle;)

 

ETA I think Don Potter recommends WISE owl polysyllables as a follow up to Alpha Phonics. 

http://www.donpotter.net/reading_clinic.html

Edited by countrymum
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

I used LOE Foundations & my very active / kinesthetic kiddo had an absolute blast with it! I loved how hands-on it was. I did not love their approach to spelling, though; the word lists felt very disjointed. 

We ended up abandoning that portion & using AAS once he had completed LOE Foundations. He blasted through Level 1-3 the first year & is now working steadily through one level per year. It’s quick, easy, & gets the job done with clear improvement in his spelling beyond the lessons themselves (in independent writing, etc).

ETA: Sorry, didn’t realize this was an older thread. I’ll leave our experience in case the new poster (or anyone else) finds it helpful. 

Edited by Shoes+Ships+SealingWax
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I recommend Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading. The people who sponsor these boards, the ones we are discussing this topic on, are the publishers and authors of that book. That book is very easy to follow very clear and very comprehensive.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...