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Plaid Phonics workbooks vs. ETC

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My dd is 4 this month. We've been working through Phonics Pathways but recently have taken a break. Learning her letter sounds and blending came very easily to her. She has very good phonemic awareness (can hear first sound, last sound, middle sound, rhyming words). She can read most short-vowel words, but is still in the painful sounding out phase, even though we've practiced quite a bit with BOB books and Nora Gaydos readers. I thought some workbooks might help reinforce what she's learned and introduce her to some new content without as much mom involvement (she does like doing workbooks... I think she feels like she's accomplished something). But, she definitely is not forming all of her lowercase letters correctly yet, though she likes to try and "draw" them (we're working through HWT preschool).


Could someone explain the differences between the ETC and Plaid Phonics wb's? From the small samples I've seen online, I'm more drawn to the Plaid Phonics ones for some reason. Which do you think requires more writing? Which moves faster through the material (it seems like ETC moves at a snail's pace, but how does Plaid Phonics compare)? Does one seem to be more busy-work-ish than the other?

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At the conference last weekend one of the major points Jessie Wise made was to absolutely NOT tie writing ability and reading ability together. They require two very different skill sets. Developmental readiness for one often far exceeds the developmental readiness for the other. Children can often read far above their ability to write, so instruction in writing should occur at a seperate time from reading instruction.


I don't have enough curriculum experience to answer that part of your post.

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I'm not very good at comparisons and reviews...


Plaid Phonics has a wider variety of activities. ETC is pretty much the same thing every week.


In ETC sometimes it's hard to figure out what the pictures are.


As far as writing goes, definitely don't connect that to reading (as pp said). You could do either one orally or use letter tiles instead of writing.


They're both very good, but I prefer Plaid Phonics.

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Thanks for the feedback. Yep, I agree... that's why I'm wondering about the writing required in each. It seems to me (again from very limited samples) that ETC requires more writing and that the PP activities could more easily be modified to not require writing. Can anyone tell me if that is the case?

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I've used ETC (I think between my older 3 I used all the levels at some point), and now I'm using PP K with ds3 (only when he wants to satisfy his need to be like his brothers) and PP A with ds5.


ETC requires the child to read sentences from the beginning lessons. Just flipping through PP A it looks like the child reads words in isolation throughout the entire book. ETC is black & white, PP is full color.


There is more writing in ETC than PP, but when I used it with beginning writers I found it easy to modify--I would write their answer in a highlighter and have them trace, or I'd have them draw lines from the word to the answer blank kind of thing. After they can write themselves, ETC can be done independently and I like that it is really easy to see if they actually read what they were supposed to read or if they just guessed.


For some reason I think ETC moves faster than PP, but that could just be my impression. ETC helped my sons learn to read, where PP is simply reinforcing what my ds is learning in his Phonics lessons.


HTH :001_smile:

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