All About Reading Level 2 Review

All About Reading Level 2 Review

*This post contains affiliate links. Please read disclosure policy.*

I did not receive this product in exchange for my review.

After seeing success in my daughter’s beginning stages of reading using Teach Your Child to Read 100 Easy Lessons, I wondered what curriculum to do next and hoped that I would see the same success rate. After some research and prayer, we went with All About Reading Level 2, and it ended up being a great fit!

The transition from Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons to All About Reading Level 2 was doable and not as harsh as I thought it would be.

I honestly had no clue how to help my children to read, so I needed all the help I could get. And the curriculum that would make it easiest for me AND help my daughter to read would be just right. Ultimately, the choice to transition to All About Reading was the best fit for my children, my style of teaching and to see reading success!

A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading

What We/I LIKED About All About Reading Level 2

  • Brief Review – Reviewing is important to me so that my daughter doesn’t forget what she’s learned, so we could appreciate the brief review time before learning the new concept.
  • Scripted Format – I appreciate a scripted format! I don’t have a hot clue how to teach reading to my children.
  • Multisensory approach:
    • Magnet Tiles – The magnet tiles are so amazing. I love that it changes things up so we’re not stuck at a desk.
    • Activities – These take no time at all to prep and they are such a great way to reinforce what was learned. Although some of the activities seemed a bit quirky to my daughter, she still thought they were nice to have and we’d always finish them because of the benefit of reinforcement.
  • Phoenic Rules – Seriously, who knew that there were so many phonics rules when it came to reading. My daughter had all the questions when it came to the a making a short sound or long sound and I had NO idea how to answer that. (I can’t remember if I learned it in public school). This curriculum answers ALL those questions and more! I was so glad I had a resource to help explain the rules. Who knew syllables made all the difference?!
  • Progress Chart, Stickers & Certificate of Achievement – My daughter LOVED the sense of accomplishment with each lesson when she got to put on the sticker. And then to cap it all off with the certificate was a proud moment for both of us! Seriously mom, try not to cry remembering all that you went through together with your child to help them to read!
  • Readers – My daughter (and I) really enjoyed the quality of the stories in the books. She laughed, couldn’t wait to find out what happened and enjoyed the pictures (even though they were black & white).
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading

What We/I DIDN’T REALLY LIKE About All About Reading Level 2

  • Price – I wasn’t prepared for the price of the curriculum. But in seeing what it all offered in the journey of learning to read, the investment made it more worth it.

What We/I CHANGED About All About Reading Level 2

  • Warm-Up & Practice Sheets – Since my daughter is working at enjoying reading, her body language would change when I’d give her these sheets. All About Reading has ideas to help through these sheets (see Appendix I in the Teacher’s Manual). I also wasn’t interested in cutting up the practice sheets and feeding the monster. So here’s what I did instead… I did not make my daughter read every warm-up or practice sheet, nor did she need to read all of it. The reason for this is because she would feel defeated really quickly. What I did instead was chose a warm-up sheet, give her a ruler so that she wouldn’t feel overwhelmed by all the reading that she needed to do and instead showed her where she needed to go until or suggested that we would go line-by-line and see how far she could get. I only had my daughter read a warm-up sheet once every 5 lessons or so. Repetition is key for reading, so how did I help grow my daughter’s ability and fluency to read? I used All About Reading Level 2 word flashcards and created a challenge. (Find out below what I did)
  • Reading the Books – Again, because reading is a challenge for my daughter, I chose to use the books as read-alouds pointing to some of the words that she could read or learned in the lesson.

So What’s All About Reading All About?

All About Reading is a scripted, open-and-go program for parents who want to teach reading in the most effective way possible.

It’s a multisensory approach learning reading through sight, sound and touch.

There are no gaps in this program. Each new concept builds upon the previous one so no steps are skipped and everything is taught.

There are five key components to reading and this program teaches all of them thoroughly:

  • Phonological Awareness
  • Phonics and Decoding
  • Fluency
  • Vocabulary
  • Comprehension

The All About Reading program has a focused mission, which is to enable you to teach your child to read while guaranteeing retention and enjoyment. This is also why their lifetime support is amazing!

A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading

What Your Child Will Learn in All About Reading Level 2

  • Three-letter blends
  • The jobs of Silent E
  • New phonograms
  • Methods for decoding multi-syllable words

Every component of reading is taught in Level 2, including:

  • Using phonics (decoding), they will learn phonograms WH, EE, ER, AR, OR, ED, OY, OI, AW, AU, OW, and OU
  • Reading words containing the new phonograms, such as whale, sheep, herd, farm, horn, toy, boil, saw, haul, flower, and found
  • Reading words with long I or O before two consonants, as in find and gold
  • Reading words with soft C, as in race
  • Reading words with soft G, as in gem
  • Learning the first four jobs of Silent E
  • Decoding (Structural Analysis)
  • Identifying base words
  • Reading contractions, such as they’ll
  • Learning syllable division rules for reading multisyllable words
  • Reading words with past tense ending ed, including all three sounds, as in wanted, snowed, and chipped
  • Vocabulary
  • Discussing new words in the context of the story and one’s own life
  • Understanding homophones
  • Understanding synonyms and antonyms
  • Fluencying
  • Reading with accuracy
  • Reading with meaningful expression
  • Reading with natural phrasing
  • Comprehension
  • Connecting text to one’s own experiences
  • Making predictions
  • Comparing and contrasting main characters
  • Skiming for specific information
  • Making inferences from the text
  • Discussing character motivation, main conflict
  • Identifying the main character

What I Did BEFORE We Purchased All About Reading Level 2

Because we started with Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons, I searched out what curriculum was recommended as the easiest transition to move to and everywhere I researched recommended All About Reading Level 2.

So BEFORE I purchased All About Reading Level 2, I took this placement test (scroll down a little further in that blog post to find it).

One thing you don’t want to do is purchase the wrong level being that this program is not grade-based.

A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading

HOW TO Transition From Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons To All About Reading Level 2

I found that if you’ve had success with Teach Your Child To Read In 100 Easy Lessons, that you can safely and fairly easily transition into All About Reading Level 2.

I will caution you though… there are new concepts in All About Reading Level 2 that Teach Your Child To Reading in 100 Easy Lessons doesn’t touch on. 

For example, the first lesson in Level 2 had review about closed and open syllables. I thought to myself, “oh no!” we don’t know this. 

BUT here’s the thing, START in Lesson 1 at the New Teaching section and then go back to the Review section of Lesson 1 and you’ll all be fine!

A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading

All About Reading Level 2 Materials I Purchased

If it’s your FIRST time considering the purchase of All About Reading and you’re starting at Level 2, this is what I purchased:

  • All About Reading Level 2 Materials – this includes the Teacher’s Manual, one Student Packet (which contains the activity book, flashcards, and stickers), and two readers.
  • Reading Interactive Kit – This is a one-time purchase, and this same kit is used in all four levels of All About Reading. It comes in two versions:
    • Basic – One-time purchase, used in all four levels. Includes Letter Tiles, Magnets, Phonogram Sounds App, and Divider Cards. (I purchased this Basic Reading Interactive Kit)
    • Deluxe – Includes everything in the Basic Kit, plus Reading Review Box and Reading Tote Bag.
  • Letter Tiles App or Magnetic White Board – I purchased a whiteboard like this one. It was important to me that my children could touch and feel the letters and see them move on a physical board. The letter tiles app comes with the purchase of your curriculum, so for fun or a change-up, I would have my daughter use the app.

What To Do When You FIRST Get Your All About Reading Materials

If you’ve never purchased All About Reading before, preparation and organization is the FIRST thing to do. The prep work is simple, but takes time, so in the long run you’re creating ease for yourself if you do it now!

STEP 1: Listen to a favorite podcast or watch a movie you enjoy to help pass the time of prep!

STEP 2: Grab your All About Reading Level 2 Materials and begin the prep.

  • In the Student Packet is the:
    • Activity Book – Tear out all the pages. Then begin cutting out where applicable. (I asked for my daughter’s help so that she could be involved in the process). You could use one page protector for each lesson if you find that a better way to organize, however, I felt that storing 5 lessons in one page protector was also doable (and resourceful)
    • Flashcards – Tear apart the phonogram and word cards and put them in an index box. This takes time, but is a simple to do. If you purchase the Reading Interactive Kit, you can add the Divider Cards here, too.
    • Syllable Tags – Use the magnets in the Reading Interactive Kit placing them on the back of each tag.
    • Stickers – To show lesson completion on the progress chart.
    • Two Readers – What Am I? and Queen Bee.
  • Basic Reading Interactive Kit:
    • Letter Tiles and Magnets – Tear apart the letter tiles and add one magnet to the center of each tile. Any extra pieces I put in a resealable bag storing in a plastic page protector.
  • Other Materials That Are Recommended or Needed

We didn’t put the magnetic white board up on the wall (because we didn’t have space). Instead I had it on the floor leaned up against a suitable area and when it was time to use it, I was sitting together with my daughter on the floor (carpet thankfully), helping her to learn the material.

STEP 3: Read the Teacher’s Manual, including Part 1 – Preparing for Level 2 and Part 3 – Appendices to gain confidence in teaching the material and how to use it.

A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading

What I WISHED I Did

Proper Magnet Tiles Set-up – at first, I wondered if it was really necessary to set-up the magnet tiles as suggested. I didn’t have the letters in order on the magnetic white board. (I’m usually trying to take short-cuts where I can). But, I quickly found out that it was easier to set-up the magnet tiles properly and use them. So I changed it to what was recommended and I’m so glad I did.
Student Activity Book Storage System – with keeping student activity book pages, I kept them all in one page protector – imagine, it all fit! This wasn’t as organized as it could be and I have one more child that needs to use this curriculum, so organizing it into a more useable format was necessary. I used this binder and these page protectors.
Read all the appendix pages – somehow I missed this portion in my initial preparation. I read the preparation pages at the beginning of the book, but in missing the appendices, I missed out on the practical suggestions and applications!

My Child’s Learning Style

I think it’s helpful in the curriculum you decide to purchase whether it’s a good fit based on your child’s personality and learning style. So here’s a little bit about my daughter: 

  • She likes rules and boundaries and will follow them (why can’t all things be black and white!)
  • Struggles with perfectionism and over-achievement. If she doesn’t get a concept immediately, she’s hard on herself.
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading

If You’re Child Is Struggling In Learning How To Read

When working with a child who doesn’t enjoy reading and finds it challenging, repetition and celebrating wins is key.

I involved A LOT of repetition to support the working memory. (All About Reading’s blog post on working memory was a light-bulb moment for me. They also have other AMAZING articles to help you in journey to support your child’s reading journey).

So I created a game (or challenge) for my daughter to find out her ability and fluency in reading. This also helped break things up.

The Reading Repetition Game & Challenge

I took 20 of the All About Reading Level 2 word cards (starting with the easiest) and put this stack in front of my daughter. I let her know that we were going to practice reading this words regularly and that I would time her to see how long it took her.

It’s important to let your child know know that the goal of timing is for them (and you) to see that their ability to read is going faster with time, practice and repetition.

My daughter agreed to this and thought it would be fun as well!

As my daughter started reading the word cards, I would start my timer and record the time it took her to read the 20 word cards. I gave her these same cards to read 2-3 times a week for a month. When a month was up we would review how much faster she got at reading those words and celebrate!

This was encouraging for both my daughter and I. We saw that, yes, she is indeed getting more comfortable and fluent at reading!

We then moved onto another 20 words and did the same thing.

A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading
A detailed and in-depth review of All About Reading Level 2 - including what we liked and didn't like, what we changed and how success in reading was achieved! #allaboutreading #learningtoread #homeschoolreading

How Long Did It Take To Complete All About Reading Level 2?

It took us one year to complete All About Reading Level 2 as we also alternated between All About Spelling Level 1 and added All About Spelling Level 2 when Level 1 was finished. I found that spelling was also helpful in the reading portion.

Have you used the All About Reading program before or are you jumping into Level 2 like we did?

If you found this detailed review helpful, please leave a comment below; I’d love to hear from you!

Anchored in Christ,
Melanie

PS: I’ve been really enjoying Mom Life Happy Life for all kinds of tips and tricks. Check it out here!

REVIEW: Learning About Biblical Feasts Study Guide

REVIEW: Learning About Biblical Feasts Study Guide

*This post contains affiliate links. Please read disclosure policy.*

We’ve been looking to study Biblical feasts as part of both history and Bible in our homeschool and family. Learning About Biblical Feasts: A Study Guide to the Feasts of the Bible for Children & Families is the perfect resource and easy to implement.

I received this free product in exchange for my honest review. I only recommend products to you that we use and enjoy!

Why Learning About Biblical Feasts Is Important

We only know a small amount about God. Being that we live in the new covenant now, Holy Spirit gives us revelation, insight and understanding about the nature and character of God. Holy Spirit also reveals the heart of God as we seek Him.

A natural way to gain spiritual understanding is through symbolism. There are lots of symbolic events in the Bible. So to gain more understanding of God, we need to dig deeper.

Although I was raised in a Christian home and became a Christian at an early age, I never really dug into the Jewish feasts. Yet, I’ve always had an interest to learn.

Side note… this is one of the benefits of homeschooling – you learn what you teach your kids!

Studying and learning about the Biblical feasts helps you to know God more and celebrate what He's done. As a family, dig into this open-and-go study guide! #Christian #BiblicalFeasts #Bible

Learning About Biblical Feasts Study Guide

Included in the Study Guide:

  • Table of Contents
  • Biblical Feasts Calendar
  • Introduction – Importance of Learning About Jewish Feasts As Christians
  • The Jewish feasts in one year include: 
    • Purim (Feast of Lots)
    • Passover (Pesah or Pesach)
    • Shavuot or Pentecost (Feast of Weeks)
    • Rosh Hashanah (Feast of the Trumpet)
    • Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement)
    • Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles)
    • Hanukkah (Feast of Dedication or Feast of Lights)
  • What Does It All Mean?
  • A Prayer
  • Answers
Studying and learning about the Biblical feasts helps you to know God more and celebrate what He's done. As a family, dig into this open-and-go study guide! #Christian #BiblicalFeasts #Bible

How The Study Guide Works (And What We Did)

This study guide is for great for children and families; it’s truly and open-and-go.

  • The Biblical Feasts Calendar is a great tool to keep handy to remember the feasts throughout the year. (We have the calendar stored on the inside of our kitchen cabinet as our reminder!)
  • The Introduction is a great way to prepare your heart for why you and your family should take in the history of the Biblical feasts and how you can apply them today. 
  • Each feast is divided up into sections:
    • The History of the Biblical feast – This includes the happenings in the Bible leading up to the feast and the feast itself. It’s really a great summary making it easy to listen to and understand for children. We also incorporated a kids movie (Veggie Tales like this one is good for the littles) so they could watch the story leading up to the feast. You’ll find out fairly quickly that most movies don’t talk about the feasts themselves, which is too bad. This is where you want to make sure you’re picking up the study guide to reinforce the feast and why it was held.
    • How You Can Celebrate Today – I like how it takes the history and applies it to today as we live in the new covenant. This is what my children (and I) were particularly excited about. It also invites you to read the story out of the Bible as a family, which we love!
    • Questions – These are great for recall of history. My kiddos verbally answered, while I wrote their answers on the sheet provided.
    • Notebooking Pages – My children are smaller and are at the stage of drawing and beginning to write, so we just found an appropriate coloring sheet for the feast (such as Purim) and wrote the type of feast on it.
  • What Does It All Mean? – This ties the Old and New Testament together, which is really well done.
  • A Prayer – The prayer of salvation is so important, especially as we discover God’s goodness and His love for us, so this was a pleasant find.
  • Answers – Having answers is great for a quick reference, or if your older children are correcting their work by themselves.
Studying and learning about the Biblical feasts helps you to know God more and celebrate what He's done. As a family, dig into this open-and-go study guide! #Christian #BiblicalFeasts #Bible

Learning About Biblical Feasts study guide is a really great resource for the entire family. We highly recommend it!

So, how have you learned about Biblical feasts with your children?

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie

A Christian Preschool Curriculum We Loved!

A Christian Preschool Curriculum We Loved!

*This post contains affiliate links. Please read disclosure policy.*

If you’re looking for a good quality Christian preschool curriculum for your homeschool, I know the feeling.

Having our children take in good quality education filled with wonder, purpose and fun are something we want for our kids. I was so thankful to find God’s Little Explorers!

There was no exchange of product for this review.

A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun! #preschool #preschoolcurriculum #Christianpreschool

A Preschool Christian Curriculum: God’s Little Explorers

Review Summary: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Grades Used: PreK
Pros: Loved the interaction, activity, fun and all the learning!
Cons: It was a bit more involved on my part.

Preparation

I began with reading the beginning pages of the curriculum to get to know what was expected of my child and I. The sections to read included:

  • Table of Contents
  • Welcome to God’s Little Explorers
  • How is God’s Little Explorers Christian Preschool Curriculum structured?
  • What else will I find in the program?
  • Internet links
  • Assessment
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!

Detailed Review

PROS:

  • Biblical Adventure. First and foremost, I loved that this Christian preschool curriculum was about an adventure to find God and His Word. What a fun way to learn! It was hands-on and practical right from the get-go.
  • Bible. I chose the Read & Learn Bible based on the two recommendations from this curriculum, and it was a choice I was pleased with. I have a complete review of the Bible here.
  • Structure. The organization, plan and format of the curriculum is wonderful. It keeps things moving for a preschool-aged child and provides lots of options for me. The website links provided in the PDF were amazing as it gave printables, helps and so much more.
  • Songs. Songs are wonderful in helping children memorize, learn and have fun. With the songs being Bible-based, I found that my kids were memorizing scripture, too!
  • Life Application. This is so rewarding as we help our little ones apply what they’re learning, educating them about helping the family, responsibilities and manners.
  • Optional sections. There are so many options of learning including book bags, learning bags, hymn study, composer study and artist study.
  • You are not limited! There are so many learning ideas included in this curriculum!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!
A Christian preschool curriculum that includes adventure, education and fun!

CONS:

Preparation. Although the preparation wasn’t difficult, it still took some time, though the value in what this curriculum offers did not deter me from this fact.

Preschoolers also need the most hand-holding with everything, so there’s really no way of getting around what’s needed for this age.

Our Approach

Being that I’m not a very creative person when it comes to education and ideas, I like that this curriculum has it all including an organized plan.

We didn’t do everything as suggested by the curriculum whether it was for a lack of time, too much prep or we didn’t have the supplies on hand.

Finally

Enjoy the wonder, discovery and adventure that your children are on as they find God, learn and practically apply what they’re learning through this amazing Christian preschool curriculum, God’s Little Explorers.

I’d love to hear if you’ve used this curriculum or have any questions about it; I’d be happy to answer them!

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie

REVIEW: First Language Lessons Level 1

REVIEW: First Language Lessons Level 1

*This post contains affiliate links. Please read disclosure policy.*

I was looking for a gentle approach to grammar for grade 1.

We are relaxed homeschoolers meaning we use curriculum that works for us as a family and each individual child following no specific homeschooling style. I was pleasantly surprised with First Language Lessons Level 1. It ended up being amazing for not just my grade 1 daughter, but also my preschool son!

FIRST LANGUAGE LESSONS LEVEL 1

REVIEW SUMMARY: 5 out of 5 stars

  • Grades Used: Grade 1 (and unintentionally PreK)
  • Pros: Gentle, easy-going approach
  • Cons: None
Review: First Language Lessons Level 1 - Is this curriculum right for your homeschool? Find out here!

CHILD’S LEARNING STYLE

What’s important to know (because in homeschooling we get to choose materials based on our child’s learning style), is that my daughter:

  • is a perfectionist (is hard on herself when she doesn’t get a concept immediately)
  • prefers a predictable schedule
  • can sniff when you don’t know what you’re talking about
  • black and white is calming to her

Based on my daughter’s learning style, personality type and my teaching style, below is my detailed review of First Language Lessons Level 1.

There was no exchange for product in this curriculum review. All thoughts expressed are my own.

WHAT’S IN FIRST LANGUAGE LESSONS LEVEL 1

Review: First Language Lessons Level 1 - Is this curriculum right for your homeschool? Find out here!

PREPARATION

First Language Lessons Level 1 is an all-inclusive book meaning it has both the Teacher’s and Student portion included. Isn’t that amazing!?

I began with the opening pages of the book to gain an understanding of how to use it, which includes:

 

  • Table of Contents – I wanted to know how many lessons we were conquering in the year. There are 100 Lessons.
  • How to Use This Book – the various sections included were so helpful and really imparted wisdom. Included are these subsections:
    • General Thoughts on Teaching Language
    • The Method of This Book
    • Goals for Grade 1
    • The Tools Used in This Book: The “Four Strand” Approach
    • Using the Lessons
    • Materials List
Review: First Language Lessons Level 1 - Is this curriculum right for your homeschool? Find out here!
Review: First Language Lessons Level 1 - Is this curriculum right for your homeschool? Find out here!

DETAILED REVIEW

PROS:

  • Scripted. This is just what I need! It indicates Notes to Instructor and what the Instructor needs to say.
  • There are 100 lessons. It suggests planning 2-3 lessons per week, which is such a gentle approach and one we loved.
  • Repetition = increase in memory. At the beginning you don’t know how your grade 1 child will be able to memorize a poem or definitions, especially with only doing 2-3 lessons per weekj. But just through the nature of repetition, it comes naturally. And then the surprise was suddenly hearing my preschool son say definitions and poems aloud for memory, too! I was so amazed to see what happens when you gently approach something, add repetition and application, the result is beautiful.
  • Amazing poems and stories. This book is based on good quality literature, which we value. The poems were easily memorized, and the stories are memorable with good morals. My daughter (and preschool son) LOVED listening to the stories.
  • Narration. Because there was such amazing literature, my daughter (and preschool son) found it easy to listen to the stories and recall them in their own way. They were easily able to answer the questions provided. The critical thinking part of the picture narration was an enjoyable experience for both my daughter and I.
  • Copywriting. This is not my daughter’s favourite part only because she doesn’t enjoy handwriting. We have a separate notebook for keeping her work (as was suggested in the “How To Use This Book” portion. Although my daughter doesn’t particularly like handwriting, she saw the value when it came time to doing some projects, like writing up an envelope to be mailed with the mailing and return address.

CONS (which isn’t really a con):

  • USA material. This is so minor that it doesn’t feel worthy to mention. It’s so easy to replace US material with Canadian whenever it does come up, which is seldom. (For example, it talks about state instead of province). This didn’t affect whether I’d use this book.
Review: First Language Lessons Level 1 - Is this curriculum right for your homeschool? Find out here!
Review: First Language Lessons Level 1 - Is this curriculum right for your homeschool? Find out here!

Have you tried First Language Lessons Level 1 in your homeschool? Are you considering it?

I’d like to know what were your successes and challenges with the curriculum if you did try it. Leave a comment below to let me know.

And yes, First Language Lessons Level 2 was certainly included in our Grade 2 curriculum picks.

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie

Why I’m Adding Evan-Moor’s Basic Phonics Skills Level B

Why I’m Adding Evan-Moor’s Basic Phonics Skills Level B

*This post contains affiliate links. Please read disclosure policy.*

Although choosing our homeschool curriculum is done at the beginning of our homeschool year, we also love adding new curriculum along the way. The reason for this is to change things up, work on new areas and refine skills.

So, I’ve decided to add Evan-Moor’s Basic Phonics Skills Level B to my son’s kindergarten curriculum for the year.

Why I’m Adding Evan-Moor’s Basic Phonics Skills Level B

With my son in kindergarten, we’ve been working on letter recognition and sounds.

He’s doing so well and understanding fairly quickly. But, I feel like I need to take a few different angles to help fill and prevent any gaps.

And Evan-Moor’s books are great for applying this thought so I’m incorporating the Basic Phonics Skills Level B.

Why I'm adding Evan-Moor's Daily Basic Phonics Skills Level B to our Kindergarten curriculum

REVIEW: Evan-Moor’s Basic Phonics Skills Level B (and how we’re using it)

Listen for…

The first page to a letter begins with recognizing the sound that the letter makes. This helps to identify the sound being learned by saying the word for each picture.

This works well for my son because he’s a visual and auditory learner.

I also say the word for the picture accentuating the sound. Once we’ve gone through the pictures, I do it again to make sure there’s understanding and confidence.

Handwriting with the letter sound

Anytime a page involves handwriting, my son resists.

I’ve added handwriting to what we do, but it seems to have to be on my son’s terms right now. He resists and is unwilling to do it if I point out the instructions. A benefit of homeschooling is to take this kind of thing slowly.

So I’m approaching the handwriting portion of Evan-Moor’s Basic Phonics Skills Level B book in a different way. This is in part to keep my son’s attention in learning, but to also prevent him from not wanting to do what I know he can.

How we do handwriting…

When it comes to the handwriting portion, my approach has to be creative. So I get my son to write letters on the whiteboard or chalkboard, he air-writes them, uses bands with a geoboard, or even using teddy bear counters.

We talk about the words we’re seeing and emphasize the letter sound.

When any of the pages are asking to identify if the letter sound is at the beginning or end of a word, this becomes trickier for my son, but a good challenge as he masters his phonics.

Why I'm adding Evan-Moor's Daily Basic Phonics Skills Level B to our Kindergarten curriculum
Basic Phonics Skills, Grades K-1 (Level B) - Print
Why I'm adding Evan-Moor's Daily Basic Phonics Skills Level B to our Kindergarten curriculum
Why I'm adding Evan-Moor's Daily Basic Phonics Skills Level B to our Kindergarten curriculum
Why I'm adding Evan-Moor's Daily Basic Phonics Skills Level B to our Kindergarten curriculum

Interactive activities

These types of pages my son loves, whether it’s matching, cutting and pasting.

Phonics readers

Although we haven’t gotten to the phonics readers at the back of the book just yet, I’m excited to have him read these little books and know that he is reading and can do it!

A bonus for me!

Tracking my child’s progress is important to me which is why i love the Student Record Form. It allows you to identify and write down the progress of your child. This is why I also like that this book comes in an E-book format.

Why I'm adding Evan-Moor's Daily Basic Phonics Skills Level B to our Kindergarten curriculum
Why I'm adding Evan-Moor's Daily Basic Phonics Skills Level B to our Kindergarten curriculum
Why I'm adding Evan-Moor's Daily Basic Phonics Skills Level B to our Kindergarten curriculum

If you’re looking to help your child with phonics, the Evan-Moor’s Basic Phonics Skills Level B is a great resource!

Have you used this book in your homeschool?

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie

REVIEW: Evan-Moor Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-book

REVIEW: Evan-Moor Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-book

*This post contains affiliate links. Please read disclosure policy.*

I was looking for a resource that would supplement and provide extra support in helping my child with phonics and reading. I found that Evan-Moor has a Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-book, and thought it might be a good fit and I was pleasantly surprised!

I had the pleasure of reviewing Evan-Moor’s Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-book in exchange for my honest review.

The Struggle With Reading

My daughter has found reading to be a challenge. Although she can easily tell me individual letter sounds, it’s reading blends and sight words that have been a bit of a struggle.

She’s been so disheartened at times.

I see her lack of self-confidence and the disappointment in herself for just having to work so hard to get what she feels like she should already know.

So to avoid any resentment towards reading, we have slowed right down and chosen to be intentional in what we do to help her read.

With that, I’ve decided to add in reinforcements and supplements to my daughter’s grade 2 curriculum helping her see quick wins and build confidence. This has proved to be a great decision using Evan-Moor’s Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-Book!

Evan-Moor Daily Phonics Grade 1 Curriculum Review E-book

How We’re Using Evan-Moor’s Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-Book

Our approach and goal in using this curriculum is to:

  • reinforce the phonics that have already been learned
  • help build my daughter’s memory work
  • develop confidence
  • see quick-wins
  • move at our own pace

Because this is our approach, the e-book works best for us. (The HP Instant Ink subscription has been a life-saver!) I just print out the sheets we need as we go along.

How We're Using Evan-Moor's Daily Phonics Grade 1 Our approach and goal in using this curriculum is to reinforce what's already been learned and to help build my daughter's memory work. Because this is our approach, the e-book works best for us. (The HP Instant Ink subscription has been a life-saver!)  Based on what we're working on during our reading lessons, or the review we're doing, I print out the sheets we need. We don't go in order of the book, although, that can work, too if it's being used as a complete curriculum.
How We're Using Evan-Moor's Daily Phonics Grade 1 Our approach and goal in using this curriculum is to reinforce what's already been learned and to help build my daughter's memory work. Because this is our approach, the e-book works best for us. (The HP Instant Ink subscription has been a life-saver!)  Based on what we're working on during our reading lessons, or the review we're doing, I print out the sheets we need. We don't go in order of the book, although, that can work, too if it's being used as a complete curriculum.

The Pros of the Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-book

  • Lessons are short. This made the curriculum approachable for both my daughter and I. With shorter lessons, it also brought quick wins, which is exactly what I was looking for.
  • You set the speed. Although we could follow the lesson plan (which is daily for 32 weeks and simple to follow), we found that we could also do what worked for us. So we sometimes combined 2 days into 1 or skipped some days if my daughter had the concept mastered.
  • Lessons are simple to understand. There’s no confusion as to what was being asked of each lesson.
  • Language Arts fundamentals are included. I’m fond of the multi-sensory approach involving listening, reading, writing, speaking and spelling.
  • Print what you need. If extra review was needed, I could print out extra copies easily.
  • Scripted Teacher’s Manual. I like a scripted format when it comes to a teacher’s manual, and this curriculum has it and it’s easy to follow.
  • Answer Key. Found at the back of the book. It’s a great inclusion if needed.
How We're Using Evan-Moor's Daily Phonics Grade 1 Our approach and goal in using this curriculum is to reinforce what's already been learned and to help build my daughter's memory work. Because this is our approach, the e-book works best for us. (The HP Instant Ink subscription has been a life-saver!)  Based on what we're working on during our reading lessons, or the review we're doing, I print out the sheets we need. We don't go in order of the book, although, that can work, too if it's being used as a complete curriculum.
How We're Using Evan-Moor's Daily Phonics Grade 1 Our approach and goal in using this curriculum is to reinforce what's already been learned and to help build my daughter's memory work. Because this is our approach, the e-book works best for us. (The HP Instant Ink subscription has been a life-saver!)  Based on what we're working on during our reading lessons, or the review we're doing, I print out the sheets we need. We don't go in order of the book, although, that can work, too if it's being used as a complete curriculum.

The Cons of the Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-book

  • Nothing. We didn’t find anything that both my daughter and I didn’t like, although a colour option would be a great alternative.
Daily Phonics, Grade 1 - Teacher's Edition, E-book

For your copy of the Evan-Moor Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-book, get it here.

What products have you used to help your child with phonics?

Have you used Evan-Moor’s Daily Phonics Grade 1 E-book? How did it work in your homeschool? Let me know in the comments below.

Anchored in Jesus,
Melanie