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mommamo 01-16-2008 01:09 PM

Learning to Read
DD (4) is wanting to learn to read. We've been doing MFW K but it's just not working for us. I"m sure it's great for some people, but I've learned it's just really not my style. Anyway.... she's liking the phonics stuff and she wants to read, but I was wanting to get some opinions on other programs. So-I've heard a lot about Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons and also Reading Made Easy. Does anyone have experience with those two? She already knows most of her letter sounds (doesn't know soft c or g yet, and only knows short vowels) and can read some 3 letter words. She loves Word World and Super Why on PBS and has learned a lot from those and we've got the leap frog movies and she loves those too. I was just wondering if anyone had experience with those two learn to read programs. I've heard some negatives about 100 Easy Lessons in the past, but also a ton of positives, so that's why I was wondering! Thanks!

The Tickle Momster 01-16-2008 01:29 PM

Re: Learning to Read
100EL isn't my favorite way to go with reading philosophically. But, it works. My dd learned from it at 4.5. :tu Many libraries have it, so you could check it out & try it.

Reading Made Easy is a lot more parent work to prep, I think. Other than that, I think it's laid out in a similar manner to 100EL but doesn't use the phonetic writing that 100EL does.

You can check them both out at

mommamo 01-16-2008 01:54 PM

Re: Learning to Read
Thanks for the website. I read the reviews. I still don't know which I'll do. I don't mind the prep-I know I'm about to have a baby so we'll probably take time off then.... But I know she's ready to learn to read and what we're doing just isn't working for us. I think it's moving too slowly in some ways and too quickly in others for her. I realize nothing's perfect but.... I wish I could try them both out and then decide. I do like the Reading Made Easy includes sight words. Does 100 EZ lessons?

my2boys 01-20-2008 07:51 PM

Re: Learning to Read
Hi there.

My ds learned to read at 4 with Reading Made Easy. It really worked well for about the first quarter of the curriculum and then we stopped sometime after learning the long vowels...which comes after learning the short vowels...anyways, we stopped because he took off reading on his own. No longer content to read the short stories or word lists, but real books from the library.

We loved RME. It was scripted which was great for me because I was new to this and very unsure of myself. It is just open and go. I had looked at learning to read in 100 lessons and didn't like the looks of it. This seemed to fit us so good.

We had lots of fun. Check out samples at One thing we did was cover up the picture that went with the short sentence he had to read at the end of the lesson (by the way they start reading words very soon into the curriculum) It was a surprise for him to see the "funny picture" as he put it. Then there are scripted questions about the picture to get your child talking and thinking about what they see. Also, I printed out the sentence on paper and cut out each word (very quick to do...) and we scrambled it up. He then would LOVE to put it in order. After that we made up funny sentences...using the words to make a sentence that didn't make sense. The neat thing was everytime we did that he would be READING the words...doesn't matter if they are in the right order or not, right? :)

It is also scripted into the lessons on what a period letter at the beginning of a sentence, etc.

I enjoyed the short time we used this before he took off reading.


illinoismommy 01-20-2008 10:20 PM

Re: Learning to Read

BHope 01-20-2008 10:27 PM

Re: Learning to Read

mommamo 01-21-2008 10:25 AM

Re: Learning to Read
Well, based on that glowing recomendation, we decided to go with RME! The phonetic spelling thing that was mentined with 100 EZ lessons seemed a little too off for me. I know tons of kids have learned to read with it, but.... Thank you for the tons of extra suggestions to go with RME! That sounds like a lot of fun. I ordered the CD version so I'll have to either print it out or we can do it sitting at the computer if I'm low on ink, LOL. I'll report back how we like it once we get going.

Oh-for those who have used this, do you think we need to start at the very beginning or could I potentially start with what is new for dd. She knows all her hard consonant sounds, and short vowels. Do you think I should start at the beginning with her or start with what is new?

teamommy 01-21-2008 01:45 PM

Re: Learning to Read
There is a little book by Ruth Beechick called "The Three R's".

It is inexpensive and I would recommend it to anyone as a general guide for teaching pre-reading, phonics, and building fluency. Really, in itself it has everything you need to know, but I also think it's very helpful as a go-along even if you decide to do a mapped-out phonics program like RME or various others. I used a few different things to teach reading, but I keep referring to this for reading, writing and math in the early years.

mommamo 01-21-2008 02:00 PM

Re: Learning to Read
Great! Thanks for the info. I've heard of that but never read it. I'll see if my library can get it for me if they don't have it.

Vipers_Princess 01-21-2008 06:15 PM

Re: Learning to Read
subbing so I remember to check into RME

my2boys 01-21-2008 09:12 PM

Re: Learning to Read
Hi there... me again with RME in front of me. I started this with my ds at shortly after he turned 4...he knew all his letters and sounds when I started this. I started with lesson one just because I though the review would be good...I also wanted it to be fun...not too challenging and difficult at the beginning. After all he IS plenty young as is yours. I just noticed we only got to lesson 33 before he took off reading on his own...not even a quarter of the way through. I imagine my next ds will not be as easy to teach...this one kind of taught himself. Hence the reason I am even homeschooling in the first place. This was never an option to me until he taught himself the sounds of the letters at 3 and was begging me to teach him to read.

Just remember that you don't have to do every suggested activity. Do only what works for you and your child.


Teacher Mom 01-22-2008 12:27 PM

Re: Learning to Read
Ok. We have made this topic a stickie. It seems to come up every few months. I first want to encourage all GCMer's that you can teach your child to read. Just make sure that the child is doing some type of prereading for some amount of time. For example, reading the sign for Wal-mart, Target, Subway, McDonalds, etc. As many of us have learned the hard way, if the child is not reading to learn, it will be very frustrating for both parent and child.

I went back a few threads and gathered different suggestions from others. I tried listing them in order of phonics or sight words depending on your philisophy and your child's learning style. If any additions or modifications need to be made, please PM me.

I hope this helps!!! In no particular order:


Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading
Progressive Phonics
Reading Made Easy with Blend Phonics for First Grade (website)
Starfall (website)
Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons

Sight Words

Bob Books
Dr. Seuss
Now I'm Reading (readers)
Step Into Reading (book series)
Teach a Child to Read with Children's Books

illinoismommy 01-22-2008 09:08 PM

Re: Learning to Read

Originally Posted by Teacher Mom
Ok. We have made this topic a stickie. It seems to come up every few months. I first want to encourage all GCMer's that you can teach your child to read. Just make sure that the child is doing some type of prereading for some amount of time. For example, reading the sign for Wal-mart, Target, Subway, McDonalds, etc.

Oh prereading means reading signs like that? Do you mean they just have it memorized because they know the symbol or because they really know the word itself? I don't really know what pre-reading is and I'd like to hear more about it

Teacher Mom 01-22-2008 09:58 PM

Re: Learning to Read
Sure! No, they do not know the sounds the letters make. But they are sight reading the word. It's when they start to understand that the mumble jumble of letters means something. They recognize that Wal-Mart stores say Wal-mart. Target stores say Target, etc.

I am just now remembering this. I read the book How to Teach Your Baby to Read when my kids were 2 and 4 years old. (I had to look up the subject "reading" on the library website to find this title) It talked about word recognition and labeling things around the home. Also to have cards with family and pet names and use them in a flashcard style. I used that with my kids. Table, chair, refrigerator, stove, sink, tv, radio, etc. Everything in our home had a label on it. I made my own to save money, but I have now seen cards available at Walmart. It was a lot of work writing the words out and I wish Walmart would have had them back then!!! Not sure if they were household names though????

It just helps the child realize that these crazy, wavey, straight lines mean something.

blessmybirth 02-09-2008 12:54 PM

Re: Learning to Read
Great topic!

I am currently teaching my six year old son to read. We are using An Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading. I'm going with the phonics approach, obviously. It's going great. I like that the program offers us the flexibility to only move to the next lesson when he's ready. We've been taking a couple of days per page. He just started reading the Bob Books (got 'em at Costco) and he's really proud, if he doesn't feel like he's getting anywhere with his reading "lesson" the Bob Books help him to realize he IS reading! He's on book 3 "Dot."

I started him around age four doing Hooked on Phonics and that's how he was introduced to the letter sounds. It was fun for him to play all the games provided and mark his progress on the poster.

I ought to mention that I really appreciate Jessie Wise's information in the parent's sections of An Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading, it inspired a great confidence in my abilities and intuition regarding my son's reading.

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