Monday, May 12, 2014

End of Year Curriculum Review: Phonics

Over the next few weeks, I'll be reviewing last year's curriculum and planning for next year. Sharing what works for us, why I like it, and what I'll be using in the fall. Hopefully, it will lead to a dialog where we all learn and share together :)

Phonics:  Modern Curriculum Press 

It took many tries to find a phonics curriculum that interested Madeline. Finally, we found Modern Curriculum Press {MCP}. It was suggested by a master teacher who taught reading for 40 years! 

This year Madeline finished Level B, and has about 25% more to complete Level C. We've used the whole series, starting with Level K and then continuing on to our current workbook.

Just a note, the workbooks were updated in the last decade or so. They have been published for the last 50 years though!

Some of the workbooks you can purchase new online are the older version with the plaid only cover, no animals pictured. The older versions are still excellent! We started with the older versions of K and A.

I purchase my MCP books through Amazon. None of my local teacher supply stores seem to carry them.

A strong phonics foundation is essential for good reading. MCP teaches the basics with enough repetition so that the students really learn phonics. There are a variety of exercises:  filling in the blank, crossword puzzles, short reading books, multiple choice, and writing exercises. Teachers guides are available, but not really needed.

The inside back cover has helpful terms and rules. So if your child is working on page comparing vowel pairs and vowel diphthongs, they can find the rules and definitions and complete their page independently.

The cost is very reasonable! Each workbook cost between $10-$12. We can typically cover one and a half to two workbooks a year.

There is no answer key unless you buy the teachers edition. That being said, I've not needed one yet :)

Also, why did they start with K and then go to A? Why not start with K for kinder and then move to 1, 2, 3, etc.? I think their letter designations are confusing if you are used to grade level classifications or are unfamiliar with the product. The content is so good, however, that it's not a deal breaker for me.

Absolutely, unequivocally YES! We'll continue with the series until it ends :)

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