7/19/2011

A Review of All About Reading Level Pre-1

"Do you know why I want to do school?" [She giggles] "I want to get Ziggy."

Ziggy is a cute zebra puppet that sometimes gets confused... much to my little one's delight.

For example, in Lesson 1, she played a "Rhyming Body Parts" game with Ziggy. Ziggy says, "Let's play a game together. I will point to a body part and tell you what it is. If I say it wrong, you tell me the right word."

[Ziggy points to her shoulder] "This is your holder," he says.

She giggles and says, "No, it's my shoulder!"

We play through the scripted list until Ziggy finally gets one right at the end... and my child is introduced to the concept of rhyming. To her, it was a game, but much to my delight, she was learning an important concept.

Rhyming encourages phonological awareness, one of the "Big Five Skills" in All About Reading Level Pre-1.

The Big Five Skills, according to Marie Rippel, are the most important pre-reading skills for young children and include:
  1. Print Awareness
  2. Phonological Awareness
  3. Letter Knowledge
  4. Listening Comprehension
  5. Motivation to read
These skills are the heart of All About Reading Level Pre-1.



We received The Deluxe Package, which includes:
The Deluxe Package is available for purchase for $119.95. The Basic Package includes the first six items for $79.95.  At this price, my only wish is that the Student Activity Book was reproducible for additional students; however, this is the only part of the program that is consumable - the rest of the program can be used again and again.

The teacher's manual contains full lesson plans and ready to use activities, and is fully scripted. Lessons 1- 26 focus on capital letters, lessons 27-52 focus on lowercase letters, and lesson 53-78 focus on the sounds of the letters, and the Big Five Skills are found throughout the lessons.

Our lessons in Section 1 begin by singing the alphabet song. (Marie explains why the Alphabet Song is important and offers tips for teaching it.) We point to the letters on the Capital Letter Chart as each letter is named.

I say, "Today's letter is A!" and have her find it on the chart. Then I read the poem for the letter in The Zigzag Zebra (the poems are short but endearing). I ask her if she can find the A in the text. Then she does an ABC craft sheet for capital letter A.  (The craft sheets focus on the process, not the end product, but this is her least favorite part of the program. She does not like to color, so I have her paint, or stamp the letter on the craft sheet, or I color with her).

Then, I choose one or more activities to complete with her. These are hands-on activities that promote letter knowledge. We used our quilted rag letters for tracing, do sky-writing, do salt tracing, mold letters with play dough, stamp with alphabet stamps, and more.

When we got to C and D, I could not resist some Cookie Dough fun.



One thing I appreciate about the lessons is that concepts are introduced gently and they build on each other so I know that if my daughter doesn't understand a lesson, she will get it after a few more lessons. It took her a few lessons to learn to rhyme, but after she understood the concept, she was telling me words that rhyme outside of our lessons. 

At the end of every lesson, you are encouraged to read aloud to your child for twenty minutes. Marie even gives some tips on how to incorporate this into your day.   

There are plenty of more gems throughout this program - it's a keeper, for sure. 

I put a lot of effort into my Alphabet Fun program with Malachi when he was four - we focused on a new letter each week and I came up with a lot of ideas that made learning fun (and filled my cup). But this honestly has been so simple and EASY. . .  and my cup is overflowing. The lessons are fun, engaging, simple, and fulfilling. I don't have a desire to do more. This is all I need. My child was engaged, playing games, doing craft sheets and listening to delightful stories. . . really, this is all she needs.

Level 1 is scheduled to come out this Fall and I am delighted. I am currently using All About Spelling Level 1 with my 6 year old (we are on lesson 11), and I'm stalling so that we can use All About Reading too! And Eliana and I will continue to work through the lessons in Level Pre-1 ~ All About Reading is on our shelf to stay.

See an update on our progress to see more! 

Disclosure: I received All About Reading Level Pre-1 in exchange for an honest review. Thanks All About Learning Press

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