- Reviewed on Thursday, May 5, 2016
- Grades Used: Kindergarten
- Dates used: 2015-2016
My child has struggled to learn to read. We've tried a few different approaches and this one worked. Granted, there were some days where it was still a battle BUT this book has taught her to read and read extraordinaryly well. I honestly can't argue with those results. I even spotted her pulling books off the shelf and reading for leisure the other day. SO, if your child is struggling to read, this program does work. That doesn't mean it's a magic pill that will make it a smooth ride but, if you stick with it, it will work. On a side note, I skipped the writing parts and used a separate writing program. I would also recommend not having the child read everything twice like the book says to do; it will make the lesson drag on too long and they will start to get fidgety and bored.
- Reviewed on Tuesday, October 27, 2015
- Grades Used: K
- Dates used: 2014-2015
After looking at many options, we choose this for teaching my 6-year-old grandson to read. We used it for Kindergarten. Most of the curriculum we purchased for him was hands-on, so this was the only sit-down time except for handwriting.
It worked beautifully with very small adaptions. We loved how only a few sounds were introduced at a time, and how quickly he was reading the words. We also appreciated the simple pages with large print, lots of white space. There is a lot of white space and very few pictures to distract from the words.
Reading time was spent cuddled together on the couch with lots of encouragement. One adjustment we made was not to even try to finish a lesson at a time. This six-year-old boy is a typical wiggly child. We spent no more then ten minutes each day, so it took his entire Kindergarten year to complete the lessons, but that wasn't a problem for us. About halfway through the book, we added fun books for him to read before bed. We were thrilled to see him adapt seamlessly from the lesson book to real books.
This program taught him to read painlessly. He never rebelled about reading time and he learned all the sounds and how to blend them, so that he easily tackles other reading matter now. He began first grade in September and we are thrilled with how easily he is working through the books we've purchased. He has been given a solid phonics background.
- Reviewed on Wednesday, April 2, 2014
- Grades Used: K
- Dates used: 2013-2014
The cover of this book says "easy," "only 20 minutes a day," and "joy." Unfortunately, my son and I found none of these to be true.
Yes, the curriculum is "easy" in the sense that there are no manipulatives, no cutting and pasting, no dog and pony show. You just sit down next to your child on the couch and go through the scripted lesson. However, my son did not seem to "get it," and here it is, spring, and I am switching to Explode the Code because my son still has trouble blending sounds to read words. I really wish I had ditched 100 lessons sooner, but I kept thinking I just needed to give it time. As other reviewers have stated, the lessons take more like 45 minutes, not 20. Also, we didn't feel much joy as we went through the book. Many lessons ended with both of us in tears. I felt so horrible about it because my son was so excited about learning to read.
In my opinion, here are the cons:
1. The book is just dry for a child, especially a rambunctious five year old boy. If your child is compliant and sits quietly for long periods of time, it may work for you.
2. The intro to the book makes you feel like you will ruin everything if you deviate even slightly from the book's script. Which leads me to . . .
3. Reading the the fast way. Starting in lesson 18, the book asks the child to "read the fast way." Meaning, sounding out the word in your head and then just saying it. My son was ok with it at first, when I read the word and he repeated it, but when he had to start reading the fast way on his own (lesson 31), he started melting down. I finally eased off and just let him sound it out. But I felt I was failing because of #2.
4. The book is also adamant that you make the letter sounds a certain way. This is fine if you live in, I don't know, North Dakota? But if you live in the deep south, like we do, we found it almost impossible to say the sounds the way the book said to. (Although it was the one time we giggled - when mommy kept trying to correct him and then saying it the exact same way he just did!)
5. The reading selections got way too long half way through. I am talking about three or four paragraphs for an emerging reader with no pictures! My son would just look at the page and start to cry. Then, the book wanted him to read it a SECOND time "the fast way." Did I mention we both cried a lot using this curriculum?
Thankfully, my son still loves books. He begs to be read to, and I know he is frustrated that he can't read yet. I honestly don't think it is a matter of him not being ready. He loves reading the BOB books, the Dick and Jane readers, and some of the Bright and Early Beginner books. He likes it, but he still needs lots of help from me and I know he is guessing a lot based on pictures and context. I regret putting him through the torture that was 100 lessons. At least it was that way for us.
- Reviewed on Thursday, September 26, 2013
- Grades Used: PreK - 1st
- Dates used: 2009 - 2013
I used this book as a litmus test when I was exploring the possibility of teaching my children at home. My four-year-old son asked me repeatedly when he could learn to read so I used this book to see if his interest was real. He was finished with the lessons by the time he was five and then went through all the books it listed at the end.
My son is now 10 and reads voraciously. He loves books and sees them as a resource to answer his own questions and fuel his interests. He volunteers weekly at our local library and brings home books constantly.
My eight-year-old daughter has had similar success and even though she doesn't have the same appetite for books as my son, her facility in reading has helped her to find books she is interested in. In essence, because she has the skills to read, she doesn't give up on finding books that she likes.
I am currently on lesson 39 with my five-year-old and she and I love it. The book is steady and consistent and she improves EVERY day.
None of us have ever found "Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons" to be dry or boring. It is cumulative and repetitive to reinforce skills. The stories are humorous and fun for the kids to read. The pictures add interest and motivation. It only takes a couple weeks for the child to be reading small stories that make them feel like a "reader."
As a parent make sure to read every page of the introductory material. I am on my third child and in two years will use it again with my fourth. I re-read the introduction each time to make sure I am doing it right.
Also, children are not ready to learn to read at the same time. When I started the lessons with one daughter I could tell after about twelve lessons she wasn't ready so we stopped and tried again six months later. That made all the difference.