Monday, November 9, 2009

Progressive Phonics
A few people have asked me of my opinion of Progressive Phonics. Let me state upfront that this post is not endorsed by Progressive Phonics in any way. I write it, because I really like this comprehensive reading program. I am not saying that every child is ready to learn to read before 3, but my daughter was definitely interested. We did since she was under 1 year old, and it’s a wonderful site. But Smarty was getting bored with the same games, and I was looking for something a bit formal. Then I stumbled upon Progressive Phonics and immediately liked what I saw:
1. The program is completely free.
2. There are several starting points. Children that are not very solid on their alphabet yet can start with Alphabet Books. More advanced pre-readers can immediately jump to Phonics books. We started directly with Phonics.
3. I like how this program makes reading a truly joint effort between a parent and a child. Each book has many short stories with fun illustrations on each page. The child is expected to read red words, and the parent reads the rest to make up the full story. As the difficulty level increases, the number of “red words” increases until the child is expected to read the whole story. Smarty is not a big fan of those pages :)
4. Activity packs that come with each book have different things that appeal to different learning styles. There are memory games, handwriting exercises, etc.
5. The program can be used with any age, and you can go as fast or as slow as you want. My daughter just turned 3, and after about 5 months we are in the middle of intermediate section. Specific books can be used to help struggling older readers as well.
Cons: Printing the course consumes a lot of paper, and I don’t like sitting in front of the computer while learning to read. I read somewhere on the site that they plan to offer this program “in the box” for a fee, and in my mind it would be a good investment. The neat thing is that you can really “try this program” before you buy anything.
If you check out Progressive Phonics, please come back and tell me what you think. I hope to see other moms using it with the same success that we had here.


Diana said...

I am going to look into this program when I have a bit more time to myself. It looks really good. Thanks for the review. I'm always looking for great phonics programs and readers.

Julie said...

Thank you for this recommendation. I've never heard of this program before but I just registered and downloaded the first few books. M already knows her uppercase letters, but not the lowercase. So I'm going to start with the alphabetti books and see how she does. It's hard for me to imagine she could start reading at 33 months though!

Nicole {tired, need sleep} said...

Thanks for the link - I've read about this program on your blog before but didn't realize it was totally free and something online. I just took a quick look at the site and it looks like a great program!!

whisperingwhispers said...

I am with you on Progressive Phonics! Selena enjoys it and has learned a lot.

I can see where it is not for every child especially under the age of 3 but I highly reccomend it myself.

Momma Snail said...

I haven't heard of this! I just posted a huge post about free reading resources and curriculum and I will have to add this. Thanks! I love your blog, by the way!

Tara Rison said...

Thank you for the in-depth answer to my question. I can't wait to have a some time to check it out! Once I do, I will let you know what I think.

Take care!

Donette said...

thanks for the post.
Downloading a few books right now

Eva said...

nice, I can't wait to try it out, I've printed one of the booklets a while back but have yet to get around to reading it with my daughter

Ticia said...

I agree all the printing is the main thing that's held me up on this, but I think once I get another print cartridge I might make the plunge and try it out.

Susana said...

I am still trying this program unsuccessfully to be honest. I have printed out the first several books and just haven't had success using them with Joe. I keep trying every few months though. It's weird, as of this week he can spell 3 letter words out loud and write them on paper if I call them out, he can match three letter words to their correct picture--he does these things without any problems and quickly, but he cannot read the words. Blows my mind--waiting for it to click! When it does, I will try Progressive Phonics again!

I am still so amazed at Anna's reading abilities. You are doing an unbelievable job with her!

Quirky Momma said...

Blogged about this! Thanks for the heads up about this great FREE program - E is enjoying Progressive Phonics!!!

I linked to your post:

Joyful Learner said...

We tried Progresseive Phonics but it was too dry for JC. She preferred colorful, interesting stories and I don't think she enjoyed the repetition. I'm happy I finally found readers that she loves!