Teaching reading can be fun and rewarding for families who teach at home! When children become strong readers at an early age, they are more likely to become better learners throughout their school years and beyond. IEM Charter Schools believe students are most successful when parents are given the power of choice to personalize their children’s education and choose their curriculum. We strive to provide parents with a wide variety of curriculum options and resources to teach the five components of reading (#powerofchoice): Phonemic Awareness, Phonics, Fluency, Comprehension, and Vocabulary.
- Phonemic Awareness – Phonemic awareness refers to hearing that words are made up of a combination of individual sounds. For example, the word bat is made up of three sounds (phonemes) /b/ /a/ and /t/. When these three sounds are combined fluidly, they make up the word bat. Recognizing that bat, ball, and baby all have the same initial sound demonstrates phonemic awareness. A few programs which help to develop phonemic awareness are Sing, Spell, Read, Write; McGraw-Hill Treasures; Pearson Reading Street; SIPPS (Center for Collaborative Classroom); The Writing Road to Reading (Spalding Education International); All About Reading/Spelling; Zoo Phonics; Reading Eggs (online); Starfall (online); Lexia Reading (online); Explode the Code; Saxon Phonics; Rocket Phonics.
- Phonics – Phonics refers to seeing the relationship between letters and the sounds they represent. When a reader encounters an unknown word, the knowledge of phonics allows him to separate the written word into its individual sounds and blend those sounds to make words. For example, with the word ship, a child might separate the word into pieces such as /sh/ /i/ /p/ (or /sh/ /ip/), assigning an appropriate sound to each separate letter or combination of letters. Then, the child combines those sounds to create the word ship. A few programs which help to develop phonics skills are Sing, Spell, Read, Write; McGraw-Hill Treasures; Pearson Reading Street; SIPPS (Center for Collaborative Classroom); The Writing Road to Reading (Spalding Education International); All About Reading/Spelling; Zoo Phonics; Reading Eggs (online); Starfall (online); Lexia Reading (online); Explode the Code; Saxon Phonics; Rocket Phonics.
- Fluency – Fluency refers to the ability to read text accurately, smoothly, and naturally with expression and develops over time with practice. Readers who struggle with fluency may need to strengthen their decoding skills. A few programs which help to develop fluency and decoding skills are Read Naturally (Book/CD); One Minute Reader (Book/CD / Read Naturally); Read Live (online / Read Naturally); Reading Plus (online).
- Vocabulary – Vocabulary refers to the understanding that the words on the page correspond to the words encountered in a reader’s everyday life. While children do not have to know every word on the page to understand what they are reading, too many new or difficult words lowers comprehension. As reading levels increase, so do the number of words readers need to know. A few programs which help to develop vocabulary are Wordly Wise (Educators Publishing Services/ EPS); Vocabulary Workshop (W. H. Sadlier); Vocabu-Lit (Rainbow Resource Center); Vocabulary from Classical Roots (Rainbow Resource Center); Vocabulary Cartoons; Vocabulary Fundamentals (Evan-Moor); Hot Dots Vocabulary in Context.
- Text Comprehension – Text comprehension refers to the interaction between the reader and the text. More than simply decoding words on a page, comprehension is the intentional thinking process that occurs as the child reads. This is what reading is all about! The following strategies support comprehension: monitoring comprehension, using prior knowledge, making predictions, questioning, recognizing story structure, summarizing. A few programs which help to develop comprehension are Best Practices in Reading (Triumph Learning); Reading Plus (online); Achieve3000 (online / Homeschool Buyer’s Co-Op).
Students enrolled in IEM schools take the iReady local assessment to determine current reading performance levels in the following areas: phonemic awareness, phonics, comprehension, and vocabulary. iReady online lessons provide targeted instruction to address specific needs. Struggling students can receive additional support through print and online curriculum and tutoring resources. Education Specialists are here to assist families in choosing curriculum from among the wide variety of options available to them by their IEM charter school.
Reference: Put Reading First: Helping Your Child Learn to Read (Teacher’s Guide), National Institute for Literacy: The Partnership for Reading. The findings and conclusions in this publication were drawn from the 2000 report of the National Reading Panel, Teaching Children to Read: An Evidence-Based Assessment of the Scientific Research Literature on Reading and Its Implications for Reading Instruction—Reports of the Subgroups.