Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What's Next for Miss O

Miss O has only about two more weeks worth of work in her Handwriting Without Tears Pre K book, and about 5 to 6 weeks before she finishes off the Explode the Code Primers (A and B are already finished, and C is part way finished). I was at Borders the other day, and decided on the following two workbooks for use after she finishes what she is working on now.

For use after the Explode the Code Primers, I am going to use this very large workbook called Get Ready for Pre K. Right now Little Bean is about halfway through Book 1 of the ETC series, which is the next step up from the primers that Miss O is finishing now. I just think that there is a big jump between Book C and Book 1, and Miss O isn't ready to move to Book 1 any time soon (which requires some decoding skills). The workbook I've chosen will provide her with several months of material to work through, and I'm hoping that by the time we finish this one, Miss O will have her letter sounds down pat. At that time I am thinking about using Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading with her on the recommendation of a friend, or I may just go with 100 Lessons, since that is what I am using with Little Bean. This workbook teaches the alphabet sounds, numbers, shapes, colors, writing, counting, basic concepts like same and different, matching, and practical life things like matching the correct clothing to the correct seasons. Many of these concepts are included in the ETC Primers, but some of them are bonus material that I think will be really fun for her. It is bright and cheery, and very well laid out.
Here is a sample of some tracing activities in the workbook:
Practicing letter sounds and formation:
Matching the clothes to the appropriate seasons:
For handwriting, I decided on a Kumon workbook--My First Book of Uppercase Letters. The font is different than what she has gotten used to in Handwriting Without Tears, but it's not so different that I think it'll make a difference to her. What I liked about the Kumon workbook is that it is mostly tracing. Miss O is not quite ready to write letters on her own, so tracing is ideal for her. I'll use this book to reinforce the sounds of the alphabet as well as continue practicing letter formation. When we are done with this one and the other book above, I'm hoping that she will be ready for the Handwriting Without Tears K book, which doesn't rely on tracing, but on actual formation of the letters. Another good thing about the Kumon book is that the letter practice is ordered intentionally. Rather that just a simple writing workbook that goes in alphabetical order, Kumon introduces the letters based on their level of difficulty, and groups similar letters together, to be learned simultaneously, much like the Handwriting Without Tears curriculum does. I plan to follow the Kumon workbook's order of letter introduction when using the Get Ready for Pre K book as well, so that Miss O is working on the same letter in both books simultaneously.
Here's a sample page from the uppercase Kumon book. Notice how the tracing gets progressively more difficult as the child gets more practice with the particular letter:


Jackie said...

That looks like some really good choices. I have looked at the "Get Ready For Pre-K" book myself. I also use the Kumon Uppercase Letters. My grandson doesn't like the HWT book too much. So for right now we are just using the wood letters, the chalkboard and the Kumon book. We also just started using the ETC book A. I will look forward to seeing how your new items work for you.

Sharon said...

I am encouraged. I just purchased ETC ABC books. This is our first purchase!!!! I would like to know where you got the books you talk about in this post.

Jennifer said...

Sharon--Borders! If you sign up for Border Rewards, you will get coupons in your email box each week too, which really helps out! Usually I do a lot of my purchasing on Amazon. I hope you enjoy the ETC books. :) Miss O loves them!

Cynthia said...

Hi! we use the explode the code primer books and are looking into the handwriting withour tears maybe for Kinder. How is that working for you? I am begining to look into what I will be using for Kindergarten, Any advice?

Also have you heard of Borders Educators discount card? It's also for home educators You save 25% on your purchase

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