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99 Reviews
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62 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
I bought this book 6 months ago to start teaching our then 3.5 yr old daughter. We felt she was ready to at least start learning phonics (she started talking at 18 months old) as she was showing an increased interest in 'reading' and 'writing' (although she's certainly not a 'gifted child'!).
I have to say I didn't really believe that the book would "do what it said...
Published on 4 Sept. 2005 by bexr

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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars very good but takes too long to start normal text
This is a really good book but takes too long to go from their script to proper writing and it is also not very appealing to children being all in red and black with few proper pictures. The first 30 lessons are brilliant for bridging the gap between knowing letters and then going on to words. I would say that unless your child is very motivated and you have a lot of...
Published on 30 May 2006 by Amazon Customer


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62 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book, 4 Sept. 2005
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
I bought this book 6 months ago to start teaching our then 3.5 yr old daughter. We felt she was ready to at least start learning phonics (she started talking at 18 months old) as she was showing an increased interest in 'reading' and 'writing' (although she's certainly not a 'gifted child'!).
I have to say I didn't really believe that the book would "do what it said on the tin", but I am delighted to say it can! We are now on Lesson 70 (of 100), and I am amazed at what our daughter can now read at just 4 years old!
The book recommends that you do a lesson each day. We don't always do that, as some days we don't have time, but I would certainly advise not leaving more than 1 or 2 days between 'lesson days' and definitely make time in the morning rather than the afternoon. However, you must read exactly what is on the page, as I've tried 'adapting' it to what I thought fitted my child best and I ended up going back a few lessons and reading it verbatim. The only extras I do put in are a lot more praise.
The book is recommended for "bright 3.5-yr-olds, and average 4 and 5 yr olds". I wouldn't suggest any earlier, as your child will need to write each letter they learn, and so they need to have developed their fine motor skills sufficiently. However, even if you only manage 20 or so lessons before your child starts school, it will help them no end, as it is exactly the system used in schools.
Finally, I was once told by someone trained in education that there are always 'natural readers' who are able to be told how a word sounds and remember it. That's all well and good until they try to read a word they haven't seen before! This book teaches how to read words properly by learning 'phonics' and blending them in a way in which we speak ourselves. Therefore, your child will eventually be able to pick up a book and read it, and attempt a word that they have not seen before themselves! Imagine their absolute joy when they achieve that on their own...
I cannot recommend this book any higher...it's extremely good.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent., 5 Dec. 2006
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
In Lesson 1 my son learnt to read the letters m and s. In lesson 100 he read a story of about 200 words, here are a few sentences from that story to give you an idea of the progress made: "The tiger came over and licked the old man on the nose. The old man said, "You can not do that. Tigers do not lick. They bite.""

This book is excellent however it is demanding. On the cover it says that the lessons take 20 minutes a day and at first that's true but later on they can take anywhere from half an hour to an hour. Progress is rapid but quite often you will have to repeat a day so the child feels comfortable, including these days and unavoidable missed days it has taken me and my son about 5 months.

The book is very good at teaching a committed and enthusiastic adult how to teach a committed and enthusiastic child to read, if your child isn't eager or if your child isn't happy to sit and concentrate then it might be too soon to try this book. It has been frustrating and challenging for both of us but also rewarding and very successful.

I chose this book because each lesson provides the adult with a script, you are told what to say, when to say it, where to point, when to point, everything. I am a poor teacher and found this method worked very well.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly Recommended!, 4 May 2005
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
We live in Switzerland and the schools here don't start to teach children to read until 1st Grade. My son had just turned 5 and was ready to read, so I decided that I would teach him. I just needed to find a good reading program. I checked www.amazon.co.uk and came up with this book which had so many excellent reviews, I thought I'd give it a try.
Six months later after completing the DISTAR Reading Program, my son has gone from just recognising the initial sounds of the letters to reading at a second grade level. I have watched him grow with the program, blossom and become 'a reader'. Now I can't stop him. He will pick up any book and start reading it. He wants to read words on posters, newpapers, flyers etc.
I can highly recommend this book for teaching beginners to read. It is split up into 100 lessons, each lesson being approximately 20 mins long with a step-by-step guide. It is recommended for 4 and 5-year-olds and children that have been in school, but have not yet learned to read. It is not meant for ¨poor readers¨.
Although there are already many great reviews on this book, I felt I had to add yet another one as this is truely, an excellent program!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Teaching Aid, 12 July 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
My child is 6 years old and is reading below 1st grade level. Her school uses the basic whole language approach. Even though she was learning, her progress was very slow. I noticed that her pronunciation of certain sounds was incorrect. Now after having completed the first 30 lessons of this book, she is more able to sound out words she is unsure of and is now reading Level 1 readers with less hesitation and more confidence. My daughter sometimes complained that the lessons were too boring and at those times it was hard to hold her attention. I would like to suggest adding more interesting stories and games to the next edition of this book. I would like to know if there are any similar books in the area of math.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best around, taught 4 year old and 6 year old to read, 21 July 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
Simply the best I've found - gives easy to follow, specific instructions on how to present and deliver the lessons. No guess work! Just enough is presented with each lesson to cover about 15 minutes of time, and the going is not too difficult for children (or parents) to manage. I bought the book for my 6 year old, who had become frustrated at school with "sight reading". She has done very well with the lessons, and perhaps of greater importance, she is eager for "her lesson" each evening. I have also taught my 4 year old, he has progressed at the same rate as the 6 year old. The book also gives instruction to the parents on how to teach and correct the learner.
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37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for little ones too!, 24 Sept. 2003
By 
bobbathejobba (furthest place in the UK from the beach) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
There are many glowing reviews for this book and deservedly so - but none have yet pointed out how this book can be used successfully with very young children....
Basically this book promotes teaches reading using little letters (as opposed to capitals) and phonics (the way the letters sound) instead of their names. This is THE method currently being promoted in British schools as part of the literacy hour and has much research backing it up as THE most effective way of teaching reading.
The book has 100 fully scripted lessons that can be used by ANYBODY to teach their child to read.
We started teaching our daughter to read using this book from age 2½ and by 3 she was already deciphering new words.
Each lesson has 7 or 8 parts, which deal with different aspects of the reading process (eg saying words slowly, saying them fast, rhyming and sound out letters). Simply do just 2 or 3 of these a day with your young child. For the young learner a kinaesthetic approach is essential - that is a very physical method - so swing them in your arms slowly when they say a word slowly and whizz them fast when they say the word fast. Act out the words they are saying. When they sound out a letter correctly then reward them with a big hooray or throw them in the air, etc. Hold their hand to draw the letters - having fun drawing them big, small, squiggly, anything that makes it like a game. Reinforce the concepts through the day by playing rhyming games or playing spot the sound games. You will be amazed by how much a little child can pick up - as long as it is FUN and seen to be a game (sitting down for a formal lesson just doesn't work at this age - believe me I tried!!!).
I have every confidence that you will have fun and be thrilled at how much children learn through play. It's also great for building up your relationship with your child.
Buy it! You will not regret it - even if you only use a little. What could be better than giving your child the gift of reading?
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, Easy-to-Use Phonics Program!, 13 July 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
We have used this book for 4 of our children so far, and plan on using it for the rest. I recommend it to new home educating families who are just starting out and want to get their child reading.
The book has a thorough explaination of how it is to be used, in the beginning of the book. Then, throughout the book, what the parent (teacher) says (your "script", as it were) is in red print. It is fun and sometimes nicely silly. We all really enjoyed it. Each lesson takes from 15 to 20 minutes to go through (just about right for a young one). Then there are a few "letter sounds" for the child to practice writing on her own paper or notebook. Your child will probably be like mine, in that he/she will be reading and perhaps writing short stories before he/she is even done with the book. There are suggestions at the end of the book for further recommended reading, or help if the child is still moving slowly.
This book is very easy to use and produces results, both in teaching your child to read, as well as in a closer relationship with your child. Save the "Big Guns" programs for those with learning disabilities.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book, 11 Sept. 2006
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
Our 5-year-old daughter is at school in France, but we want her to be able to read and write English as well as speak it, so it is up to us to teach her. I wanted some help with this, as I was using odd books, but didn't really have a structured course to follow. I bought this book 8 months ago, when my daughter was 4. I bought it because of the good reviews on Amazon. It has lived up to expectations. It is amazing how suddenly the whole process comes together. We are now on lesson 77 - we don't do a lesson everyday, just on the 3 school-free days a week. Our daughter's reading is impressive - I think she would be well ahead of her age group in England.

Instructions at beginning of book seem complicated at the start, but persevere with them as it is actually very easy once you start the programme.

Only other negative point is the 'american words', but it isn't difficult to explain this.

I highly recommended this book, so felt I should add a review too!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Succeeded when $300 of home-school curriculum didn't., 6 Jun. 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
When my husband and I decided to homeschool, we looked at a lot of different curriculums and found one that we thought was just the best thing on the face of the earth. It was $285 for about a year and a half worth of books. After four months of repetitive drills for over an hour each day, my son and I both hated school time.He just didn't see the point of all of those blends he had to repeat over and over. And with a two year old and a two month old I had trouble staying encouraged to do it. Then my friend introduced me to this book. Her daughter who is 1 year and 7 months younger than my son was on lesson 40 and doing wonderfully. I headed straight to the store. By lesson 13 (which was just day 4 for us because of the foundation that took 4 months to lay) when he read his first sentence he was totally hooked. FINALLY all those letters meant something. We usually did 2-3 lessons a day. We have completed the book and he is now reading wonderfully and loving it. Our other curriculum hasn't left the shelf since. This will be our phonics curriculum for teaching all of our children. It alone was worth $300.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Former Kindergarten teacher wishes she had this book!, 11 Jun. 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Teach Your Child to Read (Paperback)
I taught Kindergarten for three years before staying home with our first child. I wish that I had this book when teaching those eager five-year-olds! I am confident that all of my students would have been reading at a second grade level by the end of their Kindergarten year. I have been teaching our 3 1/2-year-old daughter how to read using this book and I am very impressed with the results. From teaching experience I can tell you that there isn't much better than this on the market. It is fun, easy for anyone to teach, and most of all, it works! Don't listen to those advocates of whole language reading--this curriculum uses phonics and teaches comprehension also, which is equally as important. This book will be all you need to turn your child into a successful reader. So, if your child is at a place where alphabet recognition and beginning phonics are boring, get this book! It is worth much more to me that the it costs to buy, and we will be using it to teach all of our children to read.
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Teach Your Child to Read by Engelman (Paperback - 1 Jun. 1986)
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