Sunday, March 23, 2014

Weekly Resource - Learning Literature Through Reading

Barefoot Ragamuffin Curriculum now has a reading program to go with her literature program.  It is based on Spalding methods and she clearly outlines how to teach spelling and reading step by step.  She uses the public domain Elson readers which are included in program so there are no additional readers to purchase. The spelling words match with the readers.

Each level has the following sections:

Section 1 - includes a list of all the phonograms and flashcards to help you practice them.
Section 2 - the "spelling word" lists, these are marked in a way similar to Spell to Write and Read, the Logic of English, etc.  (although she does not include sentences for examples).
Section 3 - the Elson readers.  Level 1 uses the Elson Primer, the syllables are separated and the multi-letter phonograms are underlined to help students see how they work together.  Level 2 uses the Elson Book 1, words are still separated into syllables.  Level 3 uses Elson Book 2 and it reads like a normal text.  

Here is an overview of the levels:

Level 1 - starts before you begin reading and you practice 1-A through 1-T (with ten words in each section). After these introductory lessons, the lists work together with the reading passages and are numbered 2 through 29 (again ten words in each section).
Level 2 - lessons 30 through 75 (ten words in each section)
Level 3 - lesson 76 though 127 (fifteen words in each section)

After trying SWR with my son and not getting anywhere - he could do it with help but wasn't retaining anything - I gave it a rest.  This week we picked it back up at the beginning using the lists here and he is doing great.  I don't plan to do the readers with him because he is beyond them (at this point) but spelling is a struggle for him.  I will teach my younger sons using the program as she outlines it.  She does provide a workbook and at least in level one it has some exercises that look like many intro reading programs - circle the picture that starts with the letter sound you are learning, etc.  My middle son finds this easy and fun - the graphics are simple and direct (she even includes a key to what each picture is so that there is no confusion - is that a cup or a jar?)  The Spelling Journal for students to record their words by phonogram is available for free on her website.

She now has free samples for both the reading and literature programs. It is a great way to see her approach and the scope of what is covered in each level.

She also has created a great free list of reading recommendations and plans for covering these stories for preschoolers and kindergarten children.  There are a few suggestions in there that I have not seen before and some that I read with my older son that I should bring out again for my middle one.

Finally, if you are trying to incorporate art study but haven't figured out how to pull the pictures together and keep it moving you might benefit from her free art collections (level 1/2 and 3).  For each artist there are 6 works and she includes both color and black and white options.  These artists are integrated into the Learning Language Through Literature program.

She has also made Charlotte Mason's Geographical Readers, level 1 and 2, available for free. In addition she has put together free reading lists by geographical location - so there is a list of books that talk about Japan, etc.

I truly appreciate the time and care she has put into this curriculum and am glad that I now have a full language arts program - reading and literature!

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