TOS Review: All About Reading
Some children need little to no reading instruction and just seem to teach themselves to read. Other children, when developmentally ready, only need a little instruction and they take off with reading. And yet other children struggle. Some struggle for a short period of time; maybe they just weren’t ready. Others have learning difficulties or even learning disorders.
I have four daughters. My oldest struggled.My next two readers basically taught themselves how to read. Supergirl, my developmentally youngest, has special needs and cognitive impairments. I often worried about whether she would ever be able to read. She requires a multi-sensory, multi-style approach to learning. We’ve been using All About Reading Level 1 from All About Learning Press. This has been an amazing and wonderful fit for her.
But before I get into how great this has been for her (for us really!) let me tell you a bit about the program. Written by Marie Rippel, All About Reading is a complete comprehensive program based on the Orton-Gillingham approach. It is multi-sensory. Lessons are mastery-based and customizable, so children can learn at their own pace. The program uses an “open and go” format which allows the teacher to relax and teach with little, it any, prep time.
The Level 1 Kit includes the Teacher’s Manual, The Student pack and all three volumes of readers.
The Deluxe Reading Interactive Reading Kit includes three components that the basic interactive kit does not: the Tote Bag, the Reading Review Box and the Star Stickers. You will need at least the Basic Interactive Kit and a some type of index card storage box if you do not purchase the Deluxe Reading Interactive Kit.
In addition you will need some basic craft supplies such as crayons, scissors and glue. It is highly recommended that you purchase a 2’x3’ magnetic white board. I’ve been using the back of a cookie sheet for now but I will be upgrading to a magnetic white board when we add more letter tiles and run out of space to work.
This program claims to have an “open and go” format. For the lessons this claim is true. I have little to no prep work at all when it comes to teaching the lessons. It does require some time investment before starting. If you want to use magnetic white board (or in my case cookie sheet) you’ll want to take the time BEFORE you start to put the magnets on the letter tiles. You’ll also want to tear apart the phonogram cards and word cards.
I love this program. I love that it has everything laid out for me. I really appreciate that Ms. Rippel has planned everything. I don’t have to decide which activities to do; I don’t have to decide which word cards to use and which ones I should be reviewing (and her indexed box makes storing so easy. Words to review in one section, words mastered in another and a third tab for words not yet taught).
Even though it is scripted and mastery based, I have room for flexibility and I can slow down a lesson. For example, for the first several lessons my daughter could easily complete an entire lesson in one sitting. Now, though, it is better if we break down many of the lessons into two sessions. I’m even considering take one day a week to just do review and practice fluency pages. Her pile of “words to review” has grown quite large. I appreciate that with All About Reading I can follow the suggestion to review the word cards at the beginning of every session but I can choose to just focus on re-reading fluency pages or re-reading some of the short stories.
We do not always color the activity sheets. Here Supergirl colors an activity sheet from a previous lesson while I do something else. She reads the words and it reinforces the past lesson.
I wanted to get a picture of our cookie sheet with our magnetic letter tiles so I put it in front of her and went to grab the camera. When I came back I found she had started pulling tiles down to make a word to read. I was so thrilled to see her spell dog and then read it!
Supergirl enjoys the stories in the readers. Here she reads about Kip the Pup.
I think it is important to note that a child must be ready to blend to be successful with this program. The timing of this program has been phenomenal for us. Supergirl knows her letter sounds, she’s blending sounds and she is ready to master fluency. If she was just starting to blend, I think we could have still used this program but we would have had to slow it down. That’s the beauty, I think, of All About Reading. I can go as fast or as slow as Supergirl needs. However, I think we would have been very frustrated if she was not at least able to grasp blending.
You may be thinking that All About Learning Press or All About Reading sounds familiar. That may be because Marie Rippel is the author of All About Spelling, another terrific program from All About Learning Press.
Because of the multi-sensory approach, I highly recommend this reading program.
Disclaimer: As a TOS Crew member, I received this product free of charge to review. This review is my honest opinion with, hopefully, enough detail as to why I liked or did not like a product so that my readers can make an informed decision. I received no compensation.
All About Learning Press generously provided me with the complete All About Reading Level 1 Kit and a a Deluxe Reading Interactive Kit.