A blending victory? Yes, maybe the veteran homeschool moms can relate.  But we had the blending victory this week, only the 5th week of kindergarten, only the 3rd day of teaching blends.  THAT is victory!  So thankful that it went this quickly and smoothly, because my expectations for this dear bubbly child were quite low for this year.  Her hands and feet and mouth usually seem to move the fastest on her!  Which makes her a great worker and helper, but she’s not always sure what you asked her to do in the first place.

Well, when it comes to blends, one child learns his letters, the sounds of each letter and then…. a screeching halt.

It goes a little like this : “What does t..a… say?”

“tuh….ah…”

“Ok, can you say them together?”

“tuh…ah…”

“ok, but together they say tah,  tuh…ah…tah, tuh…ah…tah.  Ok, try this one. what does t..o.. say?”

“tuh…oh…”

“ok, what do they say together?”

And the struggle continues for days, weeks, and suddenly, suddenly, that light bulb we all talk of goes on.  Yes, it is suddenly just there.  tuh oh becomes toh.

It’s the blending victory! From this point on,  every sound, every special sound you teach, easily flows into new blends and new words and soon they are reading like champions.

I have definitely decided that the A Beka phonics curriculum is the curriculum for our family. The children have all learned to read so well and quickly too!  They have all been well on their way by the end of Kindergarten.

Yes, I know  there are studies that they shouldn’t read, or it doesn’t matter if they read by the end of Kindergarten. But when there are ten… and there are ten…. reading is the first step to being able to do at least some school work independently.  And doing some or most school work independently at times, is a necessity.

The A Beka curriculum has different options.  In our house, dollar signs speak louder than almost anything when deciding curriculums. We have had some extremely tight times where there was virtually no money to spend at all on books.  A Beka is by no means the cheapest curriculum, especially if you price out their video curriculum, but I will explain how we do it very cheaply.

For Kindergarten, we have the Blend and Words Ladder book and the little set of readers.  These are reused for all the children.  Then, all I buy is the letters and sounds workbook for each child.  That’s really it!  I can at times find those workbooks for sale on facebook groups for an even greater discount, so I always keep my eye out for them. Because after all, there are always some babies, toddlers, or preschoolers who will need them sooner or later.

From the letters and sounds workbook, I was able to figure out what each lesson should teach, as the lesson numbers are on the bottom of the pages.  Then I made up each of those lessons myself, using hands-on-materials, printables, and youtube videos. Voila, a reusable curriculum that I can now tweek to match each child – the visual, the audible, and the hands-on learner!  A little work pays off when money is tight.

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