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teachkgn. 04-16-2011 05:49 PM

Good Literacy Materials
My district has given us the opportunity to look at a wide range of literacy materials. Just wondering what other people use and if they like it or not. We currently are looking at Jolly Phonics and Literacy by Design kit put out by Rigby. I'm not real thrilled with the amount of "sit" time the Rigby kit needs. Anyone else out there using anything they really like and that's more appropriate for the age of our students?

BeeHappy 04-16-2011 09:55 PM

I use a wide variety ALONG w/district's
adopted curriculum resource, which is Reading Street for our reading groups M-Th and whole group comprehension lesson for the 1st 2 days of the week.
  • I want a much more rich variety of books for read alouds and comprehension lessons than one book for the whole week.
  • The first year I used it, I began the year using the scripted lessons for reading groups and then began to add other resources to make it more developmentally appropriate.
Some of the other resources and instructional strategies I use to teach reading can be found on my Shutterfly website on the Reading News page. You can access the password by requesting it through the Shutterfly site. I use these daily in my reading instruction in addition to my Reading Street texts:
  • Phonic Faces by EleMentory
  • Heidi Songs DVD's - Letters and Sight Words with music and movement
  • Whole Brain Teaching
  • SIOP and GLAD ELL Strategies
  • Kagan Structures
  • Nellie Edge poetry, songs, and Sing, Sign, & Read with me CD/video
  • Reading Naturally 1st grade word family/comprehension sheets
  • Other 1st grade word family books free online
For writing, our district has adopted Lucy Calkins. I have created a series of graphic organizers for the personal narratives so far that help break this material down to kinder levels, and am finding it makes it possible for nearly all of my kinders to write an amazing personal narrative. I plan to make graphic organizers for other genres for my kinders as time goes on, and may end up including them in a book that I am planning on writing. In addition, many here have mentioned Kid Writing as a great resource. I have it on order and can't wait until it arrives. It is available on Amazon. You'll see examples of my student's writing on my Writing News page which you'll access on my Shutterfly Site, along with other resources that I use, how I teach writing, etc.

I believe that multiple resources are important as not every resource is a complete package. Take what you like from this and that, leave off what you don't like, tweak and change things, get creative and you'll find the best success, in my opinion. By doing these things, my kids are literally FLYING in reading and writing this year [as well as math!].

I hope this helps! Please feel free to ask clarifying questions.

Bee Happy :)

jacque/Wa/K-1 04-16-2011 10:17 PM

Wright Group was wonderful---I have Benchmark Literacy now, not thrilled with it....

Kinderteach5 04-22-2011 03:50 PM

Jolly Phonics is Fun!
I have done Jolly Phonics for the past few years and all of my students love this! My district bought us the materials but it is not our phonics lesson it is more of supplemental material to have a kinesthetic way to help the kids learn their sounds. We use Saxon Phonics, which I think is good too.

I read the big book to introduce the sound, then I show them the picture card and we act out the sound. I also send home a page with all the jolly phonics pictures/sounds on it for them to do at home so the parents know what these silly hand motions are they are doing when they come home. I make a book to put in our library for them to practice if they want & I see my kids doing on their own.

It has really helped my low students! I like how when it gets to some of the tougher sounds like digraphs and double vowels it shows 1 dot under them so they see that they only make 1 sound. Just my opinion, but the pictures are cute and the books with the characters are fun. Having a hand motion to teach the sound instead of just showing them flashcards seems to really be effective!!

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