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great2beme great2beme is offline
Joined: Nov 2015
Posts: 7
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Joined: Nov 2015
Posts: 7
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Old 03-14-2016, 04:13 PM
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Our School adopted Wonders this year and I teach Kindergarten I am not sure if I am the right one to do a review though. Our school is full of over achieving immigrant children. They are very smart and other than being ESL, pretty much a monkey with a piece of chalk could teach these kids they are just that smart.

But here I go anyway. Wonders reading has a lot of resources. I really love the big books for each unit and that the students have the same thing in a student book. We sit and read these in large group and use the individual readers for small group.

We are a small school and they were willing to give us short term access to all the resources online to try out instead of just the samples so I could take a look at everything. I would ask if that is an option. I like wonders my only issue is there was not enough D level readers in the reading program so we had to print more. I also found that the end of the reading program was not exactly in line with F&P Level D So students would not quite be at the end of year goal for guided reading with the reading program alone. Though it would not be too much lower.

But that said they had reading group readers above D or end of KG level, as our old program did not and we had to print a lot of paper books.

I know it is going to sound strange but this is a good program for the lower and lower middle students who need to learn or reinforce their ABCs and the very advanced kids, but it seems to leave out those that are in the upper middle. The reading workbook goes very slow this is great for the kids who have not covered the ABCs but most of our kids have. We are in GA and have free pre-k for all students in the state. And the readers go up to a higher level than our last program that only went to D so those kids who just get it intuitively do great because they have more reading options for groups. Our schools goal is the students reading on G or H with a minimum of E to pass to 1st grade(I know this sounds high but I have never retained a student yet) This book does not seem to cover anything other than basic Phonics and to get above level D you need more. There are some silent E blending in units 9 and 10 but not much more. And we have found that some students need a little more to go above level D. A good teacher can easily make up for this and that is why we chose it. We do word families from the beginning of the year and cover the blends and digraphs outside the program. To put it simple, Like most teachers I have to provide a lot of out of the book material to be successful, but not as much in this book as our older program (treasures). I should note It is now March and we are Finishing UNIT 10 before the end of the month. Again our students tend to be on the high side and our kids would get bored to tears if we kept with the book schedule.

To put it all in simple term, I like the program. It is far better than what we had before because it has more to offer. But if your school has a tendency to be one of those power control schools (I worked for one of these several years ago)that dictates exactly what should be taught and are looking for an all in one package that will solve all your reading problems without good teachers, this will not be it. Teachers will still have to go off book and dig a little deeper if you want to see truly good reading results.
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