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Opinions on Journeys and Wonders reading series
Old 05-18-2015, 02:50 PM
 
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I would really appreciate any opinions on either reading series if you use them. We are looking at both and there are pros & cons to both as with any series. Tell me what you like and what you don't like.

Thanks!


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Journeys
Old 05-19-2015, 08:12 AM
 
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While this is my first year in 2nd grade after many years in 3rd, I've used the Texas Journeys for a couple of years. Not a great fan. The stories aren't bad, but we are an Accelerated Reading school, and I don't like the order of the stories for that. The very first story is something like 2.7, followed by a 3rd grade level story, till finally the 3rd story is 2.3! I also very much dislike the workbook organization. I would prefer that the pages be organized in a way so that the front and back match--phonics to phonics, comprehension to comprehension, etc. There are often an odd number of pages per story, so you can't tear out the last workbook page for one story because the backside is the first page for the next story!
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Journeys
Old 05-23-2015, 01:01 PM
 
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Our school has been using Journeys 2014 edtion for three years now. First, there is no perfect reading series. They all have great and not so great things. We do not use all the stories in the texts. We had to come up with themes so we grouped the stories together for each of the themes. Our themes are: Investigating Communities, Exploring Living and Non-living, Lessons We Learn (Folktales, Fairy Tales and Fables, Buzzing With Biographies and Featured Writers Cynthia Rylant. We love the leveled readers, vocabulary readers and Write in Readers features. We teach grammar thru Daily Language Do Nows. I teach a quick mini lesson each day that covers all the skills. We've taught phonics thru Journeys, but next year we are going back to Fundations. As I stated, there isn't a perfect reading series out there. We piloted two reading series before choosing Journeys. The other was Pearsons: Reading Streets which I am so glad we did not choose. I heard so many bad things about that series one being there were a lot of mistakes in the printing of the books. The only good thing about it was that we got to keep all the guided reading books which I use to supplement for silent reading etc. I purchased amazing Smart Board files from Journeys from Teachers pay Teachers for all the stories we use. This resource is amazing all skills are introduced thru short videos and interactive activities. The kids love when I use the Smart Board notebook for each story. Good luck let me know if you have any other questions. James
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Wonders Series
Old 06-01-2015, 04:28 PM
 
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I have used the Wonders series for 2 years now. We bought it thinking it would cover all of the areas with writing, phonics, grammar, and guided reading. We love the guided reading books. They have fiction and non-fiction books at 3 levels for your small groups. These are great. The phonics is terrible. One page a week. We don't really care for the writing either and do our own. There is loads of resources if you can find them. I also like that the have the different levels for weekly assessment. I like the spelling that goes with the series and it is also leveled, although I use a harder level for the beyond using the vocabulary words.
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Old 06-09-2015, 08:01 AM
 
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As previous PP commented, there is no perfect reading series. My school has Texas Journeys and we follow the phonics/grammar component in our curriculum. I've actually come to like it for the lower grades (not so much when I taught 4th). There are a lot of additional resources for centers that follow Journeys on Teachers Pay Teachers that my team purchased. I used many of the stories as a read aloud and followed the minilessons provided in the Comprehensive Language and Literacy Guide written by Fountas & Pinnell. I purchased paperback copies off of Amazon since it was awkward trying to read from the basal itself. I liked a lot of the tests that go with the series and would add some of my own questions. I love the guided reading and decodable books that are provided. I used these for both guided reading and partner reading. When I taught 4th, we primarily did novel studies and would supplement with the basal while studying different genres.


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