Finding just the right phonics program can be hard. Almost harder than it is to use it! Little Miss had the chance to try out Fun-Time Phonics! from The Critical Thinking Co. and boy did we have fun! Yes, I said fun!!
What It Is
Fun-Time Phonics! is a fun, easy to use and learn from phonics program. There are 100 activities in the 300+ pages. Each page is full of gorgeous colorful pictures that make the learning seem like a game instead of learning. And when you have a four year old who doesn’t want to sit still, fun is good!
Fun-Time Phonics! works with teaching the phonemes and by working on a mastery style of learning. The first 14 lessons work on teaching about the sounds of the words. Each different part, not just the beginning, but each part. After your child has mastered those first 14 lessons, you move on to alphabet, first the vowels, followed by the consonants. Finishing up the lessons, your child will be able to fluently read 3 letter words.
There are many different teaching suggestions on how to add the critical thinking into your phonics lessons. When using these techniques, you are able to add new vocabulary, learn multiple meanings, the action of modeling and the physical act of writing. Not to mention the motivation that we all share. There is also a very simple tip to help your child maintain their focus while working on their lessons.
Other than these tips, there is really no schedule on how to use the program, you will listen to your child and see when they are ready to move forward of if they need to stay for a while longer on the lesson.
How We Used This
Little Miss has been wanting her own “workbook”. When we got our Fun-Time Phonics! book, she was ready to start right away! I had to simply read the quick introduction and we were able to start the first lesson within minutes! This was great. I was able to use this program when she was ready without a ton of prep work.
Each day, when Little Miss was willing and ready to learn, or play, we would sit down and work on the lesson for that day. We made sure to stick with the lesson, sometimes repeating it until I knew for sure that Little Miss had mastered that lesson and skill. Most of the time she would catch on right away, but every once in a while she would need an extra day.
It didn’t take long before Little Miss was looking at words and sounds in a whole new way. She loved to pick out the rhymes she was hearing, and sound out the words she was hearing me say. I could see her mind working in a whole new way!
All in all, we would sit for about 10-20 minutes a day, 4-5 days a week. Each day would depend on if Little Miss was willing to be active in the learning (she is only 4 here). But each day was fun. She never got bored, which is a good thing when it comes to something like this!
What We Thought
We both loved this program. It was what we needed to work on introducing the concept of reading to Little Miss. She loved the pictures and would actually ask if she could “read” her book before bed while big brothers were doing their reading.
This was the perfect program for a 4 year old and it was the perfect with the length of lessons and style of pages. I honestly found nothing to change when we started using this!
Have you ever used a product from The Critical Thinking Company? Which one was it? What is your favorite if you have used more than one? I want to try some others, so I think I am going to head over and read the reviews of some of the other Crew families, will you join me?