There is no better pleasure than getting lost in a good book. S is just as much of a book-worm as I am, which pleases me no end, and little O is following closely behind with her love of ‘reading’ us a story at bedtime memorised from her favourite Maisy books.
When it came to teaching S to read I was at a complete loss. I was all fired up to start with the flash cards my own mother used with me, thinking learning by sight-reading was still the way to go, when her pre-school teacher stepped in and advised that the teaching of letters and sounds was something best left to their reception teacher with all their phonics training. Being a first timer in all this school and learning malarkey I nodded and went along with what she said like that true teachers pet I am!
After S being in school for a month or so I have the phonics down, and felt confident that when it came to little O starting to read we could get a head start on the phonics at home.
A few months back, just as O turned three, we were offered the Alphablocks reading programme to review for the blog. Perfect timing if you ask me. We had already started working on a few basic letter sounds thanks to the fridge magnets, so the next natural step was to make the learning a little more formal (but still fun with brightly coloured magazine and lots of stickers).
Alphablocks Reading Programme
The Alphablocks reading programme provides children with 15 Alphablocks reading programme magazines and Alphablocks themed resources, all designed by phonics experts, aimed at stimulating children to learn by using fun tools such as finger puppets, letter tiles, games and stickers, plus loads of gold stars to reward achievement.
The Alphablocks reading programme is sent out in 3 packages, allowing the scheme to progress and grow with your child as they develop their skills. We received our first pack in October and it was full of great ideas and teaching aids to help us hit the ground running.
As O turned three in November we though this was as good a time as any to start her reading journey, and we are so pleased with her progress so far. Thanks to the stories and tasks in the magazines she has been engaged right from the start, and with each section being bite sized we’ve been able to keep our learning in manageable chucks perfect for her attention span as it grows.
Pack two has just arrived and again is full of lots of exciting magazines and activities. I‘ll be posting an update on this pack once we have tackled a few of the tasks within.
What I have loved about the Alphablocks reading programme is how O sees it as a treat. She has always loved getting a magazine from the shop, so to her this is just the same. From a parent’s side I love how the magazines break down each task, so that even for those who may find phonics a little daunting, or parents who doubt their ability to teach anything academic to their children, there is a guide telling them clearly what to do and why. It’s like having the magazine hold your hand and help you both along your journey.
For £39.99 I was a little sceptical as to whether the package would be value for money, however now I have seen two out of the three packs, plus witnessed the progress little O has made already in her phonics, I am sold. I’ve been recommending it to all of the parents of pre-school aged children I know, and I personally think it’s a great birthday gift from godparents/grandparents looking for something a little more lasting and practical.
For further information you can follow Alphablocks is on Facebook and Twitter, and to find our more about the Alphablocks reading programme you can visit their website. I’ll keep you posted on the progress we continue to make, and let you know how we get on with package three in the summer.