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Perfect Reading and Beautiful Handwriting (Review)

Janice Campbell from Everyday Education sent me Perfect Reading & Beautiful Handwriting to review for you all!

What I received: Perfect Reading & Beautiful Handwriting Bundle -Print & eBook Bundle. You can also purchase on the print or only the eBook as well.

What is really unique about this program is it not only teaches your child how to read but write in the beautiful Italic handwriting. There's a total of 60 step-by-step phonic lessons!
I didn't realize that the typical printing taught to children have only six letters that are made with one stroke. Italic has twenty. The book teaches your child the strokes, then gives many practice pages (as your child is learning to read), at the end of the program (Chapter 6) it shows how to join the italic letters for cursive writing.

This is something I wish I had started all six of my kids with. Maybe they'd have beautiful handwriting as teenagers!
Perfect Reading and Beautiful Handwriting
The first chapter in Perfect Reading & Beautiful Handwriting provides information about reading, handwriting, and tips for teaching.

At the beginning of the book there is a suggested schedule for:
  •  Young students and/or learning challenges
  • School age students who is not yet reading
  • school age students who is already reading
The program includes 60 lesson the first lessons start with the alphabet. If you are using this with an older child you can skip this chapter for reading. The alphabet pages are great for older students to practice the italic font.
Perfect Reading and Beautiful Handwriting
You can see the full table of contents HERE and download a free sample lesson as well.

For younger children and struggling readers you will (not all on the same day):
  • Review (5 minutes, this is daily for all students young and old)
  • Introduce 
  • Trace
  • Sound Out
  • Read
  • Copy
  • Practice
For example if you have a child just beginning your schedule may look like this:
  • Monday: review, introduce, trace
  • Tuesday: review, sound out, read, copy
  • Wednesday: review, introduce, trace
  • Thursday: review, sound out, read, copy
  • Friday: review, read, practice
And again, this is a suggested schedule, so go slower if needed or speed up.  
Perfect Reading and Beautiful Handwriting
Many of the words in Perfect Reading & Beautiful Handwriting  are words that your child will be familiar with. Your child by age 5 or 6 has a speaking vocabulary of over twenty thousands words!

After the first chapter which had your child go over the alphabet, chapter two will start with short vowel.
Perfect Reading and Beautiful Handwriting
In Lesson 2 - Short a ~your child will come across words like cat, bat, hat, bag, (all familiar words) and also words like hack and tack. If your child doesn't know that 'c' and 'k' makes the hard /c/ sound, then simply tell him and move on. At first I was thinking, "Why is the ck sound in the first lessons?" but looking back on the early years when I was teaching phonics to my kiddos. When using programs that taught extensively on the "ck" sound, when to use it after the short vowel and such -my kids would be so confused. It was like a deer and headlights saying. Sometimes I think too much phonics can be not so good for our little ones. Like the book says, by age five or six our children 'know' so many words.

Now looking back, I wish I hadn't used some programs that did overkill phonics with my children. I wish I had the wisdom to just stop and trust myself. (My little tidbit of experience at no extra charge, hehe).
All that to say, don't stress that there is a word with the 'ck' sound at the beginning. Simply tell your child the sound and continue on with your lesson.

Throughout the book there's silly sentences which makes it more fun. With my Aspie (shows signs of Asperger's Syndrome but hasn't been tested) he liked these sentences. At first he didn't understand them and told me they don't make sense. I explained that they are silly sentences so he enjoys them now.

The majority of English words -about 87-97% sound the way they are spelled. There is the 10 that don't ~what we call the exception to the phonics "rules". Out of that 10% only 6% of the most commonly used words are the "exceptions" to the rules. These exception to the rules words like "said" are few in numbers and are covered in this program.

The "exception" words are in a box at the bottom of the page. For example Lesson 3 - Short e lessons, at the bottom of the page there is a 'box' that says, "Other words with shore e sound: said, says, been, again.
Some lessons will introduce multiple sounds like lesson 31. In this lesson your child will learn the -ew, wu, eau, eye sounds. With younger children you can split this up over a few days. Have them practice writing the words with the sound saying each sound as the child says the word in a separate composition book. The child can even circle the the sound that is being practiced.

Perfect Reading & Beautiful Handwriting explains how to pronounce the sounds for example in lesson 28 "When ea is like ee" it says, "In a lot of words when 'ea' is present, the letter 'a' has to be silent and let the letter 'e' say its name" then in lesson 30 'ea' comes up again with the other sounds it makes.

What I really appreciate about this program is the simplicity of use. It's all in one book. The original purchaser has permission to copy the blank lined pages too (only). I love that Janice Campbell has the bundle option available on her site because I like to hold a physical book. Having the eBook allows me to make additional copies.

 See my video of Perfect Reading & Beautiful Handwriting below!

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