Reading, Speaking

The Canadian Elocutionist

THE CANADIAN ELOCUTIONIST by Anna K. Howard (PDF ebook)

This is one of the all-time classic guides to the principles, rules, illustrations and exercises to make good readers and easy, graceful and correct speakers, written in 1885, but with much value and application in teaching speech & elocution even today.

From the introduction:

There is no question of the importance of the study of Elocution as part of a good education. Almost everyone is liable to be called upon, perhaps at a few minutes notice, to explain his views and give his opinions on subjects of various degrees of importance, and to do so with effect ease in speaking is most requisite. Ease implies knowledge, and address in speaking is highly ornamental as well as useful even in private life.

To download this PDF ebook, RIGHT CLICK HERE and “save link” to your computer. Mac users, press the “control” key and click to save to your mac.

Reading

Teach Your Monster to Read

Teach Your Monster to Read is an award-winning series of games – which incorporate loads of family friendly cartoon monsters – that help children learn to read.

The game takes children on a magical journey, meeting colorful characters along the way and collecting rewards. As they progress, players rehearse a range of essential reading skills; matching letters to sounds, blending, segmenting, tricky words and reading full sentences. The games are for children in the first stages of learning to read, or for older children who need a bit more practice.

Teach Your Monster to Read is funded by the Usborne Foundation, a charity set up to support initiatives to develop early literacy. Play for free on the website or download the app. Registration is required.

CLICK HERE to go to the website!

Reading

You Can Read!

1plus1plus1equals1.com is a terrific homeschooling resource blog and site, offering dozens of downloadable resources for younger students. Today we are featuring their neat sight-reading program, You Can Read!

From the website:

You Can Read! is a simple sight word program I developed with younger readers in mind.  Children learn to read at different ages and some show the reading readiness signs at much younger ages than others.  These children are ready to learn words and reading skills, they just aren’t ready for complex worksheets and activities often available to children who are a bit older when they are learning.  I created this program for children who are showing reading readiness signs at a younger age, approximately ages 3-5.  Older children can use these printables and activities also, they were just created with a younger reader in mind!

Note: The printable sets may be freely downloaded from the following pages, or you can download them all in one bundle for a fee:

Printable PDF sets 1-5 are available HERE

Printable PDF sets 6 – 10 are available HERE

You can also check out the many other resources available at 1plus1plus1equals1.com by clicking items of interest on the right hand side green sidebar on the site.

Arts & Crafts, Language Arts, Literature, Nature Studies, Reading

A Beatrix Potter Treasury

Today we feature a wonderful treasure chest of books, audios, videos and lessons about the stories of Beatrix Potter. Her classic artwork and stories are utterly delightful and should be known by every child. What better stories than these to share with your littles?

CLICK HERE to read almost all Beatrix Potter’s original picture books online or download them in kindle and mobi format at Project Gutenberg.

CLICK HERE to listen to almost all Beatrix Potter’s books online or to download them in mp3 format or to iTunes. There are three massive collections on this Librivox page, and you’ll just have to pick and choose which narrators you enjoy best. You can follow along the readings using the picture books from the Project Gutenberg link above.

CLICK HERE to go to a youtube page which offers up a couple dozen Beatrix Potter stories and related videos, including all the episodes of “The World of Peter Rabbit and His Friends”. (As always with youtube, parental oversight is recommended.)

Resources from PeterRabbit.com:  CLICK HERE to go to the download page — and don’t miss the 39 page PDF of Beatrix Potter Teaching Resources!

Phonics, Reading

Parker Phonics

Author and educator Stephen Parker has written three books on teaching your child to read using his “Synthetic Phonics” system, and has made all three freely available on his website in PDF ebook format. Here’s what he has to say about his background and the techniques he uses to teach children to read:

I’m a life-long teacher of mathematics, computer science, and reading. After teaching my own 3 children to read by their third birthdays, I became interested in reading instruction in general. What I discovered in many schools baffled me: a method called Whole Language (since discredited) and now, in its place, Balanced Literacy.

There is no “balance” in Balanced Literacy. Essentially, it’s Whole Language with some ineffective phonics added in after the child starts “reading” based on memorized sight words. Balanced Literacy will not alter the scandalous fact that 2 out of 3 of our children never become proficient readers. 

A word can become meaningless when people start using it to indicate anything they want. This has happened to the word “phonics” in some educational circles where one hears talk of “analytic” phonics, “analogy” phonics, “embedded” phonics, and “onset-and-rime” phonics. 

None of the above are methods for teaching reading. They all rely heavily upon memorization of sight words and on guessing strategies. Genuine phonics, that is to say, synthetic phonics, is the only type of phonics that functions as a stand-alone method for teaching both reading and spelling.

Synthetic phonics uses neither sight words nor guessing strategies. It is employed right at the start of reading instruction – and the child is not expected to memorize any whole words. Instead, the child is taught, explicitly, to correlate individual sounds with individual letters. 

As soon as 5 – 8 such letter/sound correspondences are mastered, the child can begin authentic reading, that is, taking an unknown word and blending the sounds of its individual letters into a recognizable pronunciation – a process called decoding. 

It’s the only way to teach reading in a manner that respects the reasoning ability of the child. Children, like adults, need to understand what they’re being asked to do, especially if the task requires significant effort over an extended period of time. 

CLICK HERE to go to the download page!

Audio, Literature, Reading

Dozens of Public Domain AUDIOBOOKS for Ambleside Online/ Charlotte Mason Education

These pages show all the Ambleside Online Booklist books that have been recorded as audiobooks by Librivox, with links to all their respective download pages. These are unabridged audio book readings, done by volunteer readers, so their quality varies but is mostly quite good. Only the public domain titles from their list are included here… Hundreds of audios, from grades 1 – 8. This is a wonderful index & collection, even if you aren’t doing Ambleside Online or Charlotte Mason-style learning.

Links to Audiobooks for Grades 1-4

Links to Audiobooks for Grades 5-8

Reading

Reading Challenge Printable

Jennifer Flanders at flandersfamily.info created this fun and flexible “Reading Challenge” printable. Here’s what she says about it:

“I love reading. I love making lists. I love challenging myself (and my children) to reach new goals. And I love pretty vintage artwork. So this summer, I decided to combine all those likes and create a Reading Challenge that can be easily adapted for any age: You should be able to find many of these titles at your local library, but if you are given to re-reading your favorites as often as we are, you may want to add a few to your own collection.”

This is a fun way to get your children to read a wide variety of books in categories you might not otherwise think of.

CLICK HERE to go to the download page!

Homeschool Helps, Reading

Eye Can Learn

The purpose of Eye Can Learn is to provide parents with fun eye exercises to enhance their children’s visual processing skills for better academic performance and improved attention. If you know a child who struggles, the underlying cause may be vision – even if the child has 20/20 eyesight. Children also need to be able to track a line of print, coordinate they eyes for single vision, make fast focusing shifts, and accurately interpret what they see.

The site has several games and activities to help with tracking, perception, visual discrimination, focusing and more. This is a terrific resource for any child having issues with reading and/or visual perception. Be sure to read the Getting Started page before diving into the fun and very helpful activities.

CLICK HERE to go to the website!