Our Marvelous Monday series ends today, but you can view all the posts if you haven't caught up.
Phonics has been a fairly natural ebb and flow kind of subject in our home. I find it easy to point out sounds and letters just as we go about our daily life, saying something like, "Let's put on your red shirt. R-r-r-e-e-d-d. Do you hear that 'R'? It makes the Rrrrrrr sound." I point to letters in print or play rhyming games fairly naturally as we go about life.
For formal phonics, however, we use TATRAS. I wrote a wee bit about this program in my post on preschool and kindergarten materials. TATRAS has been a thorough program for us, so much so that I gave the phonics chart a permanent place on our schoolroom wall.
I refer to the chart often in the elementary years because my budding spellers need reminders of what consonant blends make which sounds, etc. And it seems as if I'm teaching someone to read around here every other year or so :) In fact, although I don't love teaching reading, I am looking forward to helping my daughters and daughters-in-law with their little ones as they begin to learn to read.
TATRAS begins with a little booklet called The Penny Primer, in which the first eight letters are learned and 43 words are decoded. It's exciting to get through that first booklet and be able to tell the child that they are reading!
When the entire TATRAS program has been completed, the child is a strong reader, has learned all the necessary phonograms to decode and read anything in the English language, and has had ample writing practice as well. I personally don't stress the writing aspect of TATRAS, and if I have a child who is particularly aprehensive about writing I ignore it altogether.
Check out Cheryl's final Marvelous Monday post here, and don't forget to visit her blog after this series. She is a wise woman and I count myself very blessed to have her in my life.