A few months back, Reading Horizons reached out to me and asked if I’d like to review their program to help young children read. I had heard about the program and was very interested in trying it since Ethan is just now learning how to read.
What is Reading Horizons? The website says:
“Reading Horizons is written to tailor to children with any learning style – visual, auditory, kinesthetic, and tactile modalities.”
“The Discover Intensive Phonics method is a revolutionary, direct and systematic
approach to teaching phonics that enables students to improve reading skills and increase
reading grade levels quickly. It has been used in homes and schools across the country for
over three decades. Utilizing a multisensory, Orton-Gillingham approach, this
scientifically based reading program incorporates the tried and true teaching methods of
teaching the 42 sounds of the alphabet, five phonetic skills and two decoding skills.
These three combine to dramatically increase one’s ability to read English.”
The program blends all learning styles to help any child at no matter what stage of learning he or she is at. Since Ethan is just learning to read, I decided to start at the beginning, with the Core Framework.
Reading Horizons says that by simply teaching the core framework of the program’s methodology – the 42 Sounds of the Alphabet, 5 Phonetic Skills, and 2 Decoding Skills – students are empowered with skills that allow them to decode over 80% of the words in the English language.
First off, five letter sets are introduced:
Reading Horizons Review
We were given the Intensive Phonics Instructor Materials, perfect for Ethan’s age group (K-2). Ethan initially started by combining sounds, identifying letter groups and forming basic words. He’s also doing this at school so it paired well with what he’s currently learning.
The letters C and K are introduced in the fifth letter set, as it is emphasized that your child must first learn all of the vowel sounds first. Why? Because “C” is always followed by a, o, or u and “K” is always followed by a, e, or i.
What I liked about the program:
It’s very detailed and thorough. It covers all the phonics lessons and sight words that Ethan is learning. He felt accomplished and proud when he “got” a lesson. He seems to be more confident now that he’s reading more easily without me having to help on every word.
I also liked that everything I needed to help Ethan read was provided to me. Since I’m not a homeschooler and don’t have those resources (or even know where to find them), being given all the tools helped me help Ethan. Instructions were easy for me to understand, and I felt like I was given everything I needed to be successful. And there are a TON of online resources.
What I wasn’t thrilled about:
It was pretty time consuming, especially since Ethan goes to school and isn’t home schooled, nor does he have any learning difficulties. On top of our regular reading and his homework, Reading Horizons recommends using the program for 30 minutes to an hour 5 times a week. It got to the point that Ethan would run away when he saw me setting up. I think when the girls get ready to read, I’ll start using this with them before they enter kindergarten.
Overall I was so pleased with Reading Horizons and with Ethan’s success. I’m not sure if I can contribute it solely to Reading Horizons since he’s also learning it at school too, but I can tell you for sure that he’s sure made some major improvements since we started the program.
Reading Horizons Giveaway
I am so excited to say that Reading Horizons is offering to give one of my readers the same materials that I used with Ethan: Intensive Phonics Instructor Materials, a value of $299! What a fabulous win! Good luck!
I received the Intensive Phonics Instructor Materials from Reading Horizons to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.