The Old Schoolhouse® Product & Curriculum Reviews

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Let's Get Ready For Kindergarten! Review by Dena Wood and Lisa Barthuly

By Linda Desimowich and Stacey Kannenberg
Cedar Valley Publishing
N6854 Cedar Valley Road
Fredonia, WI 53021

Let's Get Ready For Kindergarten! is a little book with a big punch. Don't let the small size mislead you. This book is packed with information and literally covers everything your child needs to know before Kindergarten. Skills covered include:

  • Early childhood skills
  • Letter recognition & alphabet sounds
  • Colors & shapes
  • Left & Right hands and finger names
  • Number recognition & counting
  • Skip counting
  • Recognizing money amounts
  • Opposites
  • Seasons
  • Rhymes
  • Positional words
  • Body parts & the five senses
  • Frequently used words (sight words)
  • Story order
  • Telling time
  • Calendar
  • Name/address & telephone usage

Each heavy-duty, laminated page introduces the child to various skills and allows them to practice them at varying levels of difficulty. For example, you are first directed to read through the upper case alphabet with your child, pointing out each letter. Next, you read through the lower case alphabet. Once your child has the basic alphabet down he is asked to name the letters as they are listed out of order as well as point out the letters in his name. Parent notes are also included such as, "Many children think L-M-N-O-P is one letter. Watch out!"

Intended to be used over a long period of time, you can easily skip from section to section as your child is ready. No need to work through it in order. In addition to being perfectly "child-sized" the book is laminated and perfect for use with dry erase markers as suggested on several of the pages. The style is bright and bold with just the right amount of information per page.

My four year old loves his "schoolbook" and rushes to get it out each morning. We spend 5-10 minutes reading through various sections. Often, during the day, he will ask to "work" in it with his dry erase markers. While I initially thought the $15 price tag a bit steep for a simple skills book, I've since changed my mind. This book has satisfactorily replaced several workbooks, covers all the necessary skills, and is very heavy duty. This is an ideal product!

-- Product Review by Dena Wood, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, March, 2006

Another Review

It's no wonder these books have received so many awards! Let's Get Ready for Kindergarten! and Let's Get Ready for First Grade! are simple yet thorough books for teaching our youngest learners the basics.

The 32-page kindergarten book is a dry-erase book geared for ages 2-6. It is also colorful to grab the attention of the child. Just some of the topics covered are sharing, taking turns, listening quietly, waiting patiently, recognizing your full name, dressing yourself, recognizing left and right, reciting the alphabet and recognizing all the letters, recognizing the basic colors and shapes, learning your address and phone number, and so much more! I love that the books are reusable too.

Let's Get Ready for First Grade! is based on the same premise, but it has more pages and is geared toward ages 5-8. Topics covered include writing your full name and phone number, knowing upper and lowercase letters, knowing colors and shapes, counting to 100, knowing numbers 1-30, recognizing patterns, counting by 5s and 10s to 100, recognizing money and its value, and more!

I love these books. They've packed all the basics for our little learners into one book for each grade, making it easy on us parents too! Though geared toward public schools, the books are perfect for homeschool families! A parent could easily use them as the foundation for a curriculum. Simply add Bible, Living Books, hands-on activities, and maybe worksheets or plain paper notebooks, and you're set! You can expand from there, depending on your family.

If you are looking for an all-inclusive "workbook" or "textbook" approach, these are not for you. Let's Get Ready for Kindergarten! and Let's Get Ready for First Grade! are fun for the children and make life easier on the parent/teacher! Thumbs up!

-- Product review by Lisa Barthuly, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, June 2007