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Clayphonics Review by Teri Lucas

Reading is for Everyone
By: Barbara Brogan

In just a few minutes each day your child can learn to read with Clayphonics. Written by a primary school teacher, who also taught adults English as a second language, it supports the 3 main approaches to reading: phonics, sight words, and reading for meaning. These are offered simultaneously to the student throughout the program. Each letter is presented through story, a colorful clay picture (hence the name), sound, and motion. The stories are inter-related to a main theme so that the entire program reads like a wonderful picture book.

Students are shown the picture as the story is read. Next the teacher can either introduce the letter name with initial sound or initial sound then letter name (whichever method is preferred). The simple hand action is done when giving the letter sound making the learning auditory, visual, and tactile. Once several letters are introduced they can be combined to make the reader's first words. Clayphonics cards will be available for purchase separately in the future, however, any alphabet cards or magnetic letters are suitable for this purpose. Suggestions are given as to the teaching order of letter-sounds to maximize word lists for success. In a few days, your child is beginning to sound out words and read. Although no list of specific list of sight words is given, an overview of why and how to teach them is included.

Clayphonics stories introduce the short vowel sounds. When these have become easy to read, it is recommended that you introduce the silent "e" and long vowel sounds. A simple, but effective method is highlighted for teaching further combination sounds. A special emphasis on mnemonics in the Clayphonics method aids even struggling older readers in mastering the basics.

Clayphonics is a concise, simple and effective method for teaching reading. Because it is so easy to use, involves multiple senses, and a minimal amount of time and preparation, I feel that it will appeal to both parent and student, and it is a real bargain as well. This is a non-consumable curriculum.

-- Product Review by: Teri Lucas, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine