Monday, July 8, 2019

Teach Your Child to Read: A Review of Learning Dynamics



Our four-year-old daughter has been wanting to read just like her older brother for quite a while. When I tried to help her learn the way her brother learned, she was not taking to it. But with Learning Dynamics, everything seemed to start clicking for her. While using the Learning Dynamics Reading Program three to five days a week, we have seen great progress in her reading.

What is the Learning Dynamics Reading Program? 


With the full program you will receive a lesson manual, 50+ full color books, a CD with 30+ songs that relate directly to the lessons, an activity book/student workbook, letter rewards, and flash cards. And one of the nice features is that only the student workbook is consumable, so you could use the entire program with more than one of your homeschooling children. The entire program arrives packaged in a beautiful box that sits very nicely on your bookshelf or table. (I really love the fact that everything goes back into the box so easily.)

Children will learn phonetic awareness and they will be able to apply exactly what they have learned through the reading of the new books in their library. "Learning Dynamics is the only program that provides books that contain only the material they have learned up to that point." 


Using the Learning Dynamics Reading Program 


Our daughter was very excited when the box arrived from Learning Dynamics. She took everything out and laid it all around her on the floor. (And her brother was very excited to look through all the materials, too.)

Even several weeks later, she is still excited to pull books out of the box to read them or look at the pictures in the stories. And she is very eager to work on the lessons each day.


Before we officially started, I read through the Lesson Manual and then punched out all the letter rewards and looked through the flash cards and books. Everything is very easily explained. Anyone can use Learning Dynamics Reading Program with their children for just 15 minutes a day, 3 days a week.

The flash cards and reward letters when we first opened the box.

Most weeks we used Learning Dynamics more than 3 times a week because our daughter was very eager and excited to work on her homeschooling with her very own workbook. The lessons are a good length for us. It doesn't take us very long to work through the material.

Through Learning Dynamics children will gain a firm foundation in phonics with a multi-sensory approach to learning how to read. With the songs children are able to memorize the alphabet and the sounds of the letters in a fun way. They can flip through the flash cards or their workbook.

There are also a variety of optional activities in the lesson manual—from finding items that start with the letter 'L' (and giving your child a lollipop to lick as a reward) to finding items that start with the letter 'D' and using the dinosaur detector. We did this activity with the dinosaur reward card instead of the dinosaur detector in the book because I didn't want to cut it out and lose the lesson information on the reverse side.

One of the fun optional activities. 


Lesson Set-Up 

Each lesson is set up in a very similar manner. It is recommended to read the entire lesson prior to starting it with your children. This will make it easier when teaching your child to read. Positive reinforcement is a big part of the lessons. It is important to have fun while teaching your child to read and be consistent in reading each day—even if it is only for a short time period.

At the beginning there is a reminder to read through the lesson, a pronunciation of the letter, what you need to prepare beforehand, and what letters you should review with your child. The lesson itself starts with an introduction and pronunciation of the letter using the blue letter card, a story featuring the letter, listening to the appropriate letter song, completion of the worksheet in the child's workbook, listening to the letter song a second time, a final check of the letter, sometimes an optional activity, and a blending activity.


How I Approached the Lessons 


We started each lesson with reviewing the letters using the flash cards and reward letters (our daughter did not want to keep these separate from the entire program so they stayed in a bag in the box when we weren't working on Learning Dynamics).  After reviewing the letters, we listened to the alphabet song that went through the sounds of each of the 26 letters.

We then varied how we approached the rest of the lesson. If our daughter was sitting on my lap to listen to the first song, we listened to the appropriate letter song next before moving onto any of the activities in the lesson manual. She loved pointing to the pictures of the objects mentioned in the song while singing along. (Her six-year-old brother would even join in singing sometimes.)

These are four of the things mentioned in the letter 'J' song.


After the songs, I would read through the story in the Lesson Manual, emphasizing the sounds of that lesson's letter while using the reward letter to tell the story. Most of the stories are silly: "Val and Vanessa are excited. They are going on a vacation in their van to the village in the valley to visit Aunt Vickie." And the story continues for the letter v to include vegetables, vacuum, violin, and vanilla.

After I have finished reading through the story and we have listened to the songs, our daughter then completes the page in the workbook. Sometimes the page focuses upon one letter and other times it reviews multiple letters.


A review page

I also added some activities to help our daughter because she was eager to practice what she was learning. We used our small white board to write out words from the early books and lesson manual. I also created alphabet stickers for her to spell out the new words in her notebook.




The lessons and the workbook pages include more complicated ideas like identifying vowels (short and long) and—in Lesson Manual 2—blends are worked upon, including r blends, s blends, l blends, and more.




Books 


I like that the books list the new words and the sight words in the beginning of each book. We can go over them together with our daughter to make sure she knows what words will be in the story. The images are bright and colorful and add to the narration of the story. The print is easy to read in clear letters. There are also questions at the end of the story to review reading comprehension.


Our Thoughts 


Our daughter loves her workbook and the books. She enjoys listening to and singing along with the songs. By lesson 6, she was singing along with the Alphabet Song.  She really likes reading the books. I asked her what her favorite things was: "Pam!" The books have been a big hit with her.

Our six-year-old son has read through most of the books (on his own). Our son really likes the alphabet songs as well as reading the books by himself.

I really like how everything is kept in one box. The size of the lesson manual, workbook, and books is a nice bonus. It makes it easy to store on our bookshelf when not in use. The use of the different colors for the books is also great to tell them apart based on level. I like that it comes with flash cards so I do not need to make my own.

If you are struggling with figuring out how to present a lesson, Learning Dynamics has several videos on their website and on YouTube that can help you as the homeschooling parent figure it all out to help your child learn to read.

Would you like to learn more about Learning Dynamics? 





Be sure to check out the other reviews from the Crew to see how they used the Learning Dynamics Reading Program in their homeschool to help their child learn to read.




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