Horizons Kindergarten Phonics & Reading Review

You know when you have that surreal moment when your “baby” is no longer a preschooler. Although we homeschool by calendar year I decided we could transition into Kindergarten for our 5 year old a little earlier, and I was blessed with the opportunity to review the Horizons Kindergarten Phonics & Reading Set from Alpha Omega Publications.

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The Horizons Kindergarten Phonics & Reading Set includes four student workbooks (consumable), four teacher’s guides, four small booklets for reading, a wipe off tablet with dry erase marker and magnets, and an alphabet floor puzzle. I have been using this homeschool curriculum with our youngest son who is 5 years old 3-4 days per week. Each lesson generally consists of reading an Alphabet Poem and Story (located in the Teacher’s Guide) and two worksheets (front and back).

The worksheets consist of a variety of activities including learning letters by sound, recognizing upper case and lower case letters, following simple directions such as circling and underlining, writing letters, recognizing letter sounds at both the beginning and in the middle of words, writing letters, blending letters and sounds, and even creating drawings to complement the letter sound learned in that lesson.

Alpha Omega Publications Horizons Kindergarten Phonics and Reading

Something about which I was concerned is that our now Kindergartner has fine motor skills delays/challenges like our older two children, and, like our daughter, he doesn’t like to make mistakes. Although we practiced writing skills, it’s still fairly new to him and we’ve mostly practiced lines, curves, etc. to help develop his fine motor skills, but it’s still challenging to him. Like I do with most of what we’re learning, I let them learn and progress at their pace, and I am encouraging him to write the letters but not forcing it. It’s paying off because even if he doesn’t write the letters that day, he will randomly write the letter.

What I love about having a white board available is he can write the letters very large and really start to practice the letters in a way that it is easier for him. It does have the lines, which makes it great for practicing writing within the lines as well, which is great for new writers. I find it is easier for him to hold the marker versus holding a pencil.

Horizons Kindergarten Phonics and Reading

Each lesson takes 10-15 minutes, but I break it into two parts because young kids tend to have a short attention span – possibly even more so with him because of his special needs. We have done a full lesson all the way through without a break, and that went OK as well. I find he is really enjoying the lessons. He likes the illustrations and despite not always being able to write the letters, he enjoys circling and underlying and following along with the story.

Each story from the reading booklets supports the letters/sounds we were learning in that lesson. They are repetitive, which is really helpful in learning. I can see he is already recognizing short words like cat, cot, dog, etc. As I read, I move my finger along the words to help him follow along. We also read the Alphabet Poem and Story while we look at the corresponding pictures as well with each lesson.

The student workbooks have perforated pages, so they are easy to tear out. This is really helpful because we can tear out the pages so he can write with the solid table underneath the pages rather than the other pages which would have less resistance.

The Alphabet Floor Puzzle can be cut apart and used as the Alphabet Flow Chart, but the Alphabet Flow Chart can also be letter flashcards, which is something we already own, so I am using them as the Flow Chart. I am going to glue the Floor Puzzle to card stock, which is something I’m needing to do still. For now, we just open it up on the table or floor.

Horizons Phonics and Reading Floor Puzzle

The Teacher’s Guide is filled with helpful information not only about how to use the program and materials but information about illiteracy, phonemic awareness, and learning to read in general. It includes the Scope and Sequence of the program (each Student Workbook has a corresponding Teacher’s Guide). After the Scope and Sequence are the Lessons. Each lesson includes and Overview, Materials and Supplies needed for the lesson (which is great for preparing for the lesson in advance), Teaching Tips, Introduction to the Workbook Activities. The Workbook Activities are described in detail to make the lesson very easy to teach.

Overall, I think the Horizons Kindergarten Phonics & Reading Set is a great Kindergarten Phonics and Reading Curriculum. It includes everything needed to make teaching phonics & reading easy! With the great illustrations and rhyming stories, it is a fun and engaging curriculum for young kids.

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Alpha Omega Publications offers a variety of homeschool curriculum. Members of the Schoolhouse Review Crew reviewed curriculum from Pre-K – 2nd Grade. See what they thought by clicking on the banner below!

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  1. I think this is a fabulous program geared up to helping assist children in education. This is such an important factor in our society. Thanks for enlightening this great cause.

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