The One Book That Saved Our Reading Curriculum

Homeschooling comes with many perks. For me, it’s an adventure! Every day I get to have quality time with my kids through school. It’s REWARDING!

But, there are days of frustration and anxiety, too.

My oldest son is gifted in the areas of math and science. He has a large vocabulary and is very thoughtful. Imagine my horror when my VERY bright young boy REFUSED TO READ.

Does this sound familiar to you?

I quickly found out that other homeschool parents were having the same experience.

In fact, teaching reading happens to be road block #1 when learning from home! So how do you teach reading?

The solution I’m sharing today came from a supportive family member.

“Go Back to The Old Ways of Teaching”

It dawned on me that I was trying WAY TOO HARD, so we paused our reading work for a few weeks and focused on math and science- subjects where my son excelled and his confidence grew.

Seeking Simplicity:

The Ordinary Parents Guide To Teaching Reading by Jessie Wise and Sara Bluffington.

I can’t recall how this book came to my attention, but there it was an old-school tool to get our reading back on track! 

I was skeptical at first.

Already, I had spent a bunch of money I hadn’t planned on, trying to spark an interest for reading in my son. But for $39, (far less than most other reading programs) I reluctantly ordered it.

To The Mom & Teacher:

I really wanted to do an article on a trendy, immersive, colorful reading program as we navigated  modern home school products and methods. Those didn’t work for us. It was The Ordinary Parent’s Guide that turned everything around!

Getting Started:

Thumbing through it the day it arrived- it was structured completely differently than any other resource I had used.

This book didn’t seem to be “special”, just DIFFERENT. The first chapters in the book are all about VOWELS.

Teaching the vowel sounds first was very different from the way I had been teaching reading- we learned the 26 letter sounds in order of the alphabet.

My son already knew all the letter sounds, he just couldn’t (or wouldn’t) sound out words.

We started on page 1 the next day. I filled out index cards according to the instructions in the book, and I tried my best to feign excitement for my kid- hoping it would be contagious!

The transformation that occurred in the following weeks was nothing short of MIRACULOUS! My son and I were reciting “The Vowel Poem” together in unison, and he was ENJOYING IT!

He memorized the whole poem in a very short time, and he began to CORRECTLY sound-out words the same week we received the book!

Results, Results, RESULTS!

Then, he started reading street signs from the car. Then, remote control buttons. Then, food labels… We were finally on our way!

For any parent struggling to teach reading, whether you home school, or you’re just trying to prepare your kids for public school, or your child needs extra help with reading- THIS IS THE BOOK.

For every other program that failed us- it turns out that the key to teaching reading or ANYTHING ELSE, is sometimes to try to find the old fashioned ways to teach!

After All The Frustration & Fear:

Hopefully these struggles as a mom and a teacher will be few. I am truly SO THANKFUL to have a family that supports my home school journey, and for the simple advice that led us to find this book!

My most sincere hope is that this will help you in your courageous effort to teach reading to your littles!

Please feel free to leave a question or comment below! If you give this book a try- I want to know ALL about it- every child has their own learning style!

This is what worked for us, but I would love your feedback on this, and other resources that helped YOU! And, don’t forget to subscribe– our home school journey is just beginning, and I will be sharing all of my most favorite tips and resources with you as we go in the Bootstrap letter! 

Sincerely Yours, Breezy