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Phonics for Homeschoolers

Education Expert Advice from Barbara Callaghan

Q: Hello, we are a home school family and we have decided to try a new program so that my son can homeschool three days and go to a school for homeschoolers two days. The reason for my message is to get some input on their language arts program. He will be a 7th grader. The program is called The Writing Road to Reading: Teaching Phonetics.Is this different from the phonics program taught by many public and homeschools?

A: The Writing Road to Reading uses the Spaulding Method and is an older reading program that stresses phonics. I do not know of anyone using it with 7th graders. I sometimes hear reference to it but know of no school or homeschoolers who are using it. I know it more as a reference when teachers are searching through their old materials looking for another way to present information.

If your child is going to be in a school part of every week, it is important to be consistent in his reading instruction. I would investigate the reading program quite thoroughly. Determine what skills are being emphasized and what needs your son has. You will need to select a school that supports what you are comfortable teaching and meets the needs of your son.

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After teaching in California for nearly ten years, Barbara Callaghan moved to New Hampshire in 1985 and became a principal. After 10 years as a principal, she returned to teaching, her first love and true vocation.


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