Steps to teach a child to read

  1. Teach single letter names and sounds (Memory Aids M-5, M-6)  
  2. Teach the digraphs (Memory Aid M-2)
  3. Teach the vowel rules (Memory Aids M-7)
  4. Teach the sounds two or more letters make in combination and the "First 500 High Frequency Words" (Memory Aids M-3, M-7, and M-1)
  5. Use Foundation Readers (M-15, M-16) and (Memory Aid M-1) to focus on the letter combinations as introduced in Step four and to help students memorize "The First 500 High Frequency Words"


Step 1

Teach single letter names and sounds

Ready to teach a child to read and need a fun way to teach the names of single letters and their sounds? Give a child glue, scissors, and construction paper and watch them turn letters into pictures and stories to learn phonics. This is a tactile, hands-on, memory aid, art activity and story based approach to make phonics fun and easy. Age 4 and up.


Step 2

Teach the digraphs

The brain has trouble storing information that it can not associate to a picture.  Mnemonics create associations that give the brain an organizational framework on which to hook new information.   Students use the pictorial marking system  mentally or on paper to sound out words.  The success of this approach is that the brain then has a cognitive storage system in place to store the new words


Step 3

Teach the vowel rules

Memory Aids for Vowel Rules

a    e   i    o   u

Vowels are the good guys and consonants are the bullies.  Vowels are sad when they are between or in front of the consonants in words like "cat" or "in".  Vowels are sad in the middle because the bullies  squeeze them. Vowels are sad in line in front of a bully because the bully can push them or step on their heels.   When vowels are sad they say their sad "short" sounds.  Vowels are happy when they are last in line behind a bully because the bully is looking the other way in little words like "me".  Vowels are also happy when they have a friend in words like "here" or "rain".  Vowels say their name called their "long" sound when they are happy.  Sound out these words using the vowel words.   


Step 4

Teach the sounds two or more letters make in combination and introduce the "First 500 High Frequency Words"

New information is easier to remember if it is linked to something that is already well established in the memory bank.  A word like "cat, "dog", strawberry, and "rhinoceros" is easier for a child to remember than a word like "the" because the brain usually has stored in its memory bank a picture of a dog, cat, etc., whereas on the other hand, the child cannot visualize a "the".  Educational Memory Aids uses a pictorial marking system and posters to make hard to learn words easy. 

High Frequency words are words seen most often in text.  "The" is the first word on the list   because "the" is the word used most frequently.  A majority of high frequency words are also Sight Words - words that cannot be sounded out phonetically

Memory aid marking symbols help students remember the sound of two or more letters, and the first "500 High Frequency Words" by sight. Can also be used as a diagnostic tool to uncover letter combinations needing focus to help struggling readers achieve reading success

Note:  Sometimes only a few letter combinations such as "ou" or "ar" can keep a child from being an excellent reader.


Step 5

Use Foundation Readers to teach letter combinations and reinforce The First 500 High Frequency Words

Unique "Reading Resources" Foundation Readers cover all fundamental reading components young children need in order to achieve reading success.  Use individual books as letter combinations are introduced or to help struggling readers learn the sounds diagnosed through M-1 to become successful readers.  Each book features a different letter combination highlighted throughout its text