Blumenfeld's Alpha-Phonics

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  • Reviewed on Saturday, July 30, 2011
  • Grades Used: 1st & 2nd
  • Dates used: 2010
Anyone who already knows how to read can teach reading using Alpha-Phonics. It is easy to use and free of the professional jargon characteristic of so many reading instruction books.

Parents who wish to teach their children to read at home will find Alpha-Phonics particularly useful, as it does not have a classroom format which would need to be adapted for home-school use.

Alpha-Phonics requires almost no teacher preparation. The 128 lessons are self-explanatory. However, a teacher’s manual is provided offering practical suggestions for each lesson.

Alpha-Phonics is printed in large, clear calligraphy suitable for beginning readers. The lesson pages were carefully designed to eliminate distraction and to focus the pupil’s full attention on the work at hand.

Alpha-Phonics contains a section of pre-reading alphabet exercises to aid in letter recognition before beginning the reading program.

Alpha-Phonics produces significant results when used as little as ten minutes a day.

Alpha-Phonics uses a phonogram approach. One vowel is presented at a time and reading skills are developed by studying all the possible word families of that vowel before moving to the next vowel.

Alpha-Phonics provides extensive word lists and practice sentences to reinforce basic skills. As the pupil becomes more advanced, library books may be used for supplemental reading practice. While no separate readers are necessary, we do offer a set of readers which are closely coordinated to the material in the book itself.

The word lists and practice sentences in Alpha-Phonics can be used for spelling and handwriting practice, so separate spelling or handwriting programs are unnecessary. Suggestions are given for introducing cursive handwriting.


  • Reviewed on Wednesday, April 8, 2009
  • Grades Used: K
  • Dates used: 2008-9
I love Alphaphonics! It is so simple and straight-forward. Vanilla yes, but effective. Some programs are over the top, and take far too much time. With Alphaphonics you just need to read a page a day and add readers at the right level. I still can't believe how quick and easy it was to teach my daughter to read with this program!

Don't start Alphaphonics until your child is ready for it. Make sure they know all the letters and the initial sounds. It's like pulling teeth if you don't know the initial sounds. I had my daughter watch the letter factory video a bunch of times, and then she was ready to go. Also, when Alphaphonics gets too tough just put it aside for a few weeks, and continue with readers at your child's reading level. I found several times that my daughter needed some time to let the material settle in her brain. Then we would pick Alphaphonics back up and she would race through 5 or 6 pages a day.

We're just about done with Alphaphonics, and my almost 6yo dd is reading at a 3rd-4th grade reading level.

Rita J

  • Reviewed on Thursday, April 26, 2007
  • Grades Used: Kindergarten
  • Dates used: 2004-2005
This is the phonics program I used to teach my daughter to read. Several things attracted me to this program including the affordable price, the straightforward approach, and the ease of use. After researching it more, I decided to buy it and I am glad that I did. The things that attracted me to it are the reasons I recommend it today.

First of all, it is very affordable. I was and am unable to spend a lot of money on a curriculum. Therefore, price is a factor for me. For about thirty dollars, you have a phonics program. You can also use this for handwriting practice ,There is also a chart in the book showing the letters of the alphabet so that your child can look at that and copy from it onto plain handwriting paper. There's your handwriting curriculum if you are a frugal homeschooler. :)

It is a no nonsense program. There are no games, puzzles, or songs. There are also no pictures. The reason for this is that the child is to concentrate on the words. There are no pictures to distract or to give "clues" about what the words say. It begins with short vowels and uses a word family approach. For example, am, Sam,jam. Blending starts pretty quickly, so the child is reading real words early in the program.

It is easy to use in that you just open the book and start. Some lessons are short and some are quite long as the book goes on. If your child gets stuck, you can just take your time and spend as much time as you need on a lesson. You can also break lessons up into smaller sessions as needed. It is a very user friendly and adaptable program. Also, there are no worksheets at all and it is completely nonconsumable.

I highly recommed that you spend some time teaching the letter sounds before beginning this program. We just did this with flashcards.

If you want an affordable, effective, and easy to use learn to read program, check out Alpha Phonics.


Jenn Gunder

  • Reviewed on Thursday, August 19, 2004
  • Grades Used: preschool-k
  • Dates used: March '04-until August '04
True this is a good phonics program. Reading and no worksheets, intensive and one of the top out there. I researched this extensively before buying it which is why I am disappointed it doesn't work for my daughter. (She however is not disappointed in the least that I am not going to use it with her anymore.) I imagine that I could use it latter on when she is older, but feel it is better to get the intensive phonics program right for her now at this time (esp since she is writing like crazy!). (Researching Phonics Pathways at this time). She liked the pre-reading activities with the alphabet. She liked the first handful of lessons. Somewhere before hitting lesson 14 (where we seem to be stuck), I could tell that she was bored beyond bored. I tried writing her lesson on her chalkboard, giving her stuff (like stickers) to make a completed picture by the end of our session. I have spent too much time on trying to make it work, so I am going on to something else. I still highly recommend Alpha-Phonics, but I also wanted to say, Hey, if it didn't work for your child, then find something that does; you are not alone. One more important fact about Alpha-Phonics: if you know an adult in your life who cannot read, this would be a worthwhile gift for them.