The Reading Lesson

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  • Reviewed on Sunday, February 13, 2011
  • Grades Used: K
  • Dates used: August 2010-December 2010
This curriculum did not work for my daughter.
I personally did not like or understand this approach to phonics. My daughter quickly became bore with the CD-rom games and the book.
The book is plain black and white. There is very little activity in the actual book. By Christmas, there were tears every time I pulled out this book. The only reason we used that book for so long is that I hated the idea of spending so much for a curriculum and not using it but if it's not working then it's not worth using. We took a few small breaks from The Reading Lesson. I tried to supplement with a Sight Word Workbook, which was more fun for her.
In January, we switched to MCP Phonics and what a difference!
Between using the Sight Word workbook and the MCP workbooks, she's finally enjoying phonics and has started reading!

All kids are different and The Reading Lesson just was not going to work with my child.

I will be giving it away at our end of year homeschool group party.


  • Reviewed on Saturday, April 17, 2010
  • Grades Used: 1st
  • Dates used: 2009-2010
We love The Reading Lesson! My DS is 6 years old and his older sister is a reading fiend. Consequently, he has shown extreme reluctance toward learning to read (fear of not being able to read as well?) We used Reader Rabbit software and the Starfall website to get him going, as well as pre-K readers, but with limited success and a lot of effort (i.e., much moaning and groaning). The Bob Books series were wonderful and seemed to spark his interest, but then he stalled. The Reading Lesson has changed everything! My son actually looks FORWARD to the lessons! I also incorporated the use of a timer so he can see that there will be an end in a set amount of time. The Reading Lesson is ideally suited for short chunks of time with maximum positive reinforcement.

The pages are very "clean", simple, and logically organized. Each lesson begins with a few letter sounds or letter combinations. Then some simple words, then short phrases, and finally, limited-length simple stories that incorporate the words/phrases. The words and phrases have appropriate guides so the reader can learn how to sound out the words. The lesson concludes with a short list of review words so that the reader can begin "sight words".

There are twenty lessons that increase in length as the reader progresses through the book. We are currently at lesson eleven and it takes us two or three days to complete each lesson, spending about 15-20 minutes per day. (This is the perfect length of time for my DS limited attention span!) The lessons effectively combine sounding out words and learning sight words.

This book does not contain endless cumbersome instructions for the teacher/parent (thank goodness!) Each lesson has one page or less containing a BRIEF overview of the chapter. That's it!.

I cannot say enough about how wonderful this program/book is. We have seen truly remarkable results in a very short time. The best part is that our son is now developing a love for reading!


  • Reviewed on Saturday, April 10, 2010
  • Grades Used: K
  • Dates used: 2010
I have tried a few reading programs and finally found one I like -- The Reading Lesson! I own Phonics Pathways and while it is a good program, my boys were constantly overwhelmed by ALL the words on each page: "I have to read ALL of THAT?"

The Reading Lesson is much simpler, easy to follow and the pages are clean and not overwhelming for kids. I am going through the book with my 4yo whenever he asks to do a few pages and he is loving it. He loves the simple drawings and thinks the little stories are funny.

I don't necessarily always agree with the order in which some of the sounds are taught (for example, "ea" is taught pretty early, I think even before all the letters have been introduced), but on the other hand my son isn't having any problems with it and knew all his letter sounds coming into it so it hasn't been an issue.

I am happy to have found something I like!


  • Reviewed on Saturday, October 10, 2009
  • Grades Used: K
  • Dates used: 2009
I have been working on phonics with my 5 year old son when I heard someone mention The Reading Lesson. I looked at their website and printed off the first lesson free and did it with my son before church. He read words for the first time and I could see it "click" in his mind. I knew I had to order the book. I bought my book at Timberdoodle for about 25 dollars with shipping. We are using this book in conjunction with Christian Light's Learning To Read curriculum. (So he's getting the handwriting and thinking skills.) I only purchased the book and I have my son go to and do the letters he just learned from the lesson.
I have just started this book but my son is already reading from it. I have used other similar books with previous children and this one is so much simpler and easier to use. I like the light, sweet looking characters drawn in the book as well.