Reading and Language Arts

See also:

All Language Arts Resources List
Books and Magazines
How can Parents Help with Learning Challenges?
Learning Online – Curriculum
Differentiated Materials and Programs – All Subject
Differentiated Reading and Language Arts Materials and Programs
Language Arts Charts and Lists

Pre-Reading and Reading Support

ABC’s of Beginning to Read by Penny Gardner
Article which lists out 10 ways to help your child develop skills for reading, based on Charlotte Mason’s work.

Advanceability Playful Sounds
Created by a speech and language pathologist, this relatively inexpensive set of flash cards is used to teach phonemes (sound parts) with a picture for each phoneme on the front, and instructions on the back of the card, along with an idea book for activities to strengthen phonemic awareness.

“Bee Ready to Read” – Hierarchy of Phonological Awareness Tasks
Pre-reading activities listed from easiest to hardest in these areas: Preparatory Activities, Rhyme Awareness Activities, Phoneme Awareness Activities, Segmenting Activities, Blending Activities, and Phoneme Manipulation Activities

Books for Beginning Readers by Library for the School of Education
Listed in categories of rhythm and rhyme, repetition, picture clues, sight vocabulary, context and sight vocabulary, and “utting it all together.”

Davis Young Learner Kit for Home Use

Fine Visual/Motor Activities for School Therapists
Long lists of commercial games, materials and toys, and activities to develop visual motor and fine motor skills for young children.

Game Yum – Games for Visual Perceptual Skills
List of several good websites to train, test, or develop visual perceptual skills.

I Can Teach My Child – 10 Steps to Teaching Your Child to Read
This is not a site to learn a reading program or technique but one which nicely outlines 10 important daily activities to do with your children so they have the pre-skills and mindset to begin to read.
Good list of hands-on activities used by many education therapists to build sight words and extend your child’s ability to recognize sight words.

Kids Front
Download free printable visual Exercise Book to “Spot the Difference” between two similar pictures; this helps children to begin to notice small details – a needed skill for reading print – and it can be a fun game!

I-SPY Books
These activities help children develop visual perceptual skills for reading as they scan the page looking for imbedded images.

Magic Eye 3D
View these 3D images by un-focusing your eyes (a good brain exercise for children perhaps 6 and up, recommended by vision therapists) to work the eye muscles. Or find books of these stereograms in the library, at the local bookstore or online.

Montessori for Everyone – 10 Ideas for Pre-Reading Activities
Good list of basic pre-reading activities that are commonly used by parents and teachers.

Pattern Blocks Kits
Purchase pattern blocks form your local educational toy store or online for building, pre-reading and pre-math activities.

Patti’s Kindergarten and 1st Grade Phonemic Awareness Activtities
Find ideas for teaching: Rhyming Word Activities, Syllable Segmentation, Beginning Sound Substitution, Teaching Sound Isolation and Phonemic Awareness.

Pre-Kinders Letter Formation Activities

Reading Rockets
Find resources for helping your child with reading at home (for any parent)

Reading Rockets – Series of Pre-Skills for Reading
Short Articles and Videos -see below:

Early Literacy Development – Dialogic Reading

Print Awareness

Phonemic Awareness

Speech Sounds and Assessment tip

Speech Sounds – Suggested Tips (games for phonological development)

Reading Rockets – Guides

For Parents:

Making Music: Literacy Tips for Parents

ABC’s of Teaching Reading

Reading Rockets TV Shows
Award-winning PBS television programs about reading and education. You can watch the shows when they are broadcast by your public television station, or watch online anytime — just click below on the link of the program you are interested in.

Reading Skills and Games
Click link above and Scroll down for list

Raising Kids who Love to Read pdf

Rhyming Chants, Jingles and Songs
Have fun and help your child learn rhyming and phonemic awareness skills to build pre-reading readiness.

Teaching our Children to Read, Write, and Spell – by Susan R. Johnson MD, FAAP
Article on Waldorf perspective for appropriate developmental readiness for reading, which encourages parents to prepare their children through activities which develop the pre-skills for reading, including movement, sensory, and proprioceptive activities.

Reading and Spelling

Check Out Textbook Reviews at: Educational Research Analysts 

A-Z Teacher Stuff
Has themed activities and other worksheet generator, but the one that I haven’t found on any other site is spelling list wordbox generator that makes word boxes to help teach those visual-spatial learners.

Offers an ‘alphabet’ of information and articles for parents and teachers about all aspects of reading, as well as free downloadable activity sheets,  links to resources and reading programs and more.

ABeCeDarian Reading Assessment – click below:

Audio Visual Resources

AVKO Spelling and Dyslexia Foundation
Non-profit organization for teachers & parents, provides free resources and learning programs for sale in the areas of reading, writing, spelling, and typing, including the popular Sequential Spelling Program which works on building small word parts and adding new parts each day to build longer words.

Sequential Spelling section

BestHomeschooling List
Links to sites on books, language arts references, reading, writing, as well as articles about how children learn through these activities.

Bibliomania Literature Study Guides
Written by Oxford and Cambridge University graduates, they offer introductions, synopses, summaries, discussions, commentaries, theme exploration, questions and essay writing guides, on a collection of classic literature for high school to college level students.

BOB Books
Short, small, easy books with 3-letter decodable words, each book working on a particular phonetic part.

Books for Beginning Readers
Basic list of beginning reader books, including ‘very beginning’ and ‘easy’ levels.

Child 1st Products
Find reading products for the beginning readers, or especially for the right-brained or atypical learner.  For example, their ‘”Snap Letters” and Snap-Words’ use imbedded images in the letter or word to help the child visualize the alphabet and sight words.

Cooperative Children’s Book Center Books for Children and Young Adults
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Click on bibliographies for suggested books

Creative Teaching Press – Dr. Maggie’s Readers
A series of inexpensive paperback phonetic readers, with each one introducing one or two new phonetic sounds/letter pairings in a fun story.  Also offers a read-along CD for some of the books, as well as books sold in sets or a “homeschool” pack of 24 readers.

Davis Symbol Mastery Kit
For children who need a tactile, manipulative and 3-D visual way to learn letters and words.

The Great Books Foundation
Offers information and book kits for K-12 guided reading book and discussion groups, as well as: info product ordering, homeschooling using junior Great Books programs, and ‘how-to’ info for parents and educators.

Explode the Code (at Kaleidoscope) (online course you can do at home)

Phonics workbooks

First School Years
Free printable worksheets for phonics and word study.

Flyleaf Publishing
Order nicely illustrated decodable books in the leveled reading series

Homeschool Literature
“Literature and stories about homeschoolers! A directory with reviews by homeschoolers, study guides, and ideas for further study.”

Hooked On Phonics
Home program with video lessons, workbook, reader and supplemental online activities.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

McMillan McGraw-Hill Textbooks
Textbook samples for K-5: 

Montessori Language Arts
Downloadable pdf with complete instructions on how to teach history of language, word study, mechanics, sentence analysis, and more, all with visual guides.

Mrs. Perkins Dolch Words
Find Dolch lists, worksheets, flashcards, and activities for over 300 most commonly used words for children’s books.

New Pages Young Authors Guide
Online site where children, teens, and young adults can find “literary magazines to read, places to publish their writing, and legitimate contests” through an alphabetical list of publications and a search-by-month for deadline for contests.

New York Times Learning Network – Education
Beyond the Book Report: Ways to Respond to Literature Using New York Times Models
By Shannon Doyne and Katherine Schulten
Offers over a dozen ways for students to learn about book reports as well as ways to create a report on a book or booklist, with such suggestions as creating a podcast in a talk-show style about the book, use photos of real places in novels and create a slideshow about the scenes or create maps that show locations of important parts of the book, and other activities that inspire creative responses.

Phono-Grafix / Reading Reflex
or see Phono – Graphix Book by Carmen McGuinness and Geoffrey McGuinness (at bookstores) or
Teach your child  to read with an easy, inexpensive phonemics-based program – all you need is in the book.

Pearson Textbooks for Reading: K-12

Prufrock Press – Language Arts (Gifted)
Find a selection of texts, workbooks, teaching materials, and other differentiated learning and language arts books for gifted children of all ages, with titles such as “Haunted House: Descriptive and Narrative Writing Exercises” and “A Sentence a Day : Short, Playful Proofreading Exercises to Help Students Avoid Tripping Up When They Write” and about 100 other titles.

Read Naturally 1-Minute Reader
Practice reading for fluency with this supplemental reading program which uses short stories and comprehension questions.

Reader Rabbit – Software
Popular computer software sold by age/grade for toddlers through 3rd grade (or for older children who need support) offering phonics-based program for teaching reading.

Scholastic Publishing
Find tons of paperback books for children and parents.  Choose from many categories, including:


Non-Fiction: “A True Book…”
There are over 2,000 books in this series – on everything, with titles like: Stegosaurus, Corn, Mexico, Speed Skating, Being a Governor, and just about anything!  These are good readers for those in K-5 grade, and older (especially good for those with reading challenges, autism, or readers who need photographs to help with context cues.)

Sing Books with Emily
Read her blog online and find a long alphabetized list of “singable” books – picture books which use images and rhyming text that can be sung by the reader, the child, or a group.  She offers images, remarks and the text (lyrics) for many books.  This is a good beginning reader activity to do together.

Zoo Phonics
Offers many products for a multisensory language arts program, using kinesthetic (touch) visual (zoo animal images with letters) movement (children act out) with auditory and speech (music and saying the sounds) to learn the alphabet and put phonemes together to learn to read.

Writing and Grammar

5 Finger Paragraph
Learn to write the 5 finger paragraph and the 5 finger essay using the writing low-cost toolkit or purchase other grade-level materials.  Based on colors and kinesthetic method to help students remember the abstract basic rules.

Barchowsky Fluent Handriters
Offers i-Pad app for beginning letter formation, “Beginners Handwriting” book (emphasizing rhythmic movement for gross motor learning) “Fluent Handwriting” with CDROM for all learners, and “Fix-it …Write” for older students and adults who need help with legibility and speed.  Beginning books teach a basic fluid print that naturally leads into cursive writing so students don’t need to “re-learn” how to write when they switch from print to cursive writing.

Brave Writers
Homestudy courses and curriculum, (but can also be a home-study course for children in other schooling situations) including The Writer’s Jungle, language arts programs and magazines, and online course.  Writer’s Jungle is geared toward getting emerging writers to trust their own voice more than learning punctuation.  This program is relatively inexpensive for what it offers; a full writing program for children and teens, which can alos be accessed  online or through a computer program.

Caught’ya! Grammar Books by Maupin House
Find out about this fun series for students from elementary to high school here and learn how to use this series where students view “a sentence or two of an ongoing, funny soap-opera plot that you put on the blackboard or overhead four or five times a week. Each sentence contains a vocabulary word and is laced with grammatical and mechanical errors”  that students work to re-write, using proof-reading symbols.

Draw Your World
Thematic book sets which offer young learners practice in reading, drawing, handwriting, and writing lessons.

Handwriting without Tears
Purchase online, through local educational toy store or resource center, or use it with an Occupational Therapy program.  This progressive learning system works on learning easy letters first and then moving on to similar letters with similar movements.  It is recommended by occupational therapists for children who have writing challenges but it’s a good way for any child to learn handwriting.

HWT Info for Parents
Find online tools, products, specialist locator list, and more

HWT Products

HWT Classroom/Home Downloads
Curriculum Overview, Letter Formation Charts and Teaching Guidelines by Grades

HWT Video Learning Library
View over 30 videos on handwriting and readiness topics

Keeping a Kids Diary by
Article with examples, a video on making your own diary, and ideas about how to get started.

Kids Learning is Fun – Types of Writing Genres Children Learn
Explains what a genre is, how it is taught and lists the genres generally taught in elementary school.

Michael Clay Thompson Language Arts Curriculum
Find information (see sample pages) and purchase these popular grammar, vocabulary, writing, and poetry programs, which use stories to explain concepts, as well as the writings of famous authors to teach language arts topics, in books like ‘Grammar Island,’ ‘Paragraph Town,’ and ‘Essay Voyage,’ for elementary through high school levels.

The Paragraph Book Series (Books 1-4)
Purchase any of the basic easy to follow workbooks to read to and work with your child or student, using step-by-step exercises for  paragraph writing skills.

Read Write Think
Resources for teachers and parents – printable graphic organizers, lesson plans, parent homework ‘how-to’ support for your child writing a book report, etc., online teaching interactives, projects. and other writing tools.

See lesson plans:

See all printouts: (graphic organizers, writing starters, informational sheets, and assessment tools)

Parent how-to help your child:

See online interactive games:

Structured Writing
Offers teacher and student workbook set for writers from middle school through high school, using color-coded formulas and a step-by- step approach to teach basic academic writing skills.  The formulas help the student set up different types of academic writing assignments while the color codes illuminate the different parts of each assignment.

Type to Learn (by Sunburst)
Popular with O.T.’s, purchase this low-cost typing program for those wanting to learn keyboarding or for those who have difficulty writing by hand.

Creative writing course for Grade 4 through High School, using workbooks.

Write at Home
Students and their parents can access lessons, assignments, and student work from their fee-based website at their convenience.

Write Guide
From their site:”Provides an Individualized Writing Course for homeschooled students in grades four through twelve. Students enrolled in the course work with their own private writing teacher on projects of their own choosing, at their own pace, every day, Monday through Friday. Teachers have Masters degrees, years of teaching experience, and are published writers.”

Write Source
Popular student books for writing styles, exercises, rules, and outlines for topic writing for each grade level.  Look for used copies if possible!

A Writer’s Notebook, Live Writing, & more
Easy to read writing books for children by Ralph Fletcher, as well as teacher curriculum and writing curriculum products.

Writing Strands
Created by an English teacher and homeschooling parent, this series of workbooks uses simple and fun exercises to daily build onto ideas in order to painlessly develop writing skills.