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Curriculum | 4 Minutes

Two Ways to Learn Phonics

Lexi Detweiler Written by Lexi Detweiler
Two Ways to Learn Phonics

Learning to read is one of the most foundational skills a child learns early in their education. It can be a momentous task for parents. That’s why we’ve developed the Phonics Museum, aimed at children in K-1st grade. The Phonics Museum is a comprehensive curriculum that incorporates auditory, visual, and tactile learning. It is available as a home study kit or as an app.

Both options are intended to be full-year reading courses. With the home study kit, you may purchase additional workbooks and primers for additional students. With the app, you simply add a new user. The app will track and save each child’s progress, and you can use it on multiple devices. While the app is intended to be stand alone, many parents use it to supplement the home study kit. Let’s take a look at some of the differences and similarities between the two to see which best fits your homeschooling needs.

In both options, your child will be transported into a museum world where they will help William, a young boy, and Percival, a talking suit of armor, discover new phonetic sounds in the artwork. The home study kit includes fine art flash cards for each phonetic sound, games, music, worksheets, great stories, art projects, and much more!

You’ll find the same artwork, stories, and music in the app, but the worksheets have been developed into fun games, which are spread throughout each lesson. Your child will shoot arrows at targets, play a harpsichord or beat on African drums. The games cover skills such as sound and letter identification, and writing. You won’t need any extra equipment for the app, all writing and tapping are done with a finger.

The home study kit requires the parent to be the instructor, while the app has instructional videos built in. But don’t forget about the lesson plans! Teaching phonics will be a breeze with our daily lesson plans as well as detailed teacher’s manual. The manual is easy to use and offers tips for teaching along the way. The video lessons in the app are taught by a live teacher, either Miss Biddle or Miss Gabby. With a live teacher, children are able to watch how their mouths form the letters, something that cannot be recreated with cartoons. The teachers interact with animated characters from the museum, like Percival the suit of armor, Gus the sarcophagus and Rafiki, the African mask.

At Veritas, we believe that memorization is a powerful tool we can use for teaching young children. The phonics songs are the same in both kit and app, except that in the app they are engaging music videos. They’re so catchy, you might just find yourself humming along!

And finally, what would a reading course be without books? Children will be ready to read their first book after only a few weeks of starting the course. Though simple, the primers are written so that the child can read the entire book on their own. We believe that sparking this confidence in children early on will instill a love of reading.

While the content of the app and the home study kit is the same, the biggest difference between the two is parental involvement. With the home study kit, you are the primary teacher: teaching the lessons, playing the songs, reading together, and administering the worksheets. The app requires little parent supervision. All instruction and practice are included in the app. The only thing you, as the teacher, would need to do is keep track of progress as far as academic requirements go. But not for long! We are developing an in-app progress tracker that will allow parents to check in on the phonetic sounds, letters, ebooks and songs their child has completed. You’ll also have access to a printable report card for easy reference.

The Phonics Museum has been a blessing for many families with young readers. "Emma, who is in first grade, screamed through PM 1, and emerged on the other side able to read all the directions for phonics worksheets, read Bede's, and the First Grade First Favorites independently,” says Melanie Dowling of her daughter. “She does them and the comprehension guides by herself. Thanks for making these moments happen!"

Ready to make moments like these? Sign up for a free trial of the Phonics Museum app today!