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phonics learning with bob books

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How can we teach our children to read?

There are different schools of thought for how we should teach our children to productively, and confidently, learn to read. I recommend teaching a rigorous phonics program to children. That is, children learn the sound that each letter, or phoneme makes.

For example, the word: mat has three phonemes : m, a, t

Another example, the word: chat has three phonemes : ch, a, t

The child is taught to decode the words through sounding them out.  It is important to begin slow when teaching young children, and Bob Books aid in this early reading time. First, make sure your child is ready. Don’t push this beginning stage, wait for them to be excited, and to begin, we can teach our children 3 or 4 very different letters and their sounds. This will help prevent mix ups (i.e. don’t teach m and n at the same time or b and d!)

For example : m, s, a, t

This is what Bob Books does. We start at the very beginning. We work on confidence and mastery.

DSC04473The book set comes in a sturdy box, so all of the brightly colored and simply illustrated books can stay in one place.  DSC04475 The simple drawings do not distract the reader from the letters that are creating words and a sentence.DSC04476

{This post contains affiliate links, please see my disclosure policy.} 

Once your child has mastered the first book of Set 1, they can move on. There are 12 books in each Set. Each one building on the last book. We like to create the words with our little foam letters.

Bob Books are a wonderful essential for any beginning reader. And at $10 or less per set, they are also very economical. The phonics books start slow and build confidence for the reader by not starting on too difficult wording.

Phonics work is different from immersion, or “memorized” reading. As adults, we don’t sound out our words, we read from practice and memorization. But our word memory did not come without practice and diligence and time as a learner. I believe there is a place for guided reading, or sight reading, this is when children are introduced to various sight words (think: and, the, look, see) with pictures and beginning word sounds as clues to other, more difficult words.

However, sight reading is also a part of every day life!  My son can read STOP from a stop sign or TARGET on a store, and this is valid reading and part of the process.  Bob Books does have a set that includes this type of sight word reading: Bob Books Sight Words.

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Find the right Bob Books Set!!

You can find out here which Bob Book would best suit your child at his/her level!

My First Bob Books: Alphabet

My First Bob Books: Pre-Reading Skills

Bob Books Set 1: Beginning Readers

Bob Books Set 2: Advancing Beginners

Bob Books Set 3: Word Families

Bob Books Set 4: Complex Words

Bob Books Set 5: Long Vowels

Bob Books Set: Rhyming Words

Bob Books Sight Words: Kindergarten

Bob Books Sight Words: First Grade

Free Bob Books Printables!!

These little phonics books were enhanced by a group of six wonderful homeschool bloggers!  They have created free printables which pair perfectly with the Bob Books.  This enhances the work with the books!!  So many activities are included in the various free printable packs.  From incorporating handwriting into the work, tactilely touching various cut printables, or playing spelling or rhyming games.

You can find all the links to the Free Hands-On Activities and Printable for Bob Books at This Reading Mama.

FREE BOB Books Printables for Sets 1-5 | This Reading Mama

Or you can find more Free Printables and Resources for the Bob Books at 3 Dinosaurs!BOB Books Printables Round Up - 3Dinosaurs.com


Bob Books is giving away the set of your choice to one lucky reader! You can find out here what book set would best suit your child.

Enter at the Rafflecopter below.  This giveaway opens Sunday, November 2nd at 6am EST and closes Saturday, November 15th at 11:59pm EST.  Please see terms and conditions.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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I was provided a set of Bob Books in exchange for an honest review, opinions are always my own. Read my full disclosure policy here.

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  1. When my daughter first started showing an interest in reading, BOB books were the first I bought because I’d heard such great things about them. I love the pictures are simple; my daughter likes to draw them and make up her own stories with the characters! I teach both sight words and phonics – I think they both come in handy.

  2. I just started a new program this year in my preschool class that focuses on phonics as opposed to just the letter. We used the Bob books for the first time this year. My students love them!

  3. Charlotte Loveridge says:

    In the UK we use a synthetic phonics programme whereby the children are first taught the set 1 sounds which consist of single sounds such as m a s d t i n p g o and so on. They are then taught ‘special friends’ sounds which are digraph sounds – two letters, one sound such as ch, sh, wh, th etc. The children are taught how to say the sound, recognise the sound, write the sound and then use the sound in assisted blending sessions therefore building the foundations for early reading. We also teach ‘red’ words which are sight words.

    I would be fascinated to see how Bob books would work in the UK!

  4. I teach phonics and sight words together. We learn the short a sound and build word families. We also learn sight words to help us get our reading legs under us and to help us write our first sentences.

  5. Mary Happymommy says:

    I prefer teaching phonics first.

  6. I’ve been working on sight words with my grandson and he seems to be picking up on those pretty quick. These books would be very beneficial for him.

  7. Where do you find the foam letters?

  8. My nephew is just starting to read. He is in the sound-it-out stage. These would be perfect for him.

  9. Mandy Kauffman says:

    I learned using sight words but I think phonics would be a huge help for my son who is just starting to learn how to read. Thanks for the giveaway! :)

  10. I like to teach by doing letter sounds

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