Posts Tagged theory

Blending Letters to Make Words – Your Child Can Catch up in Reading this Summer!

Posted in blending letter sounds, blending letter sounds to make words, blending letters, phonics curriculum, phonics first curriculum, phonics first program, phonics program | Comments Off on Blending Letters to Make Words – Your Child Can Catch up in Reading this Summer!

Is your child struggling to read?


 We can help!


We really can! 


First, however, let me tell you a little about how to teach your child to blend letters together as he reads.   

As important as it is for children to learn each individual letter “sound,” eventually every child will need to learn how to blend the sounds of the letters together.  At Candy 4WAY Phonics, we make this blending process easy because we color code word parts and place those word parts into blending segments.

For example, before we introduce the word cat, we give children step-by-step lessons in the individual sounds for the letters c   short a   and  t.   

Following that instruction, children are taught to blend just the first two letters of the word cat.  They are taught to:

1)    say the sound of the first consonant – c

2)    say the sound of the short vowel  – a

3)    blend those two sounds together like this:  c  a    – caaaa

When an instructor demonstrates that ca blend, he should hold out the sound of short a like this:  c  aaaa    – caaaa

Second, children are taught to:

1)    say the blend of ca

2)    tack on the sound of the final consonant like this:  caaaa   t     – caaaat    -cat

It is very important when beginning blending lessons with a child that he FIRST thoroughly learns to distinguish between the individual short vowel sounds.  In fact, children should learn to “punch” the short vowel sounds loudly so that they can hear themselves pronounce the distinctive sound for each short vowel.   

At Candy 4WAY Phonics we supply Multisensory Vowel Pictures to help children hear/see each vowel sound (in pictures).  For example, most children have a difficult time telling the difference between the short a sound and the short e sound.  Our Multisensory Vowel Pictures help children to see/hear this distinction. 

Parents, make it easy on yourselves.  The entire Candy 4WAY Phonics COMPLETE Curriculum  sells for just $9.97 in INSTANT DOWNLOAD format.  This makes it quick and affordable for parents to purchase and print what they need for each day’s phonics/reading lesson and also to click through the pages of past and future lessons they may desire to view.    

For those parents who are not certain of the sound of each of the letters and blends, for just $10.00 more you can purchase our CD-Rom program in which you can hear me read every letter, and every blend, and every word and every sentence of every chart and every lesson out loud.  Simply print that day’s lesson, then put the Candy 4WAY Phonics Audio CD-Rom into your computer to hear that day’s lesson read aloud.  Parents can practice right along with the lesson before they ever present it to their child.  Actually hearing the lesson ahead of time removes all the guesswork. Your child can learn his letter sounds and blends in a systematic, step-by-step daily format. 

Why pay $300 for a phonics curriculum when you can purchase the whole COMPLETE package for just $9.97 or $19.97 in CD-Rom format

The Candy 4WAY Phonics COMPLETE Curriculum includes all of the following

  • An 82-page e-book entitled: How to Teach Systematic Phonics
  • An easy-to-use Instruction Guide
  • 100 step-by-step daily phonics lessons (these lessons will carry your child from age 4 all the way through a 4th grade reading level and higher)
  • Multisensory vowel helps
  • Flashcards
  • Rhyming Alphabet Charts
  • Sequenced Phonics Readers built right into the lessons
  • Systematic Review and Drill
  • An audio CD-Rom in which you will hear every chart and every lesson read aloud (the audio CD-Rom is included only with the CD-Rom package)
  • Spelling helps, pronunciation helps, and much more.


We know you’ll be pleased!


Carol Kay, President

Candy 4WAY Phonics

Does Phonics Work?

Posted in Phonics vs Look/Say | Comments Off on Does Phonics Work?


Let me begin by saying that when it comes to reading, Phonics Makes a Mammoth Difference! Yes! Phonics works!


What is Phonics? 

Phonics is learning how to recognize and blend together the sounds of letters.  For example, when a child sees a word such as bracelet, if he has learned Phonics, he will break the word apart in his mind like this:  

 br    ace    let.  

He will be able to blend together the letters br

He will know that the letter a says its own name because of the silent e at the end of that word part. 

He will know that the letter c says the  s-s-s-s sound because it comes before the letter e

He will know that the letter e in let says its short sound because he has had tons of practice reading three-letter, short-vowel words and word parts (CVC Words). 

Finally, a Phonics student will be able to blend all of those word parts together to read the word bracelet the first time he encounters the word.


How does Phonics enable a child to read all the words on the page?

A Phonics student will not struggle with a word such as bracelet.  He will be able to sound it out even if he’s never seen the word before because he will have completed a Systematic, Synthetic Phonics Curriculum and mastered each daily phonics lesson within that curriculum before he’s gone on to the next lesson.


Phonics students have taken the time necessary to learn all the possible letter blends within words.  They have mastered these blends step-by-step, one day at a time, using a step-by-step, user/friendly, systematic, synthetic phonics curriculum.


Phonics students know that each letter can have many sounds, but they also know that when some letters are combined with other letters, they can make different sounds. Phonics students have learned the sounds that letters make alone and the sounds that letters make when they are combined with other letters.


How is Phonics different from the “look say” method of reading? 

The “look say” reading method teaches a child to memorize whole words.  It does not teach a child the individual sounds within words or how to blend those sounds together.  Sadly, after a child has memorized about 2,000 words, his brain simply cannot remember any more words.  This is devastating, because by the end of the fourth grade, children need to be able to read between 30,000 and 40,000 words.  Phonics students have no problem reading this many words, because they can blend together the parts that make up words


How is Phonics different from the Whole Language Method of Teaching Reading?

The Whole Language Method teaches children to guess at words by their shape, by the first letter, by recognizing random word parts, or by the context of the rest of the words on the page.  In contrast, Phonics students do not need to guess at words.  Phonics students do not need to figure out a word by the context of the sentence or by the shape of a word or by recognizing a word part inside the word.  Phonics students can read through unfamiliar words by blending all the word parts together from left to right.   


Do struggling readers do better with Phonics? 

Struggling readers stop struggling to read after they have learned all the phonics blends.  Being able to sound out all the parts of words puts an end to struggling readers.  


At what age should Phonics Instruction begin?

Parents are the best judge for when their child needs to begin reading instruction, but children can begin reading instruction as young as 3 or 4 years old.  Three year olds can begin learning to hear the sounds of letters within words through rhyming games and multisensory letter cards.  A child as young as 4 years old can learn to blend sounds together to form three-letter, short-vowel words (CVC words).  Some children who are 4 years old have been able to read multi-syllable words at a 1st grade reading level especially if they were taken through phonemic awareness and early blending skills with a systematic phonics preschool reading program.


How much do Systematic, Synthetic Phonics Curriculums cost?   

Phonics curriculums that include daily, systematic phonics lessons, multisensory help, phonics readers and phonics charts can cost parents as much as $300 to $400 dollars.  You can say it!  Ouch!

Some Phonics curriculums that include just the daily lessons can cost as little as $35.

However, there is one Phonics Curriculum that includes everything for as little as $9.97


Candy 4WAY Phonics includes all of the following for as little as $9.97:

*Easy-to-understand Instructions
*Systematic, Daily Phonics Lessons
*Multisensory Vowel Helps
*Sequenced Phonics Readers
*Continuous, Spiral Phonics Drill
*Fun Phonics Lessons and Stories
*Rhyming Alphabet Charts
ifetime Rhyming Phonics Charts – and so much more!


Where can I find an affordable systematic, synthetic, explicit, intensive phonics curriculum like the one described above?

That’s what Candy 4WAY Phonics is all about.  Candy 4WAY Phonics was developed to make systematic phonics affordable for everyone. 

Click here to read the true story of a little girl named Candy, and to find out about the phonics curriculum that enabled little Candy to progress from being the worst reader in her reading group to being the best reader in her reading group.



Carol Kay, President

Candy 4WAY Phonics

To see all of our phonics resources including:  multisensory flashcards, fun phonics games, an audio phonics pronunciation CD-rom, a preschool systematic phonics package, and much more,
Click Here.








Why Did I Pull My Children out of the Public Schools When The Public Schools are Free? Well, because Moms do Strange Things When They’re Desperate! (From the President of Candy 4WAY Phonics)

Posted in public schools vs homeschool | Comments Off on Why Did I Pull My Children out of the Public Schools When The Public Schools are Free? Well, because Moms do Strange Things When They’re Desperate! (From the President of Candy 4WAY Phonics)


We lived in a small town in Michigan.  At the time, four of our six children had been born. Just like all of our friends, we enrolled our oldest son in public school kindergarten when he turned five years old.


Well, you know, “kindergarten,” not much going on there.  The early signs for how your child is “doing” in school do not show up until the first grade when a child begins reading lessons.  However!  Well, wow!  When Jimmy entered first grade, did we get an education! 


I had no idea that phonics was no longer used in the school system.  Oh, I knew that there were other methods of reading going on in the classroom, but I always believed that phonics was at the foundation of those methods. Duh!  I was so dumb!


No!  What I really mean is: I was misinformed.  I had learned to read with systematic phonics, so I assumed that my children would learn to read this way, too.  After all, wouldn’t our government schools insist on using the educational methods that actually worked?


We found out that “phonics was out” when after 6 months into the first-grade reading curriculum our little Jimmy could only read three words:  aanthe


I asked Jimmy to “sound out” the words we encountered together, and he said, “What are you talking about, Mommy?”


Of course, when I discovered that Jimmy was NOT learning to “sound out” words, I immediately went to the teacher and asked her why Jimmy was NOT learning to “sound out” words.  She said, “Sounding out” words is NOT something we do anymore.  There are other, better, more efficient methods to teach reading than phonics.”


Sadly, things got much worse! 


At the first parent-teacher conference, I also discovered that our dear, little, precious Jimmy had been placed inside a refrigerator box  so that he could “focus” more on his studies and less on what was going on around him.  That was all I needed!  That was going to stop! 


Jimmy was in an open-classroom school at that time, so we switched over to a standard, structured, public school classroom where a 20-year veteran X-Nun was the teacher.  Jimmy gained a tiny, itsy-bitsy, miniscule more in reading that second semester of his first-grade year simply because this X-Nun did use “some” phonics. 


However, at the beginning of second grade, Jimmy was assigned to a teacher that believed exactly the same way as his first teacher in the open-classroom school, except that she brought all of her non-phonics methods into a structured classroom.  Jimmy just couldn’t cope with these ridiculous reading methods.  In addition, by the end of second grade, we had also enrolled our second-oldest son in the 1st grade. 


To make this long story shorter, soon after talking with Jimmy’s principal and after our second-oldest son was assaulted on the school bus, I talked with a woman in Indiana who owned a teacher resource store who emphatically informed me that “homeschooling” was an option. 


I’d never heard of “homeschooling” before; I didn’t even know it was possible.  This lady told me that it was “very” possible, and that parents make the best teachers for their children.


So the following Monday I refused to put my children on the school bus.  I ordered a satellite homeschooling program and proceeded to homeschool my children thinking I was going to “get away with it!” 


Moms do strange things when they’re desperate! 


Little did I know that Michigan was one of the worst places to try to “get away with” homeschooling.  We had no laws to protect us, and we were running out of steam living only with an Attorney’s General’s “Opinion” about homeschooling.  As a result, tons of homeschoolers in Michigan were being taken to probate court as a direct challenge to their choice of education. 


Wouldn’t you know it, some lady in our church turned us in.  What was I going to do? 


I contacted one other mother that I knew was doing homeschooling.  She gave me the name of an attorney who was taking up homeschooling cases in the state of Michigan.  We hired him, wasted $200, provided all of our own documentation, and yet, he didn’t intervene for us with the school officials at all. 


Within two months after we began homeschooling, I received a phone call from a man who turned out to be the Chairman for the Homeschooling Investigating Committee for the whole state of Michigan.  He was the man who was taking all the homeschoolers to probate court.  When he called me, I told him I had hired an attorney to defend us, I refused to talk to him, and I hung up on him.


That was back in my immature Christian days.  Can you even imagine Jesus Christ hanging up on anybody? 


I do not mean this as a defense to myself in any way, but, moms do strange things when they’re desperate! 


Some friends from our church were visiting with us shortly afterwards, and we began discussing what the Bible says about how to respond to those in authority.  We specifically went over Romans, Chapter 13, where God tells us: 


Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.”


Needless to say, I was under conviction! 

When “that man” called me back, I apologized, and I explained to him what I had discovered in the scriptures.  We began to talk.  He listened, I talked.  He questioned, I answered.  I was honest.  I told him all of my fears about the public school system and the fact that I would not, could not, tolerate what was going on there.  He listened.  God worked! 


This man ended up telling me, “I will never take you to probate court.  You are the only homeschooler that has been willing to talk to me.  You have also told me about your beliefs, and I want you to know that I have been listening, because my secretary is also a Christian, and she has been telling me some of the same things that you have stated.  I give you permission to do homeschooling, and what’s more, if you need any curriculum, you just let me know, and I’ll show you how to order it for yourself, or I will personally get it for you.”


I began homeschooling and tutoring phonics to children all around me.  I grabbed onto every book on phonics that had ever been written.  All of my “teacher” friends, suddenly anxious to help me out, gave me all of their methods classes textbooks; coupled with my own learning experiences in phonics, I began to put together a systematic phonics curriculum based upon what was taught to children in the 1950’s who had struggled with the Dick and Jane, Look/say Reading series.  (Can you believe I put that all in one sentence?)

The results I obtained were outstanding!

About three years later, I began teaching phonics part time in a Christian School.

I came across all kinds of reading problems, and I soon discovered that linguistic, synthetic, analytic, systematic phonics solved the problems of every student I encountered except for the students who were diagnosed as EMI.  Oh, each child had a different time table for learning, depending upon his shortcomings and his talents, but given enough time, systematic phonics worked. 

Oh, by the way, do you remember “that man” that I had originally hung up on?  You know, the Chairman for the Homeschooling Investigating Committee for the whole state of Michigan?   Well, he gave our Christian school permission to set up a homeschooling umbrella program under my direction for other families considering homeschooling. 


When a man’s ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him. (Proverbs 16:7)


In summary, we continued homeschooling all six of our children all the way through high school. 

They have become successful as business owners, in engineering, as ministerial directors, with two still in college studying pre-med and early childhood care. 

And, of course, we established the Candy 4WAY Phonics Program, a program based upon the true story of a little girl named, Candy, in order to make a complete systematic 4WAY Phonics curriculum, lessons, readers, multisensory phonics helps, phonics charts and flashcards, phonics resources, and phonics games affordable for everyone




Carol Kay, President

Candy 4WAY Phonics