Rod and Staff readers use Bible stories for reading material, and many people love these readers for the Godly content and emphasis on Christian character development. Reading workbooks, worksheets, and phonics workbooks are available that correlate with the basic textbooks. Problems with the previous version such as dialect, uneven progression, and inappropriate content have been remedied, although there is still a lot of busy work that should be used only as needed.
First Grade: We Learn about God
This revised edition consists of three basic texts covering five units (Reader for Unit 1, Reader for Units 2 and 3, and Reader for Units 4 and 5). Three teacher's manuals cover all program components. They are designed to provide instruction in reading, phonics, language, spelling, and penmanship. Flash cards and additional readers are available at extra cost.
Second Grade: Stories about God's People
Two readers with five reading workbooks and three phonics workbooks cover reading and phonics. The reading workbooks are closely correlated with the texts, but the phonics workbooks are not as closely associated, allowing more flexibility in their use. Readers and reading workbooks can be used without the phonics workbooks if you are using another method of phonics instruction. Bible stories provide most of the content in the readers. Two teacher's manuals cover both texts and the workbooks.
Third Grade: God Leads His People
This revised edition includes two hardback books with five reading workbooks. Phonics is reviewed, and reading skills are developed. Language is covered in the separate text, Building Christian English. A single teacher's manual, covering text and workbooks, contains answers to workbook exercises and pointers for oral reading and lesson discussion.
Fourth Grade: Exploring with Gos
This revised edition includes one hardback student text, three workbooks, and one teacher's manual. Most of the reading selections are Bible stories. Phonics skills are reinforced while oral reading and comprehension skills are developed.
Fifth Grade: A Time to Plant
For fifth grade level, one hardcover textbook contains reading selections plus questions and exercises. Reading selections include prose and poetry other than Bible stories. Goals at this level are to develop listening, speaking, vocabulary, comprehension, study, and writing skills while encouraging an interest in good literature. The teacher's manual contains answers to exercise questions and some teaching instruction.
Sixth Grade: A Time to Build
This text is similar in format to the fifth grade text, A Time to Plant, but it has added emphasis on vocabulary development for sixth graders. A student textbook and teacher's guide are available, as well as a workbook of vocabulary exercises.
Seventh Grade: A Time to Gather
This seventh-grade-level reader includes stories, poetry (featuring selections from the Bible), and composition themes. Vocabulary lists and exercises follow most lessons. The inexpensive teacher's guide contains answers as well as teaching suggestions.
Eighth Grade: A Time of Peace
This eighth grade reader includes narratives, Bible prose and poetry, English poems, and essays for a total of 60 selections. According to the publisher, "The selections have been chosen on the basis of both Scriptural integrity and academic merit." Many selections are about "faith in action." Godly character building is a primary goal throughout. Questions (written and discussion) follow each selection. The teacher's manual contains teaching tips and answers.
Ninth Grade: A Time to Heal
A Time to Heal features essays, narratives, and poems, most of which are biblical or religious. A number of narratives teach Anabaptist beliefs. Students also learn some literary terminology.