Stone Tablet Press has developed a complete phonics program that not only reflects Catholic thought and traditional values, but delivers solid instruction for kindergarten through second grade. The Little Angel Readers are a set of four readers, each about 80 pages in length. Each reader has a corresponding workbook that can be purchased separately or as part of a complete set that includes a teacher's manual. The manual rounds out the program with daily lesson plans, multi-sensory activities, and spelling and handwriting instruction.
If you are content with your current phonics program, the readers and workbooks may be used for enrichment. The workbooks reinforce lessons.
The readers are phonics-based and use a word family approach (e.g., "man," "ran," "van" taught together). Sight words are kept to a minimum and appear in boldface when they first appear. Rebus pictures are sometimes used in place of sight words. The full-color illustrations employed throughout the books are inviting to young children; I especially like the depictions of guardian angels looking out for the little ones in the stories.
If you are using this as a complete program, the teacher's manual provides approximately fifty 45-minute lessons for each of the four readers. Lessons include drill and review, art projects and fun activities, plus spelling and writing practice. Workbooks are similar in concept to the Modern Curriculum Press Plaid Phonics series with a variety of activities and large print. Spelling lessons are closely tied to the phonics lessons. Reading readiness and reading disabilities are addressed in the manual as well.
The readers and workbooks are recommended as follows: Level A - advanced kindergarten or 1st grade, B - 1st grade, C - 1st or 2nd grade, and D - 2nd grade. The author has included recommended readers at the end of the teacher's manual for continuing lessons past the second grade. [reviewed by Maureen Wittmann and Cathy Duffy]