Age 6-8 Reading is the second and final reading course within Moving Beyond the Page’s program, and it follows their Age 5-7 Reading. Before starting Age 6-8 Reading, students should be able to read both short-vowel and long-vowel words. This course teaches the more challenging elements of phonics along with reading skills, composition, grammar, and spelling. When finished with this course, students should be able to read simple chapter books.
This one-year course is divided into two semesters, with separate books for each. In all, there are 32 lessons and a final project, and each lesson should take a week. The course components are two student activity books (printed in black and white), two parent manuals, 15 small readers (one about witches that some parents might find problematic), and a Reading Materials Kit. The Reading Materials Kit includes a Shared Reading book and five other books: Book of Poems and Verses by Moving Beyond the Page, A Color of His Own by Leo Lionni, Frog and Toad All Year by Arnold Lobel, Mouse Soup by Arnold Lobel, and Penny and Her Marble by Kevin Henkes. The kit also includes many other items, such as sets of cards with sight words, word-building elements, lowercase letters, and theme words; a laminated writing sheet; dry-erase markers; a blank booklet; and sticky notes. The Age 6-8 Full Year Reading Package includes all these items, but you also can purchase them separately.
Moving Beyond the Page now has all of their curriculum available in digital formats, and the purchase of a parent manual or a package grants you 18 months of access to their digital resources, including digital versions of the curriculum.
With the digital books, you can print extra activity pages, use parent manuals on a mobile device, and access embedded web links to videos, games, or websites. Also, older students can type answers onto activity pages, and then save or print them as PDFs.
The digital resources also include access to Learning Gates and Portfolio. Learning Gates has online quizzes that students will complete either two or three days per week by listening, reading, and selecting the correct answers.
Portfolio is a place where you can upload files or pages with text, images, videos, etc. You can invite others to view the student’s work, a useful feature if parents have to submit sample work to others or want to share for other reasons.
How it Works
The program is multisensory with children listening, reading, writing, discussing, watching videos, working with flashcards, playing games, completing various types of activity pages (some cut-and-paste), and completing online quizzes.
The parent manuals are the heart of the course. Each week’s lesson begins with a list of “Facts and Definitions,” such as a phonics rule, the definition of a word such as digraph, and the definition of the question mark. This is followed by the “Lesson Focus,” a list of key concepts to be taught. Next, a list of required materials lets you know what you will need, including items from the Reading Materials Kit and other items, such as scissors and colored pencils.
The program requires parental instruction and interaction most of the time. Parents are told what to say and do, although it is only partially scripted. Often, parents are told to ask questions designed to help students make observations and come to conclusions on their own.
Lessons are broken down under Day 1, Day 2, etc., presenting a well-thought-out progression for all the different types of activities that is easy to follow. Instructions for pages in the student activity books are only in the parent manuals.
The student activity books reinforce lessons but are not the primary source of instruction. While some activity pages share similar formats, overall there’s lots of variety. Especially in the second semester, students often respond by writing words or sentences.
Students practice reading using the Shared Reading book, with students and parents taking turns reading the designated paragraphs. Students also read from the 15 illustrated readers (5.5” square and printed in full color), flashcards, and words on the activity pages.
The poems and storybooks are read aloud to the child. Comprehension questions for the parent to ask are in the parent manual.
Spelling and grammar are also embedded within the lessons.
Moving Beyond the Page’s reading program, as presented in Age 5-7 reading and Age 6-8 Reading, is comprehensive and thorough but moves at a faster pace than many other programs. This is great for gifted children, but it can also work with children who need more time to absorb each concept by moving through the program more slowly and providing more repetition and practice.
You can check it out in advance with free online samples of the first two weeks’ lessons before buying.