Blumenfeld’s Alpha-Phonics

Blumenfeld’s Alpha-Phonics

Sam Blumenfeld created the Alpha-Phonics program many years ago, and it has been published by a few different publishers over the years. You can read my reviews of the versions of the program published by Chalcedon and Paradigm for more details of the methodology, since they are all very similar. Blumenfeld most recently published it under the title Blumenfeld’s Phonics for Success, and you can purchase that book through the publisher’s website.

While the Alpha-Phonics program remains available from other publishers under that name, you can access the complete program based on Blumenfelds’ Phonics for Success for free online at Camp Constitution. This online version displays one or more pages from the book along with each of the program’s 128 lessons, and it also has video teaching presented by Blumenfeld for each lesson. In addition, the eleven-book set of Blumenfeld’s Alpha-Phonics First Readers are included and coordinated with the program. Children can watch the video lessons along with a parent or tutor, then practice with the downloaded pages.

Blumenfeld recommended teaching cursive along with phonics, so the website includes Blumenfeld’s Handwriting Online. This section of the website has 73 free lessons in cursive handwriting and even includes suggestions for teaching left-handed writers. The lessons do not include student worksheets. The lessons tell you what students should practice, but you need to provide models yourself on a whiteboard, on paper, or in some other manner.

The readers, lesson plans, practice assignments, a progress chart, and audio transcripts are all printable, but the lessons pages for phonics and handwriting are not. However, you can purchase Blumenfeld’s Alpha-Phonics Workbook, a physical book with all of the lesson pages for this program for a suggested donation of $3, but it isn’t essential.

Other Blumenfeld Resources

The Camp Constitution website serves as an archive of Blumenfeld’s work, so there are many more free resources than those I have already mentioned. Among them are the complete text of his book How to Tutor in which Blumenfeld teaches parents how to teach both math and phonics.

Blumenfeld wrote articles and books about the sorry state of education in the United States. Many of those are available as free PDFs on the website, including his two influential books Is Public Education Necessary? and  N.E.A.: Trojan Horse in American Education.

Those who prefer audio resources might want to check out the free recordings of Blumenfeld’s lectures and interviews on Podomatic.

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