The science of reading curriculum approach is one of the best ways to help your beginning readers become fluent readers who love books. This systematic approach to teaching reading is a great way to engage your early learners and build reading fluency with a series of proven evidence-based steps.
I’m excited to share some of my favorite reading curriculum options, science of reading activities, and phonics instruction tools. I hope these resources will help you teach reading this school year in a way that’s fun and engaging for all your students!
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What Is The Science of Reading?
The science of reading is comprised of practices influenced by more than 40 years of research. This research has led to a science of reading program teachers can follow to ensure their students become fluent readers.
The pillars of the science of reading curriculum focus on phonemic awareness, phonics, word recognition, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.
Understanding The 5 Pillars of Reading
Understanding the 5 pillars of reading can help you build foundational skills with your early readers through easy lesson plans and early literacy activities. The 5 essential components of reading are phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Each literacy component is equally important in reading and should be explicitly taught.
Establishing phonological awareness is the first step toward mastering reading for elementary school students. You will know a student has mastered this skill when they can hear, identify, and manipulate sounds without looking at the actual letters or words.
The difference between phonological awareness and understanding phonics is written symbols. Once your student has a good grasp on manipulating and identifying sounds, it’s time to introduce text into their reading journey.
Are you looking for the best way to build proficient readers with phonics skills? Check out my free printable Phonics Scope and Sequence Chart for a quick version you can use to teach the phonics skills students need.
Fluency is all about having the ability to read as well as you speak. This means that students can read accurately, smoothly, and with expression. A fluent reading student should not have to stop and decode words.
Fluency is vital for skilled readers because it is the bridge between word recognition and comprehension. When your students can read fluently on grade level, they are able to focus on the meaning behind the words for a closer reading rather than simply decoding text.
There are two kinds of vocabulary: oral vocabulary and reading vocabulary. Oral vocabulary words are those we hear when listening or speaking. Reading vocabulary words are written and read within the text. Decodable readers rely heavily on vocabulary words your students will have heard orally to help them figure out tricky words using context clues. It’s a great way to begin building a strong reading vocabulary with your students.
If a student is unfamiliar with a word, it can be difficult to understand the meaning within the text. If you read aloud to students they can increase their oral and reading vocabularies so they can become proficient reading students more quickly.
I’ve always told my young readers at first you learn to read, then you read to learn. Students in the primary grades might still be learning to read, but following best practices and science of reading research will have them reading to learn in no time. After all, the ultimate goal of a reader is to comprehend the text.
Using A Science of Reading Curriculum
Using a science of reading curriculum means you’ll be following a well-researched approach to teaching your students how to read and improving their reading skills this year. The science of reading method has been studied and research has shown that systematic instruction and practice over time help students become better readers.
So how can you use science of reading curriculum programs in your classroom? There are many options! Following the reading pillars above will help you to practice each reading skill with your students in-depth and ensure mastery before moving on.
My Favorite Reading Curriculum Resources
There are a variety of awesome reading curriculum resources you can use to help your students increase vocabulary, build comprehension, and practice fluency. I like using crafts, books, and games in addition to my lessons. Check out some of my favorite children’s books with a science-of-reading curriculum approach.
Games are a great hands-on approach to building reading skills and practicing the science of reading curriculum steps with your early learners too. Discover some of my students’ favorite reading games below.
Adding reading curriculum resources and tools to your classroom literacy center is another great way to build fluency in the classroom. Here are some of my favorite literacy center activities and reading resources:
What are some of your favorite science of reading curriculum resources and tools? Share your favorites in the comment section. I’d love to check them out!
Printable Phonics Instruction Activities
Printable phonics instruction activities can make practicing phonics a lot more fun! I’ve put together all kinds of fun phonics crafts and printable activities you can do in the classroom with your early readers.
I like to theme my preschool and kindergarten lesson plans. Using thematic units in the classroom gives me the opportunity to combine lots of subjects with a theme that’s interesting and engaging for my students. Check out some of my themed lesson plans with phonics instruction activities to help you get started.
Science of Reading Phonics Passages and Worksheets
One easy way to ensure your students are mastering phonics is with my short vowel phonics passages. Each passage focuses on a different phonics skill throughout the easy reader. These decodables make it simple enough for young learners to practice each skill daily.
For added instruction, you’ll also like these phonics worksheets for your students. It’s the perfect way to assess that they are learning the phonics skills that are being taught in your science of reading curriculum.
Pond Themed Phonics Activities
There are two fun phonics Pond Lessons included in this bundle. Check out CVC Ducks activity to practice reading and recognizing CVC words with your students this year. Then, have fun practicing beginning sounds with the printable Lilypad Begining Sounds Activity.
Bug Themed Phonics Lessons
Help your students build phonological awareness with silly Ants In Your Pants Rhymes. Then, practice syllables with a printable Buggy Syllables activity. Finally, explore beginning sounds with my Bee Hive Beginning Sounds pages in this Bug Theme bundle.
Space Themed Literacy Skills Practice
Do your kids love astronauts? Then you won’t want to miss my Space Themed Lessons including literacy skills practice with a fun outer space theme.
Get started by practicing individual sounds of letters with my ABC Moon Craters. Then, practice rhyming with Rocket Rhymes. Finish up with one of the fun read aloud book suggestions included in this bundle.
More Help Teaching Reading In the Classroom
An evidence-based approach to reading for grades K through 2 is the best way classroom teachers can help their students master reading skills. Fortunately, there are so many fun ways to teach reading in the classroom. Discover more of my helpful resources for teaching reading in the classroom below.
Practice key skill areas by focusing on the main components in the science of reading curriculum using my alphabet resources. Grab a free sample of my alphabet activities to try out in your classroom, then check out the entire bundle for a years worth of introductory reading centers you won’t want to miss.
Are you following a structured literacy approach in your classroom? Will you use the science of reading curriculum method with your early readers? What’s your favorite way to practice reading skills in the classroom?
Share your tips and tricks in the comments. I can’t wait to read them and add a few of your favorites to my lesson plans this school year too!