Our model uses specific materials which we have found effective. The mix of decoding and orthographic mapping lessons, contextualized reading practice and group-building games collectively create a unique and enjoyable learning experience. We also have added the app Ultimate Phonics that students can use to practice their decoding.

The Bare Bones of Reading (PDF)

Decoding Programs

ABECEDARIAN Reading Program by Michael Bend, Ph.D.

We stress the use of a systematic, intensive, efficient program. ABeCeDarian is easy to learn, scripted to teach you how to correctly use it, inexpensive, and offers a lot of free support materials online.

NOTE: In response to the exciting research listed in our research section, Michael Bend has adapted and improved his workbooks and teachers’ guides. BE SURE TO ORDER THE NEWEST  VERSIONS.


REWARDS for teaching decoding multi-syllable words, from Voyager Sopris.

Orthographic Mapping Activities

ONE MINUTE ACTIVITIES in Equipped for Reading Success by David Kilpatrick, PhD, 2016.


Contextualized Reading

LET’S READ: A LINGUISTIC APPROACH, by Barnhart & Barnhart, 2010.

TALK OF THE BLOCK (Series) by New Readers Press had gone out of print, but if you call them they will print them to order. There must have been complaints! 1-800-448-8878.

Reading practice using simple themes that apply directly to everyday life is a great way to engage students. We use the Talk of the Block series which consists of 4 main themes; Home, Health, Family and Shopping.

New Readers Press has other great titles as well, such as City Dreams, Health Stories, the Challenger series, and Easy Stories Plus, many with a bit of humor. Students also enjoy the Laubach Readers because they are some of the first stories they can read.

WILSON Reading System Student Readers and Stories for Older Students by Barbara Wilson at

JUNKYARD DAN series and others by Elise Leonard from Fantastic Fiction, Great adult interest novels at low reading level at

TANA REIFF BOOKS, Pathfinders Series, Humour Series and more at Grass Roots Press at

Group Building Games

DOLCH WORDS BINGO–This is long ago out of print, but we may be able to share masters so you can print your own.

CRAZY CARDS  by Sound Readers

Games are a great way to add a  fun component to a program. They help to form closer relationships among students, strengthening the group as a whole. We end each learning session with Crazy Cards; a card game based on UNO and Crazy 8s that that allows for enjoyable decoding practice. It also may help with orthographic mapping if students make up a sentence for the word they lay. There are 15 decks and each focuses on either short vowels (Crazy Shorts), long vowels (Crazy Longs), or the other vowel spellings (Crazy Mores).

We have adapted the game by playing with each person’s cards face up on the table so we can help each other. With the cards visible, the strategizing of the game changes because players know the cards their opponents are trying to get rid of–makes it very interesting in groups with real card sharks! 

Sound Readers has also created new card games and board games which may be great for our students. We’re going to try them, too. The company is giving a discount on these games for people using our toolkit.

Decoding APP

ULTIMATE PHONICS is a great decoding app by Spencer Learning that can be installed on phones, laptops and computers so students can practice anytime, anyplace. 262 lessons, and the first 50 are free. Load from the device app store or at where you can also get support info.