Last Updated on August 28, 2023
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How to learn to read in 100 easy lessons
Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons is a complete, step-by-step program that shows parents simply and clearly how to teach their children to read. Twenty minutes a day is all you need, and within 100 teaching days your child will be reading on a solid second-grade reading level. It’s a sensible, easy-to-follow, and enjoyable way to help your child gain the essential skills of reading. The entire program is contained in one volume.
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Reviews are solely the opinions of the contributor.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by KarenMarch 24, 2020Pros: Straightforward, effective lessons
Cons: Not colorful
Grades Used: PreK5My daughter started showing signs of reading readiness after watching her sister become proficient at reading (public school), so I asked her if she wanted me to teach her to read. She did. I picked up a used copy of this book on the recommendation of an experienced homeschool mom who had used it successfully with several of her children. When I first looked through the book after reading the parent section I thought it was going to be kind of a drag—no color and lots of funky symbols used to help children learn the sounds gave me pause. I went ahead with it anyway since it is a classic go to for many homeschooling families. I’m glad I did! My daughter just loves working in this book. She tells people that it’s her “very special book for reading lessons.” She is happy to do lessons from it each day and will ask for it if we haven’t done it yet by the afternoon. She has gotten to the point where she can read small words she encounters out in her daily life, and we are just around halfway done. I have found this book to be an effective, inexpensive resource for teaching my child to read and will save it for my youngest.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by LauraSeptember 28, 2019Pros: Very organized progression of skills
Cons: Negative motivation language and big, floppy book
Grades Used: preschoolI used this method with all five of my now grown sons and for my older grandaughter and am coaching a daughter-in-law to use it. The book fell apart after the second child and was hard for little hands to hold, so I made cards of the phonemes and used them as flash cards. And rewrote the stories too. I did not use the negative motivation “bet you can’t” language used in the book since I wanted to teach in a positive manner. And I also did not do writing with the reading lesson. Kept them short– ten minutes or less and did much more repetition after the first time through with my oldest son. With rereading the stories until they came easily– maybe another two to three times, readling a small group of 3-5 stories each day, by the time the kids got to about lesson 75, they were reading other things. No reading program is going to be exciting, but this one is silly and with extra repetition, is always easy for the kids.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Pamela GrewingMarch 16, 2019Pros: It works!
Cons: Kids need self discipline; parents need patience
Grades Used: PKI’m on my third child with this book. Every thing in the title is true except for “Easy”. The last 40 lessons are hard (or long) every time.
My middle child needed a lot of extra help and patience learning. I added soon card and a spell to reading game for him. My oldest and youngest took to it easier, but they are both more verbally inclined.
All of my children did this as part of my homeschool pre-school. 2 will finish at age 4, one at 5. All read well above grade level and have a love of reading that I expect to last a lifetime. One child could read independently before kindergarten and the second child by mid-term of his K year.
My kids go to public school for elementary where the other students learn to read horribly boring text by sight words. “Teach Your Child to Read…” is so much less boring than the drivel the school sends for homework in K and 1st grades. My kids are good readers and we skip the homework. I think my kids would hate reading if I let them learn using our schools method and texts.
Even though it isn’t easy and requires discipline on the child’s part and patience from the parent, I find this book a treasure that I’m very grateful for!
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by DeLisaSeptember 27, 2017Pros: It works!
Cons: It’s boring.
Grades Used: KIt’s been almost a month and my 5 year old can read a decent amount of words. It is honestly a struggle though. She has a serious case of ants in the pants, so it’s extremely hard for her to pay attention. She seems to respond better if I write out the lesson in colorful markers or sometimes I write it out on the driveway in colorful chalk. Then it’s just a matter of getting her to take a few seconds here and there to look and sound out words. We are usually done within 10 min- if I can get her undivided attention. With patience, we will get through it and she will do well. Be prepared to spice it up a bit for your own though.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Linda Lopez CamarilloApril 19, 2014Pros: Ease of use, phonics based, effective
Cons: Stories are somewhat lame
Grades Used: Pre K – 1I used this book with all three of my children, between the ages of three and six. (My oldest couldn’t wait to learn to read at three years old, otherwise, I would recommend waiting until they are ready.) This curriculum is easy to use, has a strong phonics base and is effective. Each lesson is broken up into reading/phonics instruction, reading comprehension and penmanship. Because I used another curriculum for penmanship, I used this book strictly for the reading and comprehension. Each of my children were reading at a solid second grade level after completion, and transitioned easily to the McGuffey Readers that I used for follow up. All of my children (ages 18, 11 and 7) enjoy reading. My two oldest are voracious readers, and have not had any problems, even with advanced literature. My youngest (7) reads nicely from his McGuffey Reader, which uses a wide vocabulary. It is very easy to use, as it is scripted for the parent. You can literally pick it up and use it once you have read the introduction at the beginning of the book. The only thing you need to prepare for each lesson is to cover up the picture until they have completed the story and you are ready to move on to the comprehension questions. The only downside to this book is that the stories are kind of lame, for the parent anyway! My kids thought they were silly, though, and seemed to enjoy them. After going through the book three times, I was glad to be done with it, but that’s just me! Overall, I highly recommend this curriculum, and found it to be a good fit for our family. (Note: I also used Riggs Institute phonogram cards after completion to cover any of the rare blends that were not in the book.)
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by KimeryApril 17, 2014Pros: Ease of use, scripted
Cons: not for advanced students?
Grades Used: KThis program might not work for everyone but it was perfect for our last child. When he was ready (and I tried it when he was 5 and no go) we whipped through the lessons. LOVED the scripted format with him sitting on the couch beside me. It really does teach them to read and in the beginning you don’t see how it will work, even for the reluctant learner. But it DID.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Diane MahonMarch 18, 2012Pros: Gets your child reading fast
Cons: A bit tedious for the child
Grades Used: 1This book was just what my son needed to start reading. I was nervous that he was starting first grade unable to read, but this program helped him move along really fast. He was soo ready, while other phonics programs were going too slow for him and he just wanted to read! There was some slight confusion with some long vowels being introduced early when a supplemental program I was using only used short vowels, but he seemed to work it out pretty quickly.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by NatlieFebruary 24, 2012Pros: it works! scripted
Cons: can get boring
Grades Used: kIf you’re nervous about teaching your child to read and the task is daunting, then 100 Lessons is an excellent resource. The book is scripted, which takes away the stress of wondering if you’re doing it right. And, although it can get boring for the kids as there is no color or flashy pages, I actually found this to work in our favor as my daughter got used to simple formats and responds well to my own homemade worksheets. It was also good for her to see that sometimes we have to work hard and press through to gain the benefits. There was great satisfaction from both of us when she finished the book and was reading far better than other kids her age and older.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Pat ForsytheFebruary 24, 2012Pros: easy to use; effective
Cons: not complete LA book
Grades Used: kI used this with all three of my children. It lays a very good foundation for sounding out words and getting children, even from different learning styles, to a second grade reading level in a few months. After this, you need to teach children the rules of spelling, but the reading part will come easily. With my global learning daughter, I needed to offer more support in the process by sounding words out and having her repeat what I did. You may need to adapt it for your child, but the beauty is that adapting is not difficult. Just make sure your child is ready to learn to read, and don’t jump the gun because some children were able to do this process at age three. My children were 5 (girls) or 6 (son) before I used this.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by SaraFebruary 24, 2012Pros: Easy to use, actually works
Cons: still looking for one
Grades Used: 1st- 2ndI give this book a high rating, because now that my youngest is 16, this is one curriculum they have had fond memories of using!It is one book I am saving for using with grandchildren.Several other reviewers are accurate in their descriptions of how 100 Lessons works. When my girls were finished with the lesson, there were several stacks of library books and a set of Pathway readers to choose from. We also used Samuel Blumenfield’s Alpha Phonics for extra phonics instruction.I think a huge key to using this book and any curriculum, is waiting until your child is ready to learn. 2 of my girls were 6, the other, 7 1/2. My youngest was 3/4 of the way through the book, when she began reading simple readers. (I don’t think she ever finished 100 Easy Lessons.)Today, they are all avid readers and do very well when reading aloud.I have always felt 100 Easy Lessons took the “mystery” out of learning to read and gave them a good foundation.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by melissaFebruary 22, 2012Pros: I really like this book, i’ve tried many and always come back to this one. my children are not early readers so its quite a process for us and everything you need is right there
Cons: it’s not amazingly fun but face it learning to read is hard work, at least in our family. I have found that it is more fun to teach , it to 2 children together even if the second child isn’t quite ready.
Grades Used: all, we are late bloomersI recomend this book mostly for ease of use and cost!
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by MaryFebruary 16, 2012Pros: cost, effectiveness, ease of use
Cons: a little dry
Grades Used: Pre-K, K, 2ndI love 100 Easy Lessons, because it works!
I have used it with two of my children who were struggling to read, one of whom came out of the public school after undergoing intense sight reading instruction.I also loaned it to a friend whose child had fallen below grade level in reading in her 2nd grade public school class. Her mom tutored her with 100 Easy Lessons over one summer. When school started up again, the reading specialist sent home a note saying that she was amazed at the progress she saw, and that her daughter was now easily reading above her grade level.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by MELINDA STOGSDILLFebruary 11, 2012Pros: HELPED MY DAUGHTER TO FINALLY BE ABLE TO LEARN TO READ
Grades Used: K,1STI USED THIS BOOK FOR MY DAUGHTER THAT WAS STUGGLING WITH LEARNING TO READ AND WITH THE REPETION IN THE BOOK SHE LEARNED TO READ SUCCESSFULLY AND FELT VERY PROUD OF HERSELF FOR HER ACCOMPLISHMENT.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by DonnaMarch 31, 2011Pros: Inexpensive, easy for some students
Cons: not interesting,
Grades Used: k, 1st3 kids, it worked for first born daughter. She did not need to go to the end of the book, (thank goodness) but was off and running about 2/3 way through. Son came next and did not click with him. Tried next daughter and it helped a bit.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by SallyNovember 12, 2010Pros: Ease of use
Grades Used: K4-5I tried this book with two of my children and neither one of them liked it. I like the fact that they practice handwriting on the sound that they learned for that lesson. I lent the book out and haven’t missed it through three other children learning to read.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by PatiNovember 12, 2010Pros: very inexpensive, fast results to a 2nd grade reading level
Cons: silly stories, but my children loved reading them
Grades Used: PreK-1stI have found a need to always test each child for a true readiness to learn reading. If they are not ready after a few lessons of testing, we come back and start again at a later date. No matter what, I have found the initial excitement wears off after several lessons and it is work to press through until they regain the excitement of really reading which does not take long when you consider it is only 100 lessons.Scripted lessons give consistent results. Children learn to hear and speak individual sounds of words which is actually vitally important to reading and spelling. They also learn to blend correctly and hear the sounds and then say them “fast” to pronounce the word sounded out right from the beginning. They learn to rhyme. I always play the sounding out “game” in the car while we are in the early part of the book. It really helps reinforce what they are learning and passes the time profitably.Each lesson ends with sounds writing which gives a hands on element to the lessons. We always do this with a dry erase lap board which has beginner writing lines on one side. We got it a walmart years ago.Both my daughters are above grade level readers with excellent expression. This is the evaluation of our homeschool overseer, and observation of many friends. My son is just beginning the book this year and doing well.Phonics Pathways is an excellent follow up to this book for more nitty gritty phonics “rules”.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by AmyNovember 9, 2010Pros: Easy to use
Grades Used: Pre-K to KI started this with both my sons in pre-k and quit each time because they were not ready. We finally made it through with my oldest who is now in 3rd grade and a great reader. My current Kindergartner and I have taken a break from it with plans to return. It is just moving too fast for him. He cannot make it through one lesson in the 20 minute time limit. We tried to break it into 2 20 minutes sessions, but he was still struggling. I do plan to return to it when I think he is ready. I think the book is a great start to phonics. The boys do love the pictures and funny stories.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Andrea HalsteadNovember 9, 2010Pros: Works, good price
Cons: not very fun, slow for some students
Grades Used: prek,KI have used this for my three oldest kids. Each child is different. My oldest did great with it and was reading by lesson 50. We breezed through it. My 2nd we started it about three times and then I just gave up using it with her. I think it helped her a little bit get how to sound out words but she pretty much taught herself. My third, we are using it now. This is about the 3rd time we stated it but she loves it now. I stated when she was 4 like my other 2 but she got bored and didn’tlike it. now she is 5 and she loves doing it. She is very excited to be reading stories. Sometimes though if it gets long or if she is getting a little bored or has worked really hard we split the lesson in two and do the story reading the next day. That makes the lessons not too long. The directions say that it should only take 20 min but sometimes it takes uslonger so splitting it is good for us.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by carrie walshNovember 9, 2010Pros: it works!
Cons: hard to find distar system materials to go to the next level
my child has dyslexia.I was desperate,everything else I tried failed.I felt the price was hefty for 1 book on our buget but decided to try it anyway.My heart sank when I received it because I thought there was no way it would work but IT DID!
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Terra BonellaNovember 7, 2010Pros: Well scripted, easy to teach
Cons: moves slowly, boring
Grades Used: PreK-1stThis did not work for my son, after the first 10 lessons he was hopelessly bored and didn’t want to learn to read! The illustrations are funny but it moves too slowly.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Tiffani CrewsNovember 5, 2010Pros: easy for teacher
Cons: not fun, very boring and repetative
Grades Used: kWe tried this because it was cheep and everyone recommended it. But it just wasn’t fun. Neither my son nor I enjoyed it one bit, so it didn’t last. But that doesn’t mean it wont work for you because many of my friends have used it successfully with their kids.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Hope WhiteNovember 5, 2010Pros: *****
Grades Used: N/AAlthough it has been quite a few years since I used this curriculum, I keep the book for my grandkids. When I wasn’t homeschooling my children, I was using other programs to add to their education. When my son was in “pre-1st”, the public school told me he wasn’t learning to read. I taught my son to read in this book within two months time of working on it daily. It is thorough and complete in my estimation of teaching the sounds of each letter and starting where a child can make sense of their reading right away. It reminds me of how I was taught phonics in the 60s. This truly is a phonics program and works easily and well.
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by AngelaNovember 5, 2010Grades Used: KindergartenI have a kinesthetic learner, and he did not like this book. Everyone I knew told me this book was very easy to use and worked. Each time I tried it with my son, he would say “not again”. He got bored very easily with this book. I think it is basically for visual and auditory learners, definitely not kinesthetic!
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Sarah JacksonNovember 4, 2010Pros: systematic introduction
Grades Used: KindergartenWish I had used this with my older child, too. It has been amazing watching my younger son learn to read!
- Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons Review by Holly GarzaNovember 4, 2010Pros: It is very easy to use, It actually works, and it even includes a correction guide to help the child learn
Cons: it teaches Phonetically at first
Grades Used: First Grade (currently)I actually JUST wrote about this on my website and blog!It actually misspells things at first (meaning writing the words (and the Alphabet!) as they sound, not as they are really written) and then switches over to the correct method. I didn’t have much interest or want of using this type of curriculum since I am a firm believer of learning the correct way since the beginning, but as of now, we are only on lesson 12; and she has improved at least about 60% if I’d have to scale it for you in 2 weeks and only in about 20 minutes a day!!The book uses incorrect spelling that uses sounds that are read such as “mmmmm”for M, instead of saying M it’s called MMMMM.
The “letter” ssssssss (make the sssss sound) for S and so on. This altered orthography is a modified form of the standard long and short sounds of the alphabet.I found this system very, very useful right away, even after the first 3 lessons! She learns what sounds the letters make and make together after learning what each letter sounds like individually, this way she is learning to read the word through sounds instead of guessing (which she is slowly getting out of the habit of doing) what the word really is or associating it with a picture. It is the fundamentals of letter sounds that helps her to learn to read correctly so I’m hoping it continues to go well and I can get her out of that ‘guessing’ the word.
Like I said, this was my first time ever teaching a child to read, so I’m a complete newbie, but this book was perfect!
I had seen it recommended by so many people and so decided to try it out. I was pleased to find that the book is very reasonably priced!
Quick reasons why I love this curriculum:
- An effective method that will have your child reading quickly
- Open-and-go with no preparation needed
- A very inexpensive curriculum
- Teaches your child to read phonetically so that they learn to decode words they have never seen before
- Perfect for beginner homeschoolers with step-by-step instructions for parents
- Stories with pictures for your child to read
- Includes reading comprehension and discussion questions for each story
- Introduces sounds in a logical order that makes it easier on your child
- Comes with a pronunciation guide and a letter-writing chart for the parent’s reference
- An all-in-one curriculum that has everything you need to teach your child to read within one book
- Includes a book list at the end of the book with 20 books the child can continue with once they have finished their 100 lessons
- After completing the 100 lessons, your child can be reading on a solid second-grade level
Learn To Read In 100 Lessons
What does a lesson involve?
The lessons at the start of the book are focused on teaching individual letter sounds, blending two sounds together, and then reading three-letter words (CVC words). Each lesson gets progressively harder. Your child will be learning more and more sounds, longer words, and will start reading stories that are a few sentences long.
While sounding out each letter or word the child places their finger on the dot underneath it and moves their finger along the line. I love this method because it means that the child will learn how to sound out the letters correctly, and will easily learn how to blend letters together.
Part of the method also includes reading a sound or word ‘the slow way’ and then ‘the fast way’ which helps children progress from saying individual sounds to saying a whole word in one go.
Once your child has mastered all of the individual letter sounds, they will be introduced to some of the common diagraphs. They have to read longer words, and the stories get longer and longer.https://www.instagram.com/p/CFYiI7Fhwj2/
By the end of the book, the lessons include reading a few words that will then appear within the story for that lesson. The stories near the end of the book are now an entire page long, with smaller text. Each story usually includes a picture, and there are questions to check reading comprehension and for discussion of the story.
I really like the order in which the book introduces sounds and words, it makes a lot of sense! It makes it so much easier for the child when everything is introduced in a logical order. This is also why I love Bob books so much, and why Bob books and Teach Your Child to Read go so well together.
How To Use 100 Easy Lessons
How much prep work is involved?
Other than reading the introduction, there is really no prep work involved for the parent. This curriculum is truly open-and-go, with step-by-step instructions. Even what the parent needs to say to the child is written down and clearly laid out in red text.
Each lesson has the same format, so after a few lessons you get familiar with it, and you can breeze through it. After a few lessons, I didn’t even need to read out the instructions to my daughter anymore, because she would know exactly what to do.
There is a pronunciation guide for the parent included in the introduction which can be quite helpful. For the vowels which have two different sounds, a symbol above the letter will show this difference. After your child begins to read well, the symbols are no longer included and your child will be able to read without them.
In the introduction is also a letter writing chart, which shows the correct formation for writing each of the letters.
If your child has never done any writing before, I recommend finding some wipe-clean books or other worksheets where your child can trace lines and work on their pen control.
It’s a good idea to help your child to gain a good pen grip right from the start.
How Long Does A Lesson Take?
Each lesson only took us about ten minutes, though this will depend on your child. Even by the end of the book, where my daughter was reading an entire page of smaller text, the lessons still only took ten minutes because by then my daughter had become a faster reader.https://www.instagram.com/p/B_TiIXXJ67h/
Do I Need Additional Resources?
All you need for this curriculum is simply the book itself, and a notebook so that your child can practice writing the letters specified in each lesson.
However, if you would like to use additional workbooks for practicing letter tracing, formation, and writing, then they would be a great additional resource.
My daughter Galilee used the book ‘Preschool Writing’ by Jady Alvarez to practice her letter writing. We found this to be a great resource to go alongside Teach Your Child to Read.
Jady Alvarez also has ‘Preschool Beginner Math’ and ‘Preschool Literacy’ which my daughter loved, and I have just re-purchased these three books for my youngest daughter.
I used Bob books as another additional resource. Bob books also teach children how to read phonetically. The child will learn to decode and sound out any word they come across and then read words they have never encountered before.
Each set includes ten short readers.
I bought sets 1-5, as well as the Kindergarten Sight Words set that came with 30 flashcards.
Dash Into Learning
Other great beginner reader books are Dash into Learning books, or check out what is available at your local library.
Before we even started the curriculum I made some letter flashcards to help my daughter memorize the letter sounds. This is not necessary, but it will help your child progress faster. I went through all the sounds of the alphabet everyday with her, and she soon had them memorized within a few weeks.
I also made some word family flashcards to get my daughter familiar with words that have the same ending. This was great because instead of sounding each individual letter out, she moved on to saying the whole word and not having to sound things out at all.https://www.instagram.com/p/B_eC0duJhO0/
I picked up some sight word flashcards for a few dollars and started going over these several times a week to help her memorize them.
Sight words include words such as ‘the’ or ‘buy’ that cannot be read phonetically, and must be memorized instead. They also include high-frequency words that your child will encounter often, such as ‘it’ or ‘on’.
Those are some of the resources I used alongside Teach Your Child to Read, but like I said before, all you really need is just the book itself and some paper.
It’s up to you what else you want to add in to each lesson, whether it be games, worksheets or hands-on activities.
100 Easy Lessons Review
While being a very effective reading curriculum, it does lack somewhat in the fun and engaging department. The method is so effective though, that I can overlook the fact that it can be a little dull.
The book is in black and white (apart from the red text) and the pictures are pretty small and simple, but this just means that the book is that much cheaper!
The stories were interesting enough to keep my daughter engaged and reading, though not overly exciting! Most of the stories have a picture to go with it, which my daughter was always interested to have a look at.
Overall, despite being a little dull, the book is laid out well, is clear, and easy to follow.
What Age Should I Start?
The answer to this question will depend entirely on your child and their needs. I started going through this book with my daughter when she was 3 and a half, and she was reading words within the first two weeks of using it!
We’ve taken a little over a year to get through it, we’ve taken a few breaks, and we’ve added in lots of fun additional resources to keep learning fun and engaging.
If your child is craving knowledge and has a desire to learn, then I would encourage you to start. If they aren’t interested at all and don’t want to participate, then I wouldn’t force it.
After all, you don’t want them to start off by hating reading! You want them to love reading! Do other learning activities in the meantime and try the curriculum again at a later date.
How To Keep Motivated
A great way to keep your child motivated is by having a sticker chart. At the end of every lesson, your child can choose a sticker to place on the number of the lesson they completed that day.
You may also want to include a special treat after your child accomplishes a certain amount of lessons (say every 10 lessons or even at the end of each week), and a treat for finishing the book! I’m not against giving my children incentives and rewarding their hard work 🙂
I never had a sticker chart for my oldest, as it just never entered my mind, but I wish I would have! I have since come across this idea a few times on Instagram, and it’s such a fun idea that I will for sure be using it with my youngest.
Teach Your Child To Read In 100 Easy Lessons
Hopefully, by now I have answered all of the questions you may have about this curriculum, but if not, feel free to leave a comment down below.
I hope this review of Teach Your Child To Read In 100 Easy Lessons has been helpful, and that I have given you a few good ideas as to how you can get your child reading!