When I learned that I was on the list of people to review the Beehive Reader ($19.95) from All About Spelling, I thought, "What?!?" You see, our guys are in the Jr. High age-range. We've been out of beginning readers for a LONG time. But it's always fun getting a package in the mail, and this was no exception. I opened the All About Spelling padded envelope and found that I held a lovely little treasure. If your early-reader gets a copy of The Beehive Reader he or she will treasure it for years to come.
The book itself is sturdy and well-constructed. But when you open it, the pages are simply beautiful. Every page has a lovely shaded pencil sketch with the words framed to look as though they've been tacked onto the page. Here's a great sample page:
The reading itself is simple. There are 10 stories in the reader. The beginning stories all contain one-syllable words. This sometimes makes the stories stilted, but my boys learned to read using one-syllable readers. They felt as though they had accomplished something by reading a book all by themselves. They weren't worried about the fluidity of the sentences. They were reading! That is how the stories in this book are structured. About three-quarters of the way through the book a few two-syllable words made their way into the stories. And there's a really fun story that uses tongue-twisters.
Each page has a beautiful drawing such as the one shown to you above. I remember when I was teaching the boys how to read that we would "read" pictures to help us with the text. This reader gives you pictures on each page that are as "readable" as the text is charming. The pages are on quality paper that appears slightly grayed and aged and adds to the book's beauty.
If you've read my blog in the past, you know that I reviewed the All About Spelling program for level 1 and level 2. This reader is meant to go along with the spelling program. I think I may have read The Behive Reader with our sons a year or two before beginning the spelling program. But I certainly would have resurrected the reader when we launched the spelling program later.
If you're in the market for a lovely little reader for your beginning student, look into The Beehive Reader. It's a book that will become a treasured keepsake well-after your child has gone into more advanced books.
All About Spelling has a very thorough spelling curriculum available on their website. You may also get your copy of The Beehive Reader there. If you would like to contact All About Spelling, do so here. And do read the other reviews of fellow crew-members here.