We’ve been using Reading Eggs for a long time! Off and on through the past ten years, and more often during the past year. I’ve used Reading Eggs for all three of my children as they’ve passed through those early years. My oldest two children learned to read so fast that they didn’t need Reading Eggs to learn to read – but they still enjoyed it. My youngest child is still in the middle of learning to read, so she has gotten a lot of use out of Reading Eggs. She’s a just bit “ahead” of where she’d be if she were tested and put in a level in a public school first-grade classroom. I taught first grade and I’ve taught many kids to read, and Reading Eggs matches very well with the way I like teaching reading.
There are many levels available:
As naturally as possible. I like to allow children to have fun, enjoy learning, and develop reading skills at their pace.
Do I ever get impatient with this?
I have the luxury of allowing my own children to develop at their pace, and I love that. My youngest child will probably end up using Reading Eggs for at least two years because I allow her to use it as an enjoyable time that she views as pure fun. However, as I’ve seen with kids who are allowed to develop reading naturally, they sometimes make sudden jumps in ability – so I just don’t know how long my youngest child will be at a certain level.
If you want your child to progress in a delight-directed way, then you can allow your child as much unsupervised playtime on Reading Eggs as you’d want.
Here is a video showing how my child uses Reading Eggs in a delight-directed manner to learn to read:
She is all over the place in this video. Can you see how much she has used it and enjoys it? She’s got all her favorites figured out. Even though she has used it on her own a lot, she has not been able to guess-and-click her way beyond any level that she has not mastered. She’s been using this for close to a year and is not bored with it. That’s pretty great. I took over an hour of video of her playing around on Reading Eggs over the past few weeks and she never used the program like she does when I give her an assignment (which is easy, I just tell her to do the next lesson). In this video she had been partly through an assignment and then had to exit and didn’t want to repeat the beginning of the assignment again. She’ll get back to it and enjoy it but she wasn’t into repeating that part for this video. Such is life when you are doing delight-directed reading…
…but you don’t have to stick to delight-directed! There are more options, which brings us to….
If you want something more linear, Reading Eggs provides a very structured scope and sequence. This is a screenshot that shows the depth that you can cover with Reading Eggs.
In order for me to use Reading Eggs in a more linear fashion, I need to direct my 6-year-old to which lesson she needs to complete each day. So far, my youngest child is not a very early reader like her siblings, but she is just fine, so I haven’t resorted to assigning Reading Eggs lessons very often and instead I usually let her play. Clearly, letting her play with Reading Eggs, along with the other things I do, is working.
Even if you’re diligent about assigning Reading Eggs lessons, follow it up with real books and some written material, and lots of enjoyment together of reading and writing.
Enter the new Reading Eggs workbooks. My youngest child is not a fan of workbooks or worksheets and I wasn’t sure what she would think of the Reading Eggs workbook. WELL. SHE LOVES IT. I think it’s because of all the unstructured time I’ve let her play on Reading Eggs; she associated Reading Eggs with fun and play. When she saw the characters and the cover she was soooo excited to do some pages, and she has kept at it. The pages are full color and very well designed.
The content of the Reading 1 workbook is based around phonics, taught in word families. The order of sound introduction is a bit different than some phonics workbooks because not all of a particular sound is taught at once. For example, “ay” and “a_e” both make the long a sound, and most phonics systems that I’ve used would have all the long a spellings introduced together. Reading Eggs doesn’t do that, instead splitting them up into different groups, and using a lot of blends and word families like “ace” and “ake” rather than just using only the generic spellings. I like it because it’s very explicit.