Wow! That is ALL I can think of to say about this program! I like what I have seen so far. I have heard wonderful things about AAR and also AAS (All About Spelling).
I wasn’t sure what to expect as I am still new in the homeschool realm and ordered this with only seeing the few sample pages. I really, really like the scripted planned lessons. I am really busy with 5 kids 5 & under (one being a nursing infant) so I do not have a lot of spare time planning every single subject. Ziggy’s lines are even scripted. In the back of the Teacher’s Guide it has suggestions for hands-on activities you can use to help children with learning their letters, talks about the alphabet song and gives an alternative way to sing it, and references. The book does has an index and some pages pages that notes can be written in.
The student book consists of the alphabet pages, both upper and lower cases as well as sounds of the letters pages. They are perforated so they can be taken out as needed. On the back of every page are the instructions and any supplies you need. A quick glance through and all of the items appear to be things you probably have around the house like yarn, paint, crayons, etc.
Part of the student materials are the picture cards and letter sound cards. There are a lot and it seemed to take forever to tear them apart and put them in their correct spot in the box. I also had three sets to do and it took me a little more than a hour and a half to do all of them. There are review boxes that are available for purchase but I decided against buying them and bought 3 $2 index card holders from a big box store for the cards. Now I am wondering if I should have purchased the review box. They are a tight squeeze in the index box and the cards have not even been laminated. Reading reviews I have found that most moms decided against laminating the cards due to the adults are the only ones handling the cards. I have decided to laminate them in case one or more of the kids happen to get into them. They will have a fighting chance. I wish there was an option to buy the cards laminated because the difference in cost would be well worth it to me. I suspect I am looking at another couple of hours minimum laminating and cutting out the laminated cards.
I am not sure what to do with the alphabet charts right now. Wall space is at a premium and I do have another alphabet chart hanging on the wall but the AAR chart would not fit there. For now the AAR charts will stay folded up.
There are two hardcover books, ‘The Zigzag Zebra’ and ‘Lizard Lou’. They are simple black and white pages that have short rhymes that go along with every lesson.
I did purchased Ziggy the Zebra (available separate or as part as the deluxe package). When Sweet Pea pulled him out of the box she giggled with glee. 🙂 He is very well made and worth the money to purchase him!
I suspect Sweet Pea will breeze right through the first half of the Pre-Reading level. She knows her alphabet and is ready to learn the sounds. Right now the goal for her is one lesson per day. Peanut and Lil Bit are still learning the Alphabet and will do one lesson per week. I will revisit this schedule after the first six weeks and go from there. I am planning on doing more of the activities in the back with the two younger ones.
- Lessons planned out
- Can take the lessons at the child’s pace
- Has additional activity ideas in the back of the teacher book
- Ziggy is a HUGE hit with the kids
- The student pages are perforated for easy removal
- I wish the cards came laminated (like the divider cards)
I will add additional reviews as the school year continues with how the kids are doing with AAR.
Have a blessed day!