Beginning Reading with the Montessori Pink Series

Suddenly, we have a reader!  If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably been celebrating that with me for a few months now.  I’m finally getting around to putting together all of our Pink Series materials in one post so you can see how L did it!

We began last summer with these Montessori Pink Series CVC Writing Templates [click the photo to go straight to that post].  L had not yet mastered all of her Sandpaper Letters, but she was clearly ready for something a bit more difficult.

Once she was pretty comfortable with those, it was time to bring out the Pink Series Cards with our movable alphabet [click the photo to go straight to that post].  We began with just the photo cards, as I meticulously arranged them into groups and invited L to build each word with the movable alphabet.  We slowly sounded out each word together to find the beginning sound, the sound in the middle, and the sound at the end.

L flew through all of our photo cards, so I added the word cards — and boy was I surprised when she instantly was able to match the word cards to the correct photo!  She zoomed through them all, so I began creating our Blue Series Cards — but L couldn’t wait.  She was desperate to read a real book.

So first I found these Pink Series phrase cards [Pink Reading Level #5] and made them into a book for her.  I just cut out each card and stapled them all together to look like a real book.  Because these contained whole phrases, there were a few words included that were not phonetic CVC words like all those L had come into contact with before.  For that reason, I made some Sight Word Cards [you can download them for free HERE], and pulled out just the ones we needed to read the phrases.

So far, the only ones I’ve presented to her have been “I,” “the,” “a,” and “and.”

I noticed that L was looking at the pictures in the phrase book and then trying to figure out what the words said.  Using context clues is a great tool for beginning readers — but L wasn’t using it to read.  She was using context clues to make wild guesses about what the phrases said.  I knew we needed something without pictures, but I couldn’t find anything that was just right.  So I made my own!  You can download a free copy of my Pink Series Sentence Strips HERE.  I printed mine on pink cardstock and then cut each sentence into its own strip and put them all in a bucket.

The weekend after I first presented the sentence strips, we went to our public library and found some Bob Books.  L opened one up and began to read.  And that was that.