Other than phonics workbooks, I have never really purchased a reading curriculum for my kids. You can read my first post on this topic here -it’s an overview of how we do reading instruction.

Gresham (almost 5) is really coming along with reading! He can sound out most three letter words. We are starting to get into blends now (tr-, br-, ch, etc.) and words that do not follow the phonics rules. Today, we made our own book to practice the word “some.” Many of the words in this book we made are too hard for Gresham, but he can “read” them because he helped me make the story. He may pick up a few of those words as sight words, but my main goal was for him to learn the word “some.”

Hard at work coloring the illustrations!

We named our book “Dino Dinner.” (We are well into our second year of dinosaur obsession! Dinos are a way of life for him – he is usually either pretending to be one or flipping through books about dinosaurs.)

Here is the story:

Triceratops eats some leaves.

T-rex eats some meat.

Triceratops goes running when he hears T-rex’s feet!

Long necks drink some water.

Pteranodon eats some fish.

Stegosaurus eats some plants; he doesn’t even need a dish!

Feel free to copy our story word for word if it would help your child! Homemade books are very motivating because you can make the story and illustrations about things your child likes.

Here are some other ideas off the top of my head:

To teach the word “like” – “I like pizza, I like bananas, I like… (whatever your child likes)

To teach color words – “Here is a red ________, Here is a blue __________,” etc.

A book about fall – “In fall we see pumpkins, In fall we see leaves, etc.” (Oooh, I like that one. I think we’ll be doing that one because Gresham already knows those words, except the fall vocabulary.)

A book with different textures – glue on pieces of sandpaper, smooth cloth, cotton balls, etc. Then write “This feels smooth, This feels rough,” etc.

Make your own “Brown Bear, Brown Bear” book

What ideas do you have? Add a comment with more homemade book ideas!


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  1. Esther Irish Sep 14, 2011

    Wow I would not have known where to begin with out a curriculum. The book looks super fun!


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