Ever since I read Erica’s reviews of AAR & AAS, I’ve wanted to try them. I think that the price for AAS is doable for our family, but I can’t get over the fact that the AAR grade level kits are $100 or more. For those who have used AAR, do you feel that it’s worth the cost? Have you bought it new from All about Learning, or did you find yours used or on sale? My family cannot afford to add an extra $100 per year onto our homeschool costs, but I keep coming back to AAR as something I want my kids to try. Any thoughts?
I love AAR! My daughter was falling behind in reading in the public school. She had just started first grade when I pulled my kids out. I tried other curriculums, and was having very limited success. Then I came across AAR and started from the beginning of level 1. It made such a HUGE difference! We are almost done with level 2 now, and she is doing so great. She is back up to grade level as a second grader.
The great thing about AAR is how they go over all the rules of phonics, and in a fun way for the kids. I will be making some curriculum changes next year, but AAR is definitely not one of them!
Are your kids struggling with reading?
Honestly, my son isn’t old enough yet. haha. I just love spending time researching what we’d like to use some day. My son is almost 3, and he can already recognize all of his letters. We are currently going through the process of learning the letter sounds. He’s got A-D down so far. I am just thinking ahead to when he’s ready for reading. We’re using LOTW right now and planning to start Erica’s K4 curriculum in a year or so. I already know we’re not going to use the AAR pre-reading level because I cannot justify spending that much money during his preschool years, but I really love the concept of AAS and AAR and would love to add in AAR when he gets to Kindergarten. It just seems so expensive to me. I guess the big thing I’m wondering is if a “Reading curriculum” is really needed, or if the basics learned in Erica’s K4 curriculum are enough to get them started and continue from there with reading practice. I’m planning to use Heart of Dakota for our schooling, and in that there doesn’t really seem to be a specific reading curriculum recommended after phonics instruction. It just goes from Phonics instruction to an “Emerging Readers” book set, which is basically a set of books that the child is meant to read aloud to the parents, but there’s no actual reading instruction like in AAR.
Another thing I’ve wondered in the past… is Erica’s K4 curriculum meant to be a full-on Kindergarten curriculum (as in they can move to first grade after completing it) or is it geared more toward the 4 year old and another “older” Kindergarten curriculum would be needed for a 5 year old before moving to first grade?
And lastly (for now, hehe) is AAR level 1 meant to start in Kindergarten or first grade? Sorry for the many questions; I’m just trying to learn all that I can. Thanks so much for any advice that you have!
I will be private messaging you:)
Agreed! My son struggled with reading. I tried many other reading programs. He learned to read with All About Reading. It was worth every penny!
AAR is great. I have purchased mine new from the company. I have my husband make a copy of the resource book. When we are done i sell the curriculum on ebay. I have been watching for level 3 on ebay. Whenever you find them on ebay they sell for over $100. That may be a way to get some of your money back. They seem to sell quick and for a high price on ebay. You may want to check it out.
We use AAR also and are adding AAS in the fall when we start level 2 with AAR. I think it is worth the money! My daughter turned 4 in November and we are half way through level 1! I personally think you definitely need something else after the k4 curriculum before you go into 1st grade material.
We love AAR and were able to start right up with Level 1 with both of our kids when they were age 5 (we had done LOTW and other preschool work at home with them but did not do the AAR pre-reading level) and they both did great! By the end of Level 1 my daughter was testing as reading on a mid 5th grade level! And everything is reusable with only needing to repurchase an activity book for upcoming siblings later down the road (or keep it in mind for resale value of all of the other materials when you are done.) Highly, highly recommend!!!