Upper Elementary Reading Curriculum

Does anyone have a good curriculum that covers Reading Comprehension skills? My 8 year old is an above-level reader so we don’t need to focus on decoding at all. I also don’t need anything for grammar because we love using First Language Lessons. I’m looking specifically for topics like point of view, author’s purpose, making inferences, etc. We have used several great literature unit studies but I would really like something that follows a Scope and Sequence over a number of years so that we don’t have gaps. Thanks!!


I have never used it, personally, but I looked at the online samples and the BJU Reading materials looked really thorough in the Reading Comprehension area. They aren’t super inexpensive, but again, the comprehension type questions seemed strong. I also have an 8 year old who is a strong reader, so I know what you’re facing! :slightly_smiling: I will be following this thread to see other suggestions for sure!

Thanks for getting back so quickly! I hoping to find something that uses authentic literature as opposed to a basal reader type book like BJU but BJU definitely has the scope and sequence that I’m looking for.

I’ll be following along also. I have an advanced 7 year old reader - reading and decoding aren’t an issue. However, she needs comprehension work - not in comprehending what she’s reading, but making deeper connections and answering deeper questions. I’ll also be following this thread in hopes that there are many different suggestions. :slightly_smiling:

@alimaree Yes, I agree, I also prefer to use real books as opposed to reader books written for reading programs. It’s one of the reasons we’re switching our entire school program next year and I can’t wait! :smile: All About Reading has been the only program we’ve used so far that has used readers but my daughter has outgrown the levels I think. We’re getting ready to use Level 3 starting next week but I am going to be interested to see if it’s still as intriguing to her as the first two levels were. She is going through several chapter books a week from the library. @triton17 posted some wonderful comprehension questions awhile back and how she uses them on the jumbo craft sticks (thank you @triton17!!). We did as she suggested and now, when my daughter finishes a book, she draws two sticks from the jar and answers the questions about the book she just finished (sometimes orally, sometimes written). If you do a search on here for “popsicle” the thread will come up and you can scroll down to where @triton17 listed the questions! (You can also read her post on that thread on how to use them which is above the list of questions.) The title of the thread was “Not teaching formal reading?” I hope this might also be helpful!

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Thanks @Forchristandkids I was going to mention that post also, but forgot :slight_smile: Thanks for doing it for me! We still use the sticks each week, and they work great. Unfortunately my daughter digs her heels in when I ask her to WRITE the response… she always just wants to verbalize them to me. You mentioned that you will be changing your school program next year. Can you explain how? I don’t like readers/ books meant for reader programs, and my daughter also reads numerous chapter books per week. I’d love to know what other people such as yourself are doing. Thanks!

@triton17 We were just using the sticks this morning :slightly_smiling: So thank you again for that list! It has been very helpful! Yes, we have been using individual subjects for the past 4 years, but next year we are switching to integrated learning through the Trail Guide to Learning program which uses real books and is history/geography based but covers all subjects except for Math. I have posted on here a few times about it so forgive me for being redundant :blush: I love that it will put us on a track for the next several years and that it is written by educators with a strong background in education, homeschool, and in developing language arts materials as well (one of the authors also worked on developing Learning Language Arts Through Literature). We will be adding in a few other things, but we’ll only supplement subject areas if we see a need. Most people who have used it stress the importance of trusting the system, so I’m going to try to do that as much as possible. I’ve researched it to the hilt and can’t wait to get started. I’m just waiting for my younger son to be ready in the fall, although they are developing a wonderful K-2 extension program which should be available very soon. I’m looking forward to the literature basis in this program. We are going to add in the middle school level books as additional books for my daughter since most of them are age-appropriate for 4th grade and up so that she will have extra reading if she moves quickly through the main books in the program.

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In my own research I found this resource through IEW and the Center for Literature–>Reading Roadmaps. It may be exactly what I’m looking for so it might help some of you too! It is a Scope and Sequence for literature for grades K-12.

(It corresponds to their Teaching the Classics seminar.)

They also have Ready Readers which is more of a curriculum/teachers manual.


Thank you so much for sharing those links! So far we’ve only used Progeny Press Study Guides, but I’m very interested in this. :slight_smile:

Thank you @GC123 for mentioning this resource! Once again I am thankful for your resource tip!! I have not seen these study guides before and am glad to look into them for my 3rd grader who is reading everything in sight it seems. :smile:


I have a Kindergartener and a first grader who are both reading way above grade level so I was having the same problem. Their comprehension seems fine based on having them tell me abut the (many) books they are reading for leisure. But I was concerned that they weren’t learning the vocabulary like “main idea”, “inferences” etc. Somehow I stumbled upon Daily Reading Practice. It’s a workbook where they read the same passage every day for a week and learn all those things I was worried about ;). We started just before Christmas and I initially put them both in second grade but just ordered the first grade one for my K, mostly just because the first task is to write a 2-3 sentence summary and that seems a bit beyond her at this point. She needs to ease into that more :wink:


ETA: I love the idea of those positive sticks, and I have tried something similar in the past with just asking them questions about what they are reading. However, I have never been consistent with it and they read SO MUCH that I feel like I can’t keep up. So for me, adding this little workbook into our day is giving me some peace of mind :slight_smile:

Also I initially ordered the teacher’s manual but as far as I can tell, it is not necessary at all, at least not at this level :). Let me know if you have any questions.

Oh, how fun! I hope she enjoys using them, they are very well put together! :slightly_smiling:

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I am glad you mentioned the BJU reading. I looked at it and really liked it. I think I am going to add this to my curriculum list for next year. Thanks!

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I just looked at this and like it very much. I will either be doing this or the BJU one mentioned earlier. Thanks!

I’m so glad that was helpful! I have found so many good resources here from mentions by other homeschoolers and I am always so grateful when someone mentions something I haven’t heard of or thought of before too! :smile: It’s how I found my curriculum for next year too!! Lol! Good luck! I hope you find something that works really well for you!

I’ve used curriculum by Heart of Dakota called Drawn into the Heart of Reading. I liked that it encourages you to try different genres of literature (like biographies) and you can choose any book you want. It covers things like character, story sequence, plot, etc. Here’s a link: http://www.heartofdakota.com/drawn-into-packages.php

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We use BJU Reading second grade and I am impressed with the stories and their student work text! My daughter dreaded the thought of adding it in, but it is now one of her favorite subjects! It is very well put together!

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I’ve been debating this as well. I was leaning towards BJU, but I also want real literature. We are going to try HOD Drawn Into the Heart of Reading.