Literacy. There are SO many different literacy programs. You can seriously get lost in the sea of options. Despite what curricula you use, sometimes a little extra reading practice is just what your student needs. That is why I was excited for the opportunity to review The Magic Stories by Allsaid & Dunn, LLC, publishers of The Reading Game and authors of the Wordly Wise series.
The Product: The Magic Stories
There are a total of 6 fun stories in this set, which are aimed to build reading confidence, comprehension, and fluency in second and third graders:
- The Magic Hole
- The Magic Ax
- The Magic Joke
- The Magic Hot Dog
- The Magic Boots
- The Magic Box
Each story is about 20 pages long and is accompanied by black and white illustrations for your student to color. The stories are fun and engaging and the word selections are a mixture of easy sight words, decodable words, and harder rule-breaking words. Each story has a list of 40 ‘rule-breakers’ at the back referred to as the “Naughty 40.” To help ensure success, these word can be studied and read before introducing the story to help the student create a familiarity with them.
The stories are in a downloadable PDF format for instant access and cost effectiveness. You may print out the stories or choose to read them on a device. The whole set can be purchased for $16.95 or each book can be purchased for $3.95 individually.
“Naughty Forty” Flashcards
Each story has a flashcard for each “Naughty Forty” word to practice before (or after) reading the story. Each card also has an example sentence to help with vocabulary comprehension.
Comprehension Worksheets and Maze
Four exercise are included that focuses on student comprehension and critical thinking:
- Complete a true/false maze game (pictured below)
- Finish sentences with information from the text
- Expand on concepts mentioned in the story
- Write a composition using related writing prompts.
Pre/Post Sight Word Assessment
Also included is a short assessment that will show how many of the “Naughty Forty” your student already knows before you begin. Then after the reading and exercises are completed, you can test again to show how many words the student has acquired and thus show progress!
From the website, you can download free record sheets for each book to test the fluency of your student’s reading:
This little set really hits most of the five components of literacy: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Because it targets second and third graders, students should already have a pretty good grasp of phonemic awareness, so the focus is more on the latter four. Of the five components of literacy, I find that fluency is the hardest to assess, so the fact that The Magic Stories provides a fluency test is a real bonus.
Overall, I was impressed with the organized, research-based approach found in The Magic Books Series. I love the simple assessments that allow me to rate and track my student’s progress in the different areas of literacy — particularly their fluency. It’s inexpensive, easy to follow, highly engaging (my kids love flash cards), and takes little prep time. I highly recommend it.
Have you used The Magic Stories with your student? How did you like it? How did they like it? I would love to hear about your experience in the comments below.
Till Next Time,