Pros: Reinforces concepts, introduces difficult words and gets my child ready to read the daily story.
Cons: Not for the current BJU Phonics and English curriculum
Before you rush out to buy the Phonics And Reading 1 Teacher's Helper Flip Chart, I have to be very clear about what I'm reviewing and what this is. This is the Phonics and Reading Flip chart that accompanies the older version of BJU's first grade reading program. My flip chart says copyright 1997 on it. There is an English Visuals Homeschool Flip Chart that goes with the newer version of Phonics and English 1 that is currently sold at the Bob Jones site. Older versions of the teacher's manuals and student editions can still be found at places like Ebay and Half Price Books, and this flip chart goes with those. Or if you want to put together your own program, this will work for that too.
The Flip Chart
This flip chart covers 165 lessons, although there are a few lessons that you don't use the flip chart with. It has a sturdy cardboard front and a sturdy cardboard back to it, with a spiral top, so you can set it upright at the kitchen table (or wherever you homeschool) and both you and your child can look at it together at the same time.
There are several main things that this book covers. It gives practice with the service words (sight words), introduces more difficult words that might be part of the student reader for the day, includes short stories where the teacher reads one line (from the teacher's manual) and the student reads one line from the flip chart, and includes some punctuation and grammar. There are some lists of words that reinforce a concept touched upon in the lesson, such as open syllable words in lesson 82, but there is another flip chart that has lists of word families that covers more of those word lists.
Service words - service words are included throughout most of the book. They are words that your child should memorize because they either don't follow any normal patterns, or perhaps they are much more difficult than the words normally covered at that level. There are usually one or two service words per lesson, and towards the end of the book, fewer service words are listed.
Story vocabulary - The BJU program is set up so that on most days, your child reads a story or part of a story out of their student reader. Most of the stories contain a word that is more difficult than the words they are used to. The Teacher's Helper Flip Chart includes these words and then uses it in a sentence.
Short story - The short story is usually pretty easy for my child to read, mainly because it's a back and forth interaction between the teacher and the student. The teacher's manual might instruct the teacher to say "Where is the band?" and the student reads from the flip book "Here is the band." If you don't have the teacher's manual, it wouldn't be too difficult to come up with questions to ask before the child reads the response in the flip book.
Grammar - BJU's old program combines reading, phonics, and English all in one book, and so there are also grammar readings included... mostly towards the end of the book when there is less emphasis on blending words, and more emphasis on phonics rules. Some of the grammar covered in this book is sentence punctuation, capitalization, contractions, synonyms, and action words.
There are a few other items included in this book in some lessons, like the months of the year or vocabulary definitions, but they are only mentioned in small listings.
Not all topics are included with every lesson.
I Like This Book
I like this book. The BJU Phonics and Reading Program can take a lot of time to accomplish in a day (about an hour sometimes), but the flip chart is easy to use and makes other parts of the program easier. It reinforces difficult words and helps my daughter get ready for reading the story. My daughter usually doesn't struggle with passages in the flip chart.
The book is not colorful or fancy, but it serves it's purpose. It is also made to last. In fact, I'd use it again with my son if I could only find another blank Phonics and Vocabulary workbook, since the publisher doesn't sell them any more.