Power Tools for Literacy: Accelerated Phonics, Syllables and Morphemes
300 reproducible lessons, 428 pages, 8½ in x 11 in
by Verena C. Rau, MA, RS
The 300 systematic, engaging lessons in “Power Tools for Literacy” are aligned with the Common Core Reading Standards for Foundational Skills. Become an expert in teaching phonics in the context of syllable patterns and showing students how to analyze or chunk words into phonemes, syllables, base words, prefixes, suffixes, Latin roots, and Greek elements. Mastering and blending these phonograms and morphemes enables students to decode and spell one-syllable and polysyllabic words with ease and accuracy.
A report by The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development states, "For those children who are at risk for reading failure, highly direct and systematic instruction to develop phonemic awareness and phonics skills is required." In keeping with this principle, Power Tools for Literacy uses an Orton-Gillingham approach proven successful with struggling readers, students with learning differences or dyslexia, and English learners.
Designed for grades 2-12, “Power Tools for Literacy” lends itself to individual or group instruction. The look and feel of the lessons is appropriate for any age group; material that appears tailored to young children has been avoided.
Power Tools for Literacy uses a variety of engaging activities to cover these key topics and more:
Short and long vowels with consonant blends and digraphs
R-controlled vowels, diphthongs, and vowel teams
7 types of syllables
Rules for dividing polysyllabic words
Reading, spelling, and defining 50 common suffixes
Spelling rules for adding suffixes to base words
Vocabulary enrichment by reading, spelling, and defining 50
Accented and unaccented syllables
Free and bound morphemes
Latin roots and Greek combining forms
Weekly spelling lists that incorporate high frequency sight
The unique aspect of Power Tools for Literacy is the use of syllable codes. Each type of syllable has a code abbreviation. Using codes in conjunction with multisensory principles reinforces the structure of previously covered phonograms/morphemes and builds in review to achieve automaticity.
Power Tools for Literacy is only one component of an effective reading program. It should be coupled with a literature-based curriculum, accompanied by intensive vocabulary development.
"Power Tools for Literacy breaks down an otherwise confusing reading and spelling process into a meaningful, manageable, and completely logical system. The coding component allows my students to recognize word structures, making word analysis automatic. Consequently, my students' reading and spelling functions improve dramatically, confidence levels soar, and overall school performance is elevated. "
Beverly Clayton, Resource Specialist, grades 6 and 8
This is how a former student describes her experience with the program:
"Memorizing words never worked for me because I'm dyslexic. When I entered 6th grade, I was reading at the second grade level. Ms. Rau's method put forth the English language in a way that made sense to me. When I started high school, I was caught up to grade level and able to succeed in the regular curriculum." Sara H.Jones, Ph.D.
"I like it because the kids like it!"
Jacqui Albano, 6thgrade Resource Specialist
"The publication of this program provides much needed materials for students with learning disabilities and English learners. Power Tools has been a great asset to my teaching, is well laid out and user-friendly for both the teacher and the student."
Martha Ritchie, elementary special ed. teacher
"Before this instruction, my son never read for pleasure. Now he reads voraciously!"
Parent of a Seventh Grader
"My class of English learners wanted to do a lesson from Power Tools every day!"
Barbara Dahl, ESL Teacher