Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons


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With more than half a million copies in print, Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons is the definitive guide to giving your child the reading skills needed now for a better chance at tomorrow, while bringing you and your child closer together.

Is your child halfway through first grade and still unable to read? Is your preschooler bored with coloring and ready for reading? Do you want to help your child read, but are afraid you’ll do something wrong?

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons is a complete, step-by-step program that shows patents simply and clearly how to teach their children to read.

Twenty minutes a day is all you need, and within 100 teaching days your child will be reading on a solid second-grade reading level. It’s a sensible, easy-to-follow, and enjoyable way to help your child gain the essential skills of reading. Everything you need is here—no paste, no scissors, no flash cards, no complicated directions—just you and your child learning together. One hundred lessons, fully illustrated and color-coded for clarity, give your child the basic and more advanced skills needed to become a good reader.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780671631987
Publisher: Touchstone
Publication date: 06/28/1986
Pages: 395
Sales rank: 23,896
Product dimensions: 8.40(w) x 10.92(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Siegfried Engelmann is a professor of education at the University of Oregon, and has written many books on teaching, including Give Your Child a Superior Mind. He is the originator of Direct Instruction, the most successful approach to teaching, and he has developed more than fifty Direct Instruction programs.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1



1. (Point to m)I'm going to touch under this sound and say the sound. (Touch first ball of arrow. Move quickly to second ball. Hold two seconds.) mmmmmm. (Release point.)

2. Your turn to say the sound when I touch under it. (Touch first ball.)Get ready. (Move quickly to second ball. Hold.) "mmmmmm."

(To correct child saying a wrong sound or not responding:) The sound is mmmmmm. (Repeat step 2.)

3. (Touch first ball.)Again. Get ready. (Move quickly to second ball. Hold.) "mmmmmm." (Repeat three more times.)

4. (Point to s.)I'm going to touch under this sound and say the sound. (Touch first ball of arrow. Move quickly to second ball. Hold.) ssssss. (Release point.)

5. Your turn to say the sound when I touch under it. (Touch first ball.)Get ready. (Move quickly to second ball. Hold.) "ssssss."

(To correct child saying a wrong sound or not responding:) The sound is ssssss. (Repeat step 5.)

6. (Touch first ball.)Again. Get ready. (Move quickly to second ball. Hold.) "ssssss." (Repeat three more times.)


1. Let's play say-it-fast. My turn: motor (pause) boat. (Pause.) Say it fast. motorboat.

2. Your turn. Wait until I tell you to say it fast. motor (pause) boat. (Pause.) Say it fast. "motorboat." (Repeat step 2 until firm.)

(To correct child saying word slowly -- for example, "motor [pause] boat":) You didn't say it fast. Here's saying it fast: motorboat. Say that. "motorboat." Now let's do that part again. (Repeat step 2.)

3. New word. Listen: ice (pause) cream. (Pause.) Say it fast. "icecream."

4. New word. Listen: sis (pause) ter. (Pause.) Say it fast. "sister."

5. New word. Listen: ham (pause) burger. (Pause.) Say it fast. "hamburger."

6. New word. Listen: mmmeee. (Pause.)Say it fast. "me."

7. New word. Listen: iiifff. (Pause.)Say it fast. "if."

8. (Repeat any words child had trouble with.)


1. I'm going to say some words slowly, without stopping. Then you'll say them with me.

2. First I'll say am slowly. Listen: aaammm. Now I'll say me slowly. Listen: mmmeee. Now I'll say in slowly. Listen: iiinnn. Now I'll say she slowly. Listen: shshsheee.

3. Now it's your turn to say the words slowly with me. Take a deep breath and we'Il say aaammm. Get ready. "aaammm."

(To correct if child stops between sounds -- for example, "aaa [pause] mmm":) Don't stop. Listen. (Don't pause between sounds a and m as you say aaammm.) Take a deep breath and we'll say aaammm. Get ready. "aaammm." (Repeat until child responds with you.)

4. Now we'll say iiinnn. Get ready. "iiinnn." Now we'll say ooonnn. Get ready. "ooonnn."

5. Your turn to say words slowly by yourself. Say aaammm. Get ready. "aaammm." Say iiifff. Get ready. "iiifff." Say mmmeee. Get ready. "mmmeee." Good saying the words slowly.


1. Let's do the sounds again. See if you remember them. (Touch first ball for m,) Get ready. (Quickly move to second ball. Hold.) "mmmmmm."

2. (Touch first ball for s.) Get ready. (Quickly move to second ball. Hold.) "ssssss."


1. Let's play say-it-fast again. Listen: motor (pause) cycle. Say it fast. "motorcycle."

2. mmmeee. (Pause.) Say it fast. "me." iiifff. (Pause.) Say it fast. "if." shshsheee. (Pause.) Say it fast. "she."


(Note: Refer to each symbol by its sound, not by its letter name. Make horizontal rules on paper or a chalkboard about two inches apart. Separate writing spaces by spaces about one inch apart. Optionally, divide writing spaces in half with a dotted line:-----.)

1. See chart on page 24 for steps in writing m and s.) You're going to write the sounds that I write. You're going to write a sound on each line. I'll show you how to make each sound. Then you'll write each sound. Here's the first sound you're going to write.

2. Here's how you make mmm. Watch. (Make m at the beginning of first line. Start with a vertical line:

Then add the humps:

(Point to m.) What sound? "mmm." First you're going to trace the mmm that I made. Then you're going to make more of them on the line.

3. (Help child trace sound two or three times. Child is then to make three to five m's on top line. Help child if necessary. For each acceptable letter child makes, say:) Good writing mmm.

4. Here's how to make sss. Watch. (Make s at beginning of second line. Point to s.) What sound? "sss."

5. First you're going to trace the sss that I made. Then you're going to make more of them on the line. (Help child trace sound two or three times. Child is then to make three to five s's on second line. Help child if necessary. For each acceptable letter child makes, say:) Good writing sss.



1. (Point to m.) I'm going to touch under this sound and say the sound. (Touch first ball of arrow. Move quickly to second ball. Hold two seconds.) mmmmmm. (Release point.)

2. Your turn to say the sound when I touch under it. (Touch first ball.) Get ready. (Move quickly to second ball. Hold.) "mmmmmm."

(To correct child saying a wrong sound or not responding:) The sound is mmmmmm. (Repeat step 2.)

3. (Touch first ball.) Again. Get ready. (Move quickly to second ball. Hold.) "mmmmmm." (Repeat three more times.)

Copyright © 1983 by Siegfried Engelmann

Customer Reviews

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Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 64 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought this book on the recommendation of a friend - she was right, it was fantastic. My son, who was slow to speak, was reading by age 4 1/2. It was so fun for both of us & as a working mother, I was so grateful to have the experience of teaching him this- perhaps the most critical of life skills. I would say to parents wondering about the negative responses- 2 pieces of advice (also to me from my friend)- if it takes more than 20 min to do a lesson, your child is either tired or not ready for the lessons. Don't push it or they are right, it won't be fun. Secondly, if YOU are getting frusterated, put it away. If you are not experiencing joy & amazement at watching your child learn before your eyes, YOU may be tired & not ready. Enjoy the experience!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am a mom, a certified teacher, and an elementary school principal. I recommend this book to everyone I encounter. I see that a few people have rated it poorly because of its lack of pictures and interesting literature. That was not the purpose of this book. The purpose is to teach children the basic concept of phonics so that they are able to unlock words at a higher level. Supplement, supplement, supplement with additional literature as you are using this material with your child. My son resisted it when he was three and four. Finally, when he was 4.5, he was a little more open to the lessons. He is now 7, in the first grade, and reading at a 5.1 reading level. I believe in Engelmann's approach. I've not simply seen it work with my own child, but with hundreds of children in the classroom. Good luck and remember...do what is best for your own child and move at their own pace. No two children are alike. Oh...and never stop reading TO your child. This is where they will acquire the higher-level vocabulary that will allow them to continue to soar in reading.
KenWRG More than 1 year ago
I'm very happy with the results so far. My daughter (4 years old) is currently on lesson 7 and liking the book a lot. It isn't a very colorful book with lots of exciting things, however, the parent needs to keep it fresh/exciting for the kid. I just got stickers (stars) for her so when we finish a lesson, she can put the star on the page for completing it well. Also, the sounding out of words can be exagerated in a way that keeps them interested and I say things like "I can't hear you..." when it's her turn to say the sound. She thinks that's funny and keeps her interested.
PEACANPR More than 1 year ago
My sister let me borrow hers for my 4 year old turning 5 at the time. She learned to read in about 40 lessons of the book and never finisthed it. But she reads just as well at her cousin. At 6 years old (skipped Kindergarten-bec she was already reading, currentlly in the 2nd grade she has a third grade reading comprehension. She is reading chapter books. First I would like to say is that she was definately ready to learn. She wanted me to teach her. Self-Motivation/Self-Determination was more then 1/2 the Battle... I would not have done it w/o these two things that she possesed. One thing also is that it helped her with writing skills as well (which most have not mentioned). It also taught her how to use the illustrations to help with words that she may be stuck with. I am getting my own copy for my 4 year old and then so my 8 week old son can use it when he is older. My 6 year old may also benefit from finishing the lessons (because its never too late to get the vital importance of breaking down bigger words--which i notice that she gets frustrated on). They taught that towards the end of the book. GREAT VALUE!!! BUY ONE FOR YOU AND FOR A FRIENDS! LEARN TO READ/COMPREHEND TOGETHER AND WATCH YOUR CHILD BLOSSOM AND EXCEL BEFORE YOUR EYES!!!
di10 More than 1 year ago
I have found this to be a great program; engaging and challening for the reader. The book has easy to read directions, but it does take a few lessons to get the structured style down. It took me the first three lessons, time and dedication to get the program. Within the first 10 lessons I have noticed the confidence and progress in my son's reading. Plus, the book explains to the parent how to keep the child interested, so he can learn at his own pace.
Monica_Swanson More than 1 year ago
I am teaching my son, who is about to be 5, to read with this book. I can't imagine anything being easier to use than this book. It has what the teacher should say in red and even what questions to expect from the student and how to answer them. I add extra activities to the book like flash cards of words he already learned in the book, but otherwords, the book is the whole package.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought this book back in May of 2004. After I got thru the parent section, I started on it immediately!!! After the first 15 lessons, I found that I could do 2 lessons a day '1 in a.m. & 1 in late afternoon before dinner'. My daughter was not even 4 1/2 years old yet. She flew thru the book. A couple of months later, she went for a kindergarten orientation/testing. When I picked her up at the end of the 2 hrs., the first thing out of her teacher's mouth was, 'Wow, she's amazing!' She started school a year early. She is now going into the 4th Grade '2007-2008 school year' and she LOVES TO READ!!!!! Last year, she got the highest school points in the Accelerated Reader Program '708 pts', knocking out the the old highest record of 694.7 pts. obtained in a single school year. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this book to any one. It is easy to use, and it works. My child is proof of that!! I only give it a '5' because that is the highest I can give it! I recommend this book to anyone, friends or strangers. I volunteer a lot at my child's school, and I HAVE recommended this book to new parents at the school for Kinder. orientation. I have also gotten impressive reviews from her teachers & sch. admin. that I have shown this book to. They have all stated that it is a wonderful book. Once I found this book, I did not even look for another teaching aid, so I have no other related titles to offer.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have used this for many children who were behind their peers in reading. This book has allowed a second grader who was a total non-reader to reach grade level in ONE summer! The kids love Teach Your Child and so do their parents. I highly recommend this book to any person who wants to teach a child to read, the right way!
Guest More than 1 year ago
My second grader has learning disabilities which has greatly challenged her in reading. This book was exactly what she needed. I recommend it highly. If your child is having problems reading try this book. It gave my child a lot of confidence.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was very concerned, being a first-time homeschooler, that I would be able to teach my child to read. After much searching and frustration, I decided to give this book a try. We are a little over half-way through they book and my son is already reading Green Eggs and Ham. It is so easy for the parent and for the child. It goes slowly, which is it great for young readers. After starting this book I found out how many other people use it and love it. I recommend to everyone!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Fantastic book. Have used with 3 children, and they have all excelled in reading with this book. Phonics based program makes reading fast and exciting. My kids have never taken the full 100 days, but have begged to do several lessons a day.....which is less than 20-30 minutes. Great results from a great book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you really want to teach your child to read get this book. This book makes it so easy to do and my daughter learned to read when she was 4 years old with this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
My daughter and I are about 1/3 of the way through this book. I have been amazed at her progress! We work on one lesson each day and after about a month, she is understands how to sound out most simple words. As an added bonus, she now loves writing. The books seemed a little slow at first, so be sure to give it a chance.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book helped my husband teach my daughter to read....Not only was it a great way to learn to read ... it was their special time together every night when I was cleaning up....LOVE IT!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first discovered DISTAR when my oldest daughter was in Kindergarten. She brought printouts of her daily work home and used them to play school with her younger brother. By the end of her 'K' year(1973-74), our son was reading at the same level as our daughter. When he entered 'K' that Fall he was immediately placed in 1st grade reading. Their school was 'open structure' which allowed for easy movement between reading and math levels for each child's individual needs. How hard can a system be when a 5-year old can teach a 4-year old to read?! On our son's 5th birthday that October he read his own cards. After I had all four of my children in school, I worked as a teachers' aide and taught DISTAR in 'K' so I'm very familiar with it. I am a die-hard fan and am buying this book to use with my granddaughter. Her brother is fortunate to attend the same school as their mother and to have used DISTAR. He had the same 'K' teachers my children had and by the end of his 'K' year he had finished four 1st grade books and had started on the 'Treehouse' chapter books for his own reading pleasure. But at the end of that year, the older 'K' teachers retired. When the new 'K' teachers moved in, they threw out DISTAR and brought in a phonics system they had used for years because they didn't want to learn a new method - one a 5-year old could teach! After 3 years w/o DISTAR, the children are not reading as well and the 1st grade teachers are very concerned. A friend's daughter just completed 'K' and she can't read a simple 'I Can Read' book! She couldn't even sound out the 'ing' suffex! I do daycare for my granddaughter and will use this book with her so that she will be prepared when she gets to 'K'. I know DISTAR works I've seen it work on my chidren and grandson and I've taught it. My children developed an early love of reading and continue to read for learning and pleasure - passing on good reading habits to their own children. And, at my 9-year old grandson's request, we spend more time at Barnes & Noble and Borders than any other store! His little sister will soon be following his lead! )
Guest More than 1 year ago
When my five-year-old was four I bought this book. He knew all his letters (uppercase, lowercase and, sounds), so I figured he was ready to learn. By the end of the 100th lesson he was able to read independently. His first 'real' book was 'Green Eggs and Ham.' I wish I had this book when my older two were learning to read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I used this book with my son and daughter several years ago. I have recommended the book to several friends. My son and daughter were ready to read very early on. After using the book with my children at age 4, they were reading chapter books by age 5. Both of my children are reading atleast 3 grade levels ahead of their classmates. I owe it all to this book. If your child is ready to read, this book is for you!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I wish I had known about this book 4 years ago. My oldest son struggled with reading and got behind in his class. After being told he would need to repeat 1st grade, I started doing a lot of research about homeschooling. Someone gave us Hooked on Phonics, and I also purchase another reading program. A friend recommended this book, so I thought I would try it with my then 3 yr. old. At first I couldn't get him through the lessons, so I put it away for awhile. Now he just turned 4, we started it a few months ago, and he is reading sentences. He attends a very advanced preschool and is ahead of every other child in his class. I have recommended this book to other parents of children in his class and other friends as well. This book is easy to use, uncomplicated in its approach and best of all--INEXPENSIVE!!!!
Anonymous 6 days ago
I have taught 2 of my children to read (at age 6) with this book, and it was fun and simple. I like the one-lesson-per-day format. I also liked that the text for the parent is provided. The stories are humorous. The pictures, which are only to be viewed after the story is read, are helpful. The writing lessons are helpful, too.
ChristianR on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This worked really well for me with my children! My daughter, now 19, still remembers it vividly as "the yellow book" and she loved it. I highly recommend using it with a pre-kindergartener.
halstead898 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I love this book. I have taught 3 children to read using this book in varying degrees for each child.
datrappert on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I taught my daughter to read, beginning when she was 4 and ending when she was a little over 5. Now she's 6 and in Kindergarten and can read just about anything she wants to. The complete original Winnie the Pooh stories, nutrition information on milk cartons, you name it.This book actually does what it says it will do. Amazing!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is probably THE BEST book to teach your kid to read. The lessons are simple, short and fun. My 5 year old is so excited to do his reading lesson every day. It does start slow, as stated in the introduction of the book, but IT WORKS.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My busy boy who cant keep still. Will sit with me and do these lessons with ease!!! The lessons uses your eyes, ears, and touch to teach..... Therefore, the child is slow to forget. If this is your first time.... Follow the directions to the tea!! If you have some experence, you can even do two lessons a day..... My child is moving right along..... He is 5 , african american, and going to kindergarten. The percentage in this country, tells me he is doomed for failer, but not with this book!!!!!