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    Letter People
    By Leigh

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    The district that I have taught in used it as a supplemental program for the entire 17 years that I have taught the kindergarten program. Times are a changing though, not that I totally agree with the changes. The curriculum director doesn't like the letter people . . . She has wanted to get rid of them for 3 years. She doesn't have her elementary education degree and has experience in 6 -12 grades.

    I've never used the letter people program as written by the company. I used the letter people blow-ups to introduce letter names and personalities including the sounds they made. The students enjoy the songs that go with each letter.

    We've always had the main reading program from "Getting Ready To Read" in the 1980's (Houghton Mifflin) to the literacy based Houghton Mifflin Reading program of the 1990's.

    For the last 4 years, we've used the "Land of the Letter People" for the first semester of the school year to introduce the letters' names and their sounds accompanied by the "PALS" program - Peer Assisted Learning Strategies. By mid-year, we were required to implement the "Read Well" program starting with unit 1 with all kindergartners. We've used the "Optimize Reading" program - pilot program - and "Road To the Code" phonemic awareness program for the students that didn't score "mastery" on the D.I.B.E.L.S. testing that we give 3 times per year - Dynamic Indictators of Beginning Early Literacy Skills.

    This coming year, the details of how we will be required to implement the reading programs is up in the air. Last heard, we are purchasing the kindergarten version of "Read Well." Whether the use of the Letter People material will be allow hasn't been defined.

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