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Learn to read with the Alphablocks – Phonics First Steps Volume 1

As a parent, I am always looking for fun and interesting ways to help educate my children and give them that added advantage.  I have 2 little girls, one age 4 and the other age 2.5.  I was recently introduced to Alphablocks by a friend via CBeebies (a children’s tv channel).  Although we had only watched a few episodes it appeared to be a great way to teach children how to recognise and pronounce the sound of letters and even to start spelling short words.  
On Friday I was sent a copy to review by the lovely guys at Abbey Home Media.  Now as you all know my reviews are all my honest opinion of the items I am sent, as a rule I won’t review items I don’t like.  I was so excited about reviewing this product that I put the DVD on straight away.  The kids enjoyed the music and as they watched each new episode start they would sing the song at the introduction to each.  
For those that are new to the Alphablocks they are 26 living letters who fall out of the sky and discover that when they hold hands and form a word this word then magically comes to life.  Each block is brightly coloured with a clear top so the letter can be read easily.  The start of the DVD gives you options for different steps but I found that the best way for me to use it was to play the whole DVD as this would cover everything.  The Alphablocks introduce themselves phonetically in alphabetical order first and then start phonetically sounding out short words as they would be taught to children in schools. The repetition of the sounds helps to reinforce the sound and pronunciation of the letters and of course their appearance in your child’s mind.  This has been developed by phonetics experts and teachers to help your child to recognise each letters appearance and sound and ultimately give them that added confidence in reading words.
My girls were both interacting with the programme, repeating the sounds as the letters appeared on the screen.  We used the free poster that came with the DVD to identify the sounds of letters and it became a game to see who could find the next letter that came up on the screen first either on the poster or on the tv screen and tell me the sound it made.  It’s now Sunday and within a few days of watching the DVD I have noticed a great improvement in both my girls pronunciation and recognition of the letters.
There are 18 episodes on the DVD where the Alphablocks spell out various short words in fun and interesting ways that engage children and keeps them watching until the end of the DVD.
The DVD will be available from the 25th February from all good DVD Stockists.

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