The first 8 years are crucial for your child’s development. And the effort we make as parents in these years is often a strong indicator of their future success. Which is why we’ll take a look at some of the best learn to read programs available today.

You’re here because you understand the importance of actively teaching your child to read effectively.

So today we’re showcasing programs that are proven to be extremely effective in teaching your child to read fluently, confidently, and with understanding. They have been used by parents all over the world, and are generating excellent results.

A young girl laying on the bed reading a book from a reading program

What to Look for in a Learn to Read Program?


Before getting into the actual programs, let’s quickly look at what makes up a good learn to read program.

Phonics & Phonemic Awareness


Numerous studies show that teaching with phonics is by far the best way for a child to learn to read.

Children with poorly developed phonemic awareness by the time they enter grade school, usually end up as poor readers. Because reading and spelling success is largely a result of phonemic awareness. Even more so than general intelligence.

So, it’s critical for any good reading program to be based on phonics and phonemic awareness.



Kids want to have fun. And so they should.

So it’s essential for reading lessons to also be full of enjoyment. This will lead to positive experiences, and your child will look forward to future sessions. This positive association with reading will also help your child learn to read faster, and it will instill a love for reading.

Good reading programs make reading fun for both you and your child.

Positive Feedback


It goes without saying, reading programs need to be effective.

They all claim they are, however it’s best to read what other parents are saying about the various programs.

We always recommend having a look at the feedback from other parents. This will firstly give you a good indication of how good the program is. You’ll also read about parents personal experiences when using the program with their child. As well as their child’s reaction to the teaching and the results they achieved.

Sometimes you’ll be able to relate to another parents feedback as you find their situation similar to your own. This can help you decide whether the reading program is right for your child.


Now that we’ve looked at some of the important things to look for in a reading program, it’s time to show you our favorite learn to read programs in 2018.

Children Learning Reading is an incredibly popular learn to read program.

It’s lessons are short, simple  and extremely easy to follow.

Children Learning Reading’s main goal is to help children develop their phonemic awareness, so they can easily decode words and read fluently.

It’s mainly aimed at children between the ages of 2 and 6. The creators themselves have used it to teach their children to read when they were just 2 years old.

As long as your child can speak, they can learn to read fluently with Children Learning Reading.

Please note: If your child has not yet learned to speak, this learn to read program will not be of benefit.

Children Learning Reading is divided into two parts. Each part comes with an instruction book and step-by-step lessons.


Part 1:

Part 1 consists of 28 lessons, which are focused on developing a strong reading foundation.

These step-by-step lessons effectively teach the alphabet letters and their sounds. And it’s done in a very intuitive and sensible order. As your child progresses, they will start learning simple words and blending exercises. Ad gradually moving on to more complex words, sentences, stories and rhymes.

By the end of Part 1, your child will have already developed impressive reading skills.


Part 2:

Part 2 consists of 22 lessons. These are focused on greatly enhancing your child’s reading ability by teaching more advanced reading concepts.

Part 2 also consists of even more complex words, stories, sentences and rhymes designed to increase reading skill and fluency.


One of the major benefits of Children Learning Reading, is that it doesn’t force your child to explicitly memorize phonics rules. Rather, your child develops the valuable decoding skills as they progress through the program.

Pleasingly, the lessons are quick. Mostly between 5 – 10 minutes long, with some even being as short as 2 – 3 minutes. This is far more effective than long, drawn out lessons that exceed a young child’s attention span. Furthermore, teaching only needs to take place for 15 – 20 minutes each day.

Big reading improvements can be seen in your child within 10 -12 weeks of consistently using the program.

Overall, Children Learning Reading is our favorite learn to read program, and the one we give our 100% approval to.


Hooked On Phonics

Hooked On Phonics is another popular reading program designed for children between the ages of 3 – 8 years old.

You have a choice between the Complete Kit or the Digital Only version.

The Complete Kit consists of:

  • 8 Physical Workbooks
  • 26 Physical Story Books
  • 8 DVD’s
  • Stickers and Flashcards
  • As well as access to the online app which contains over 100 videos and over 275 interactive games which teach phonetic skills.

The Hooked On Phonics program is based on 8 levels.


Level 1 & 2: Early Emergent Readers

These lessons cover the alphabet letters and sounds. As well as rhyming words and matching beginning sounds with words and objects.


Level 3 & 4: Emergent Readers

Teaches short vowel sounds and compound words. As well as adding “s” to verbs and nouns.


Level 5 & 6: Transitional Readers


  • Beginning and end consonant blending “th”, “sh”, “-ch”, “-th”.
  • An additional 36 sight words
  • 2 Syllable words
  • Suffixes “-ing”, “-ly”


Level 7 & 8: Early Fluent Readers

These levels introduce more complex consonant blends and long vowel sounds.


You’ve seen our favorite learn to read programs for children. Now it’s up to you to decide on the one that’s best for child.

Congratulations on making the decision to take an active role in teaching your child to read. Aside from the obvious academic benefits, you’ll get to enjoy learning, playing and having fun together. This time spent bonding and seeing your child develop into a confident reader is priceless.

You can view our #1 learn to read program here.


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