Welcome to logo 210 x 52 Aug 2015 

My name is Laurie Fykea retired teacher, proud parent and grandparent.  ILaurie-Fyke decided to start this blog because I’m passionate about literacy, and would like to share information and resources that will help homeschoolers,  parents, and educators empower children to maximize their reading and writing potential. I believe everyone should have access to high quality, effective, interactive, and fun learning materials.

After many years of teaching primary grades, library,  and computers… often in low socio-economic schools… I began working with grade one reading-readiness groups (1999).  In my research I learned about the Jolly Phonics program. The hand actions and visuals helped, but I needed a way for my students to easily identify and recall the sounds of our language. A kindergarten teacher, Kerrie Sinclair, and I developed the Jolly Songs… later published by Chris Jolly @ Jolly Learning Ltd. (2005). I had been a kindergarten, or grade one teacher through the Language Experience Approach, Play Based Learning and Whole Language. I now witnessed the effectiveness of synthetic phonics, and how it empowered children.   I saw students, whose siblings were all in general learning disability classrooms, become average readers by the end of grade one. I also met some amazing friends and dedicated teacher/authors like Sue Lloyd and Sara Wernham.

I returned to work with kindergarten children in 2001 and noticed a need for assessment tools. As I looked for ways to simplify basics skills, and researched problem areas, I began to identify where children fell through the gaps when learning to read and write.  As an informed educator, I used these tools to help me identify each child’s strengths and discover their weaknesses … maximizing each student’s potential in a warm and friendly, activity based environment.   Fellow educators were impressed with my project and suggested I publish it. Scholastic NY did publish: Essential Kindergarten Assessments for Reading, Writing and Math and Easy Assessments for Pre-Kindergarten in 2007.

I met Michael Hughes (UK) through a fellow Jolly Phonics Trainer in the Chicago area- Deb Bible. Michael has developed cubes (CANDOCUBES) with the phonemes on them as a manipulative to help children create and sound out words … as they learn the code for our language.  The first cube has the six sounds /s/,/a/, /t/, /p/ /i/, /n/.  Using the first group of cubes the children can identify the sounds they need,  then turn and place the cubes to create words like: pin, sat, spin. (It’s a great manipulative!) Debbie Hepplewhite (Synthetic Phonics.com/ Phonics International) had developed instructions for using the cubes. Deb Bible, Tara Jenner (The Brain Trainer) and I edited these booklets for the North American market. I then produced a teacher resource package for CANDOCUBES.

As a Jolly Phonics Professional Trainer,  I continued to develop resources for teachers.  A friend, Lynda Traves,encouraged me to market my resources. Another JP Trainer, Sue Brunson, (Wisconsin) recommended Teachers Pay Teachers.  Other friends recommended joining another online site for teacher-created resources: Teacher’s Notebook! How lucky I am to be influenced by so many people!

I continue to challenge myself to create material and provide interactive resources to facilitate developing skills and strategies that will empower children.

Have a great day!



 mattar-photos-blog LAURIE FYKE is a teacher who shares easy to implement ideas and strategies with fellow teachers.
[Learn more]
 thumbnail_essentialkindergarten Use rubric-based assessment to inform your teaching with the KINDERGARTEN ASSESSMENT BOOKS for preschool (JK) and Kindergarten (SK).
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 jolly_phonics_b Evidence-based programs like JOLLY PHONICS and JOLLY GRAMMAR provide multi-sensory activities to teach the children the ‘code’ for our language.
[Learn more]
 image_jolly_songs The JOLLY SONGS are an excellent tool for young children to learn to ‘hear’ the sounds of our language and visually make the connection between the letter(s) and the sound.
[Learn more]
 ndo-2 CAN DO CUBES for SYNTHETIC PHONICS and GRAMMAR are laser engraved wooden block manipulatives.
[Learn more]
 image_jollyphonics_handbook Check out the Jolly Learning website for amazing trainers hosting Jolly Phonics WORKSHOPS in your area.



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