The programs at Colvard Learning are aligned to the Common Core State Standards to build, increase, and support student learning. With Pup’s Quest for Phonics, we address Reading Standards for Literature (RL), Reading Standards for Informational Text (RI), Reading Standards: Foundational Skills (RF), Writing Standards (RW), Speaking and Listening Standards (SL), and Language Standards (L). In meeting the expectations established by the Common Core State Standards, Pup’s Quest for Phonics uses Bloom’s Taxonomy and Depth of Knowledge (DOK) through the narrative, reading comprehension questions, and comprehensive supplemental materials.
Colvard Learning has been diligent in developing blended curricula. When used in a developmentally appropriate manner, technology is an educational resource in classrooms that can empower both students and teachers. It is not our intention to replace effective classroom instruction; rather, we strive to create a resource for teachers to supplement and enhance skillful instruction and interactions between children and adults. By combining the digital platform with off-tablet supplemental materials and activities, we strive to develop rich, meaningful learning experiences to prepare students for success in preschool, kindergarten, and beyond.
The methodology of Pup’s Quest for Phonics is based on the most current, credible research in the field. In developing the reading program, our experts drew from the findings and clinical insights of Dr. Louisa Moats, Dr. Diane McGuinness, and the National Reading Panel (2000). Of the findings of the National Reading Panel, three skills were identified to be essential to reading success: 1) the ability to hear (discriminate), segment and blend phonemes in words; 2) the ability to remember which letters or letter patterns represent each phoneme; and 3) the ability to write letter shapes, words, phrases, and sentences fluently and accurately.
Drawing from these findings, Dr. McGuinness created a “best practices” teaching model, which Colvard Learning utilizes in its program. This consists of three phoneme activities, a grapheme writing activity, a word blending/spelling activity, and a reading activity based on a carefully scaffolded story. Pup’s Quest for Phonics uses the best reading research and classroom practices to provide a strong literacy foundation for early readers.
The curricula of Professor Pup’s Phoneme Farm was developed using developmentally appropriate practices and evidence-based approaches which stress the significance of building early phonemic awareness skills through direct instruction (National Early Literacy Panel; Yopp, 2009; and Barnett, 2013). Phonemic awareness is the ability to hear and manipulate the smallest unit of sound, phonemes, in spoken words. It is one of many skills which, taken together, comprise phonological awareness, the ability to attend to sounds in oral language. Moreover, Professor Pup’s Phoneme Farm draws significantly upon Ann Epstein’s The Intentional Teacher and strikes a balance between effective teacher-directed instruction and opportunities for authentic, hands-on activities to engage students.