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Homeschool Crew Review of a Phonetic Reader: What Am I?





What Am I? A Collection of Short Stories   is a beautifully illustrated phonetic reader and the third TOS Homeschool Crew product we received from Marie Rippel.   Earlier we looked at the Beehive Reader 1 (now called Cobweb the Cat)and All About Spelling: Levels One and Two. 


What Am I?  is the second reader in the All About Reading Series following Cobweb the Cat, and is closely correlated with All About Spelling: Level Two.  It can also be used independently as a phonetic reader without using the spelling series. 


This appealing book has 160 thick, creamy pages sewn into a study hardback cover. Its ten chapters are full of lovely black and white illustrations.  The words are all phonetic and the stories vary from realistic to wildly imaginative.     


I did not enjoy this book as much as the earlier one, perhaps because the zaniness seemed to outweigh the realism.  On the other hand, one of my children said, “It’s crazy.  That’s what’s nice about it.”  


In this book, your child will watch some incredibly interesting passengers waiting for a bus; visit with an ostrich-riding elf in the Alps; read a complaint letter about a defective robot; have a bake sale for Chinese orphans; learn patience with rude, smelly individuals; ride a horse; watch a skunk build a home; find the missing snakes at the pet store; and enjoy catchy rhymes and riddles.


Littlest Miss not quite finished the earlier reader in the series, and therefore we have not been able to actually use What Am I? yet.  She enjoyed the realistic stories in the earlier book, but is fine with silliness if she can build a relationship with the characters.  I think that some of the stories in this reader are so imaginative that they don’t make sense, but I know she’ll really enjoy the realistic ones. 


In any case, Littlest Miss will need to look carefully at the words themselves as she reads these stories.  She likes to guess at words from the pictures or the context, but the zany character of these stories often makes that impossible.  That is probably a good thing for her.


One of my children pointed out that the cover and the illustrations in this book make it so nice that the words hardly matter.   While that may not be the best endorsement for a phonetic reader (smile), it does indicate the overall quality of the book.


If you’re looking for an appealing, high-quality phonetic reader that will stand repeated reading by a whole family of little ones, you should check out What Am I? 


To see what other families thought of this book, please visit the Homeschool Review Crew blog.  Be sure to check back at the website when the book is released, which will be soon.    


To Purchase

What Am I?  A Collection of Short Stories by Marie Rippel and Renee LaTulippe  will be available soon for $19.95 at the All About Reading website. 



Disclosure Policy:   As a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew, I received a free advance copy of What Am I?  A Collection of Short Stories  in exchange for our family’s honest opinions.


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