Once we made the decision to homeschool it opened up a whole world of new things I needed to learn about. How to teach the basics. Which basics to even start with. That one was fairly easy: reading and math.
There is a debate over how to teach young children to read. Whole word method or phonics. The one is typical in public schools, the other is common in homeschools. The one requires that you memorize word shapes (for example tall-letter, short-letter, tall-letter, tall-letter written underneath a picture of a boy playing fetch with his dog) well that word boys and girls is "ball". OMG. How do they expect anyone to remember tall-letter, short-letter, tall-letter, tall-letter = ball???? They don't. Not really. But THAT is a whole different theory and one I am not going to explore yet.
Phonics will teach you that the letter b says "buh" the a says "ahh" the l says "luh". (Hmmm I've never tried to write out the phonics sounds before, not as easy as it would seem.) Then when you add that t says "tuh" you can read ball, at, tab, blat, etc...
Anyway, the books recommended in Well-Trained Mind for beginning phonics are Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons and Phonics Pathways.
How the heck was I supposed to know which one to pick???? The choice was made very simple. When I got to B&N one was on the shelf, the other would have to be ordered in. I hate waiting.
Punkin and I had a lot of success using the Teach Your Child book. The lessons were prescripted with the teacher stuff to say written in red. You sit with your child and you both look at the same book and it was a really cozy and cuddly time. She did GREAT and learned to read with really no struggle and no tears. We just took it easy, went slow. Somteimes we would take a break from it for days, even a week or two, and come back, usually repeating the last 4-6 lessons to get back up to speed.
Sometimes I wish that we had used Phonics Pathways or even Explode the Code for a more thorough grounding in phonetic sounds etc... But, Teach Your Child did the job I wanted it to do, which was to get my daughter reading.