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A Very Expensive Phonics School

  1. #1
    wanyin is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Hong kong

    A Very Expensive Phonics School

    Has any one tried PHONICSLAND in Causeway Bay? I heard really good feedback from parents and colleages, so decided to check it out, only to be told that one private Phonics class (for 45 minutes!) cost $1000!!!
    The I asked about their group lessons, and was told that to be taught by their teacher, i need to self-form a group with at 4 children, then they can arrange for a class time for me. I have never had this experience where I had to form my son's own learning group. Any one with similar experiences?
    It was amazing how packed it was when I went there. Wondering if it is really worth paying that much for a phonics lesson, even if it is THAT good. Please advise!!!!

  2. #2
    repulsebayhk is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Hong Kong
    Hi, yes, my child learned his phonics there 2 years back. He is now K3 and he can read the highest level in the Oxford reading tree series. It took him a mere 2 years to learn all he has to learn in spelling. His reading level, as assessed by a language therapist has teacher the same level as of a 9 year old. He is still at phonics land, now learning about grammar and writing simple stories. I highly recommend this place. But you are right, it's a little expensive. However, if you do the calculations, what you learn here in a session would probably be equivalent to 3 hours elsewhere, so I would say it is worthwhile :) good luck

  3. #3
    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Sai Kung
    a little expensive?

  4. #4
    MommyTo3 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Ridiciously expensive?!

    I would never spend money on those type of classes unless my child had some (serious) problems with phonics. My children are doing well in school, my little ones (5 1/2) above average in reading and writing after a year in Y1 and they couldn't read a word before starting. Not sure what the reason is for considering these classes though. If your child is generally weak in phonics I can understand you may want him / her to be at least at an average level, help him / her with a push in the right direction, but if this is not the case, why would you want to push them well ahead of their peers? I know this is Hong Kong where a lot of people have a slightly different approach, but I read this article once about those children having an "early start", those are not necessarily the ones "finishing first". We personally spend our money on classes that my kids like (or makes them well rounded, like art class, sports) or they need (my oldest needs help with Mandarin in order to keep up with her Pathway).

    Besides reading is way more than just learning phonics and knowing how to spell. That's only a small part of reading. One my kids has an excellent memory, spells really well for his age, and even though overall, he's an above average reader, you can't forget about comprehension, fluency, speed, vocabulary, imagination (how do you think the story ends, what else could have happened, etc.). Our school (an ESF school) evaluates reading as a whole (as they should). Every year I hear from teachers in the lower primary that they have children in Y1 who can read at a Y2 or Y3 level, but there is no understanding of what they're reading, no imagination, no expression in reading.

    Again, by all means, classes are nice, especially if your child needs to have a small push in a certain area, but it may be just me, I don't see the need for my 5 year olds to read like their 8 year old sister already ... If they do, they do, but are not going to push them by spending lots of $$$$ on classes.
    Last edited by MommyTo3; 07-04-2012 at 06:13 PM.
    evgreen, Gataloca, slin and 3 others like this.

  5. #5
    HappyV is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2005
    A music lesson or sports training from a top teacher will be between 700-1200 per hour. Why should top-notch lessons in literacy be any less?

  6. #6
    howardcoombs is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Happy Valley
    Sports, music or phonics : to spend *that* on a 3-5 year old is nutty.
    MommyTo3 and TNT like this.

  7. #7
    Newbie_hk is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    I wouldn't spend that money on phonics for a 4/5 year old. My 4 year old, the only native English speaker in her class was singled out by her teacher to be weak in reading & phonics (for a native speaker) compared to her local counterparts who supplement their schooling with extra classes. I tried not to cave in to pressure but I was more worried about my daughter losing confidence. Instead of paying for lessons, I taught her myself. I made flash cards out of sight words, printed worksheets from the internet, played phonics songs & rhymes from YouTube. I bought a few Word World DVDs. At the end of year assessment, the teacher said she was able to catch up & even excelled in some bits. Like the others, I find spending that much money for extra lessons for 3-5 year old too much. But if you have the dosh, go for it.

  8. #8
    mejulie12 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2012

    phonics land


    I would be interested to share class with you? Let me know My daughter is 3 years old

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