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Rock 'N Learn: Letter Sounds
Rock 'N Learn Letter Sounds
Actor: Rock 'N Learn
Director: Richard Caudle
Genres: Kids & Family, Special Interests, Educational, Animation
NR     2003     0hr 52min

Cool music and fun games get kids excited about reading. Covers the most common sound that each letter makes. The video features an on-screen mouth showing how to form each sound. By the end of this program, kids are combi...  more »


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Movie Details

Actor: Rock 'N Learn
Director: Richard Caudle
Genres: Kids & Family, Special Interests, Educational, Animation
Sub-Genres: Animation, Numbers & Letters, Reading & Phonics, Special Interests, Educational, Animation
Studio: Rock 'N Learn
Format: DVD - Color - Animated
DVD Release Date: 05/28/2003
Original Release Date: 01/01/2003
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2003
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 0hr 52min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

I'm Pleasantly Pleased
Jennifer Bogart | Alberta, Canada | 07/05/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)

"A DVD sporting the simple title Letter Sounds may sound unimpressive. Teaching letter sounds, how hard can that be? Well, if you've ever taught children to read you'll know that structured, consistent, repetitive practice is required in order to teach young ones the basic building blocks of the written English language.

Rock `N Learn's Letter Sounds DVD both meets those requirements and tackles much more than simple letter sounds: introducing the alphabet, learning the short sounds of the vowels and consonants, fun `interactive' tests, guiding children into blending, an introduction to consonant blends, sight words, and reading full sentences. It does all that in a fun-filled, bright, musical DVD that has drawn both my three-year-old and six-year-old into repeating letter names, sounds and has my older child reading along.

Recommended for children from four- to seven-years-old who are just beginning their phonics education, I recommend that parents interested in teaching the alphabet, sounds, and early reading skills to pick up the disc before teaching their child the alphabet song. Letter Sounds opens with a lively performance of "The New Alphabet Song", a jazzy, rocky tune that allows for clear enunciation of each letter. It's about time parents had a new version to work with, young children often believe that "lmnop" is one letter due to the slur in the traditional tune. Rock `N Learn's version features clear spaces between each letter name, and is followed by a spoken chant so that children won't rely upon the tune alone. Flashing letters that flip from upper to lower case along with the song effectively combine audio and visual learning strategies to reach children.

After the alphabet is introduced, the short sounds for each letter are presented from A to Z. The upper-case and lower-case letter appear in the upper left-hand corner of the screen. A talking mouth that speaks and clearly demonstrates how to form each letter sound with the mouth, teeth, and tongue appears in the upper right hand corner. A visual illustrating the word spoken appears in the lower half of the screen. For the letter D the mouth says, "Dee, d, d, dog", after which the word `dog' appears beneath the capital and lower case "d"s on screen. The mouth then repeats the information, allowing for children to join him on the second repetition. Not only is this an effective way to convey the sound information for each letter, it is also useful for children learning to clearly pronounce each sound in their daily speech. Children in speech therapy, or those still working on a few problem sounds can benefit greatly from this portion of the disc.

My oldest already has a solid foundation in the short-letter sounds that are introduced on the disc, but doesn't have a great understanding of connecting letter sounds and names, something the "Letter Sounds Quiz" is designed to remedy. Presented in a game show format, a sentence with a prevalent sound is read to the children (accompanied by cheerful pictures). After listening for the repeating sound the child is to give the letter's name before the timer goes off.

The DVD then demonstrates how to sound out words by the standard television technique of lighting up letters individually, pronouncing them one by one, and then pushing them towards each other to eliminate the spaces between them, repeating, and finally reading the word. Blending is such a tricky skill for children, and seems to require a certain `click' developmentally, any help visualizing the process is very helpful. An similar technique is used in the introduction to consonant blends, and for the sight words the letter names are read for each letter rather than their sounds.

The disc concludes with "Reading Sentences in a Story", my favourite feature. Simple sentences using short words (most are three letters long) and short letter sounds are presented for children to read aloud before the narrator reads the sentence as it highlights each word. An accompanying animation enlivens brings the sentence to life visually, at times playing throughout the sentence, at other times playing only after the sentence has been read. What a neat and adorable way to encourage children to read.

While the total running time is 52 minutes, the DVD is best used with a mastery-based approach. Children should be introduced to one track at a time until the material is well understood before moving onto the next step, as each builds progressively upon previously established skills. The easy to use disc menu makes it easy to select the desired chapter. As much as it's tempting to just sit our children down in front of the TV so they can learn, parental involvement and encouragement create much higher interest and comprehension levels in young learners. With parental commitment to the program, this DVD will create a solid first-step for your child to stand upon as they pursue further phonics studies in the future. Letter Sounds is a fabulous introduction to phonics that I wish I'd known of sooner.

A video sample can be viewed online at the Rock `n Learn website.

Lessons Included:

1. The New Alphabet Song
2. Learn the Sounds
3. Letter Sounds Quiz
4. Name That Letter!
5. Reading Words
6. Words With Consonant Combinations
7. Common Sight Words
8. Bonus: Reading Sentences in a Story"
Not Very Rockin!
Ethansmom | Ohio | 11/18/2007
(1 out of 5 stars)

"This video does not really tie anything concrete to each letter which made it difficult for my child to retain the sound each letter makes. It also does not spend a lot of time helping your child learn each letter/sound before jumping into these silly quizzes about putting sounds together and asking what sound certain words begin with. We then bought the Leapfrog Letter Factory, and within 2 weeks my son knew all of his letters and sounds. Skip this one and go with a quality video. If you're looking for an introductory letter recognition dvd, this is not it."
Rock N Learn - Letter Sounds
CalebsMom | Alberta, Canada | 12/22/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Not sure how anyone could say that Rock N Learn is not the best DVD series out there...especially the Letter Sounds Rock 'N Learn: Letter Sounds. This is age appropriate for 3-5 year olds. If I could give this another star, I would. My husband and I spend quite a bit on learning for our son, and have bought Leap Frog and the like. NOTHING has compared to this series of products. My son watches it over and over again. He knows all the songs. You will not regret buying any of these Rock N Learn DVDs, we have 4 of them, and I just ordered another 3. Visit the Rock N Learn designer website to find out which product is age appropriate for your child and any child you may think could benefit. They have products from age 3-10 years old. Just make sure you buy a Rock N Learn DVD that is age appropriate. If there are any teachers, or school board trustees out there consider using or recommending them to parents. The publishers of this series have not done a good job of promoting them (I don't think) because a month ago was the first time I heard of this series and I spend quite a bit of time on the internet researching educational products for my 4 year old."
Great learning DVD!
Wendy Bialek | Algonquin | 01/30/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)

"My son has Autism and he asked me about this DVD since they used this in his school and wondered if he could get it...he loves it! It's got a catchy way of presenting the letters and sounds of each letter. A great tool to reinforce what the kids are learning at this stage. My son is 10 years old...mentally like a a 4 year old in many ways so he has fun with it. Also, there is a Telling Time one also which he certainly has not fully grasped yet bless his heart but this will help him!"