Friday, September 13, 2013

Wilson Fundations on a Shoestring

Hi friends.  How often do you find yourself in a situation where you would like to implement something in your classroom, but you just do not have the resources to do it?  I know, I know, I'm sure you  n e v e r  deal with type of issue in your classroom.
Wait, let me rephrase that . . .
I'm sure you constantly deal with that type of issue in your classroom.  Well, right now I am trying to implement Wilson Fundations in my class with very few resources provided for me.  
If you are unfamiliar with Wilson, it is a phonics/reading program.  It appeals to me because of the emphasis on hands on activities.  From what I can tell, to really set your class up with Wilson, the cost would be about as much as a new reading series.
However, like most teachers, I am not going to give up because the cost of something makes it seem out of reach.  For the materials to get started with Fundations, I decided to get resourceful (when possible) and make or find less expensive substitutes.  I also decided to purchase as much as I could from Wilson, but I had to be very targeted in how I spent my money.
One resource not pictured above is the Teacher's Manual.  It is very important when teaching with Wilson Fundations.
So far I am happy with the work my class has been doing with Wilson.  The whole group activities serve as reinforcement of letter sounds and are perfect for formative assessments. The activities fit in nicely during my Daily Five time as mini lessons.  For my struggling readers, working a bit more with Wilson during small group time seems to be just what they need.
Where there's a will, there's a way.  I'm happy to be getting my feet wet with Wilson Fundations without breaking the bank.


  1. We use Zoophonics to get our little ones going. It has a kinesthetic approach that I love and the kids know all their letter sounds very quickly. You're doing a great job of implementing this program with your own touches! I love the owl!

  2. This program looks great, Amber. Thank you for sharing it. I am so taken with your Echo Owl. I LOVE that idea! :) Have a wonderful weekend!
    Kindergarten: Holding Hands and Sticking Together

  3. I love that Echo owl-- might just have create one for our room too! Good luck with your new program!
    Aylin :)
    Learning to the Core

  4. We use Wilson Fundations and are fortunate enough to have most of the materials provide. However, your Echo is way cuter. I generally enjoy the program and think the kids do too. Glad that it's working for you so far.

    Compassionate Teacher

  5. We use Fundations, too and were lucky enough to have secured a grant that got us kits this year. You are doing great with what you have. You chose the right things to purchase and have made some great substitutes!

    Always an Adventure in Kindergarten

  6. Hi! Did you get workbooks for your students? Or just one that you make copies from? Thanks!!!

  7. I know this post is several years old, but I just wanted to say thank you! I used Wilson last year with special education students 2nd-4th, but this year at a new school I'll be working with K-3rd and Fundations seems like a better fit. Of course, neither Wilson or Fundations are to be found and there is nothing in the budget. I did Wilson with just the starter kit so I think I am going to give Fundations a try with the materials you suggested!

    Years That Ask Questions

  8. Hi!
    We are adapting Fundations this year and we are also on a budget! I am looking to do the same thing with cookie sheets and I love how you have the letter grid printed on the cookie sheet. Can you explain how you did this? Thanks so much!