Review of Scaredy Cat Reading System, 2010:

This unique phonics programs combines a variety of teaching styles and allows the parent to pick and choose what works best for their child.

It include lots of games and songs as well as a very entertaining workbook to help the child learn to read. It focuses on Mastery of a phonics level before moving on so the child easily learns and loves it.

I am now teaching my second child to read. My first child reads so much that she often gets in trouble because we can't get her to put a book down! One of my favorite things about it is when I call to order or when I have a question, I am connected to the author herself, Joyce Herzog. That is a rare perk! TW @


Review of Budding Authors Fall, 2010 in Home Enrichment Magazine

Resource: Budding Authors Series

Publisher: Joyce Herzog

Author: Joyce Herzog

Recommended for


Telephone: 423-553-6387

Retail Price: $10–$15

Review by Merri Larsen

Charming black-and-white illustrations enhance this learning-to-write series by Joyce Herzog, a well-known, gifted teacher and author of many educational products. She and her husband published the wildly popular Scaredy Cat Reading System in 1991, which propelled them into a ministry of helping many families the world over.

The first book in this series, Step Into Writing, is written for beginning readers and focuses on short vowel sounds and simple sight words. Each lesson is organized into three steps: first the dictation of a simple story, then copywork, followed by an “experience story” in which the student narrates the story for the teacher to write down. Simple columns are provided to make it easy for the student to check capitals, punctuation, and spelling.

The next book is Step On Into Writing, which gradually builds sight-word recognition and vocabulary. A new feature of this level is the “Write Your Own Story” section. Students become quickly consumed with creating stories and learning to read them to others. There’s nothing like being an author to generate interest and excitement!

Continuing with Adventures in Writing, your student will focus on black-and-white pictures, answering related questions, using word boxes, and writing his own stories. Thinking skills, along with more writing skills and practice, take language arts to the next level.

With the next book, Then and Now, your student begins writing paragraphs. Early-twentieth-century pictures showing family scenes will motivate the student to compare lifestyles then and now. When seeing how people washed clothes and prepared food 100 years ago, students will learn to appreciate modern conveniences while realizing that some family ways never change—people of all times have the same basic needs; we all eat, sleep, work, and play.

In the next book, Writing U.S. History, your student learns beginning research skills and more complex writing skills, and begins a study of United States history. The lessons are written to encourage individual study, as only a few names and dates are given to jump-start the research and writing. Beginning with the Native peoples, the study moves to early explorers, continuing with key people and events on into the twenty-first century. Pages are printed on one side only, which leaves a blank page for sketching.

This series provides a great resource for teaching and recording individual progress in writing and language skills. These spiral-bound volumes are sure to become family treasures. Mrs. Herzog’s easy-to-follow instructions and teaching tips will help ensure success to beginning and veteran teachers alike.


Math Boxes Curriculum; My Box of TEN

If you haven’t heard of Joyce Herzog and you are teaching a child with learning differences (which really means she just doesn’t learn well in a typical classroom) you are missing out on a bunch of helpful advice.  The first time I heard Joyce was at my first homeschool conference back in 2004 in Indianapolis.  I was drawn to her sense of humor even though I felt my child was perfectly normal and wasn’t needing anything out of the ordinary.  I bought several of her resources including her book entitled “Timeless Teaching Tips” and was completely hooked.

Joyce has written curriculum for reading that I used with my middle son and now has come out with a wonderful new curriculum for beginning math called “My Box of 10″.  I have been using it with my daughter who is bright but struggles with writing skills.  As a result, she could be much further along in math than she is but has not been able to move forward because every math curriculum (even the hands-on stuff) requires writing.

For the last month, I’ve been using “My Box of 10″ and have found it to be a wonderful solution to our problem.  Rose is now steadily progressing through her addition facts because she is doing her math completely using the “My Box of 10″ hands-on system of learning.  There is no writing required and though I will focus on writing skills when Rose is capable of moving forward in that area, this curriculum makes it possible to move forward in Math without having writing skills.  Plus, it’s fun!  No more complaining, crying, crumpling papers, throwing pencils, or general gnashing of teeth around here!  Math is a looked forward to event that neither of us dread.

If you are interested in purchasing Joyce’s new curriculum for your homeschool, visit for more information.


Scaredy Cat Reading System:

Joyce Herzog has designed a user-friendly method that appeals to both child and parent. Recognizing problems some children have with letter/sound identification, she has created "stories" to help children learn and remember. These stories originate from a comic that comes with the program: "The Story of LetterMaster Who Gave the Vowels Their Jobs."… Variety is the hallmark of Scaredy Cat. Herzog has included games, lots of reading material (some illustrated), and many activity suggestions. The wealth of ideas reflects her years of practical experience and also makes it easier for us to adapt the program to suit the needs of different learners…Cathy Duffy


…here is great new curriculum that I found at the _______ Conference this fall. It is called Scaredy Cat Reading Systems by Joyce Herzog, a former special education teacher for a home school program. This is a fun early reading (K-3) curriculum that will give your kids a great reading foundation. It introduces the letters by telling a funny comic book story of how the letters got their names and why the vowels behave the way they do. It also teaches all the necessary reading and spelling rules through this storytelling format. There is an audio CD that helps guide the student through the lessons by singing songs and participating in activities. The teacher's guide is written for home schooling parents! It is easy to read, follow and plan! This is a great curriculum for tactile, auditory or visual learners. … the education team at a charter school


-from a mom of a daughter who learned to read at 2 ½ but then went through all kinds of programs to improve and learn to spell

Okay, just as I finish the teacher introduction and have everything about figured out there is one final "placement/evaluation test" to give before you start the program, it is a little different than the one online. You ask your child to "spell" out loud a series of nonsense phonetic words and then evaluate it and see where the weaknesses are: if they are with consonant sounds you are to review level 1, if the issue is vowel sounds then you are to review level 2, and if it is with blends then you can continue on with level 3.

What I learned in the evaluation was that she had some trouble with the vowel sounds and distinguishing between them. WOW! This made total sense because she is always asking me how to spell words and I sound them out for her and sometimes have to really emphasize the vowel sounds for her to get them.

So I called them to get recommendations and they gave me a couple options of playing some games or of doing level 2. I decided to purchase level 2. They said we would probably finish it in less than a month but it would help fill in the gaps and she would be able to spell those words with no problem by the end of the 10 lessons.

When level 2 arrived I read all of the teacher info and cut out all the flash cards and we began. We have been doing 1 lesson a day and it is very easy, the lessons would usually take a couple weeks or more but she is flying through them as they said she would. But she is learning so much. In lesson 1 alone her understanding of the vowels and their sounds and placement was AMAZING!

The program has a very "written by a reading teacher" undertone. Which is a good thing because you know you are not leaving anything out or skipping over anything. There are benchmarks along the way to test the mastery before going on. The teacher notes are excellent.

If I had another child I would go straight to Scaredy Cat and skip all of the other stuff we did. I am actually putting everything else up on ebay since I now have no need to save it.

I really feel that kids that use this program have such a strong grasp of phonics and language development. It amazes me to think that my daughter will be able to spell all of the words on the level 4 placement test by the end of this year. I like that the program teaches phonics, grammar and spelling together.



I am very thankful for your help in teaching my children who have struggled

with school.  My daughter (13) has had a hard time with reading, and just

about everything else.  I attended a home school convention where you spoke

about your child being able to write, read and do math with dinosaurs,

dinosaurs, dinosaurs or whatever your child is into.  Well my child is into

dogs, dogs, dogs.  Now after several years of reading about everything dogs,

along with vision therapy, which we looked into because of your advise. She

can write her own emails to sell her puppies and take her own pictures to

put her puppies on line.  She has been writing articles for her web site

also.  Her dad has been helping her put her site together.  She has been

reading breeder's magazines, books on showing dogs and proper methods of

clipping and grooming.  All of the materials were written for adults.

She wrote three emails today to prospective buyers for  her puppy business.

A few days ago she figured out the dosage for a medication for her puppies.

She isn't able to do this all on her own, but we have come so, so far!

Hooray!!  Every child can read and learn something new everyday.



SCRS and Autism Having a son with mild autism and speech delay, I was searching for a curriculum to teach reading, and have used Scaredy Cat with great success… he is catching on quickly and decoding words without much difficulty. Since there was a time I wondered whether he would ever be able to read and function even somewhat, it has blessed my heart to see him read and talk and interact with people of all ages! WS



I first want to let you know how blessed I have been through you and your work.  I first heard you speak years ago at the ______ Convention.  You were one of those speakers that I could just sit at your feet and listen to all day.  Your knowledge and wisdom was a great encouragement to me.  Thank you!  



...I really enjoyed your workshops. You have a way of simplifying educating my little ones that I really appreciate. To this day, my children still use your Alphabet Song over the most common one with the "a minnow" in the middle. Oh and "School in the Box"...genius! That box was, by far, the best purchase I made that weekend. -KM