Timmy has been slower than molasses in winter in learning his phonics sounds, but since he should be moving into 1st grade, I pulled out my secret ammunition in the war on illiteracy: How to Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons. This book goes tiny step by step in teaching a child to read sounds, then short words, then short stories in about 15 minutes a day. I have used this book with 5 children now, after being advised to buy it from the mom who first introduced me to homeschooling 15 years ago. We have never gotten through all 100 lessons, usually quitting at about lesson 60-75 to move on to real books and the Faith and Freedom readers.
Timmy is still having trouble recalling the short a sound, so we have repeated 2 lessons, but in the past 2 weeks he has started sounding out 3 and 4 letter words. My goal is to have a child who loves to read, so I don't want to overburden him with excessive practice each day, just a slow and steady progression from "the cat sat on the mat" to eventually reading his way through my extensive children's fiction collection.