Comics : Marvel Super Hero Squad: Sight Words #1
This review was first published on: May 2014.
We're seeing plenty of these "Phonics" and "Sight Words" book sets come out these days. I've found four Marvel/Spider-Man sets already, and there's probably more to come. As with all the other packs, there are 12 slim, staple-bound books in a cardboard box.
This particular set is from Scholastic Australia, and seems to be marketed in the NZ/Australia/Asia region only. I would have thought that marketing in the United States would have been an obvious move. I presume there are legal/copyright reasons why this product is so restricted in its distribution.
Each book is a sizeable 5.5" x 7.5" format — noticeably larger in format than the earlier versions I have seen. The actual page count is the same though, at twelve pages per book.
There are ten "sight word" books. Each tells a simple story featuring the "Marvel Super Hero Squad" characters. Within that story, four simple words are identified and used repeatedly, providing sight-word reading practice on common short words.
Each double-page typically features a full-page illustration, and a few short sentences making up 20-30 words. The illustrations are well-drawn, rich in colour and surprisingly detailed.
There are also two "Workbooks", which essentially contain simple puzzles and word games. Spider-Man appears in most of the "sight word" books, and also in the second workbook.
I'm not particularly a fan of the "Super Hero Squad" material. I find it facile and formulaic. But to be fair, those attributes aren't quite as offensive in Sight Word/Phonic books as they are in other settings.
These books exist for a specific purpose, and they fulfil that role well. This box is reasonably priced, and overall this is a sound product.
Three and a half webs.