I don't know how many things I have found for preschool/homeschool while I have been thrifting, but it has to be a lot. I may buy specific Montessori materials new, but everything else, I'm always searching for a cheaper option! Even last year, when we were homeschooling 4 children 2nd through 5th grade, we bought things at the Homeschool Curriculum Sale and borrowed a ton, and ended up having to spend less than $100 total on all of our homeschool materials for the whole year.
Anyway, my son (known on this blog as Super) was in preschool here for the past two years, and was starting to read a few words at the end of last year's school year. I read quite a bit to him over the summer and he did some reading too, but it was pretty relaxed. This school year, he is going to public school Kindergarten, but only half days (it is the norm in our school district to do full days.)
In the afternoons, we do a variety of things, much of unstructred, but he is also working on the Pink Level in Montessori Language (basically 3 letter consonant-vowel-consonant words.). I have a variety of materials (most of them from Montessori For Everyone and Montessori Print Shop) but I didn't have any readers that used these kind of words. I have seen some phonic readers from Scholastic or even some of the Montessori catalogs, but they were all pretty pricey. Over the summer, I looked in the book section at one of our local thrift stores, and look at what I found!
One of the books in the set was missing, but for $1.00 for all of these books, I decided I could overlook it! LOL Here is Super reading from one of the books: