Thursday, February 19, 2009

All About Spelling

I wrote a recommendation today for All About Spelling, and thought I’d put it on here too.
Well, my favorite thing for spelling is All About Spelling.  I cannot possibly say enough good things about this program.  It is more mom-intensive than some options out there.  But it isn't bad.
All About Spelling uses an Orton-Gillingham approach to spelling.  The program is multi-sensory, incredibly easy to just pick up and go, and very intuitive.  It is scripted, which can be stilted at times, but I’ve never had much of a problem taking something I understand and using my own words.  It is nice not to have to though, too!
I spend about 10-15 minutes a day, four days a week doing spelling with each of my older two.  They are significantly 'behind' in spelling though, so I spend more time with them than I necessarily would/will with the rest of my crew.  For my oldest, the time is "just" spelling.  For my second son, we are also doing reading work in that time, making sure that he is fluent in everything he can spell.
With my 2nd grader, though, I'm doing about 10 minutes, 3 days a week with AAS.  When I start my youngest son, I plan for only 1-2 days a week "officially" doing a lesson, and a few minutes of "just" reviewing stuff.  
So, AAS works by having the kids learn all the sounds of each phonogram, it has them truly listening to the individual sounds in words, it teaches them the explicit rules for various patterns (like when to use c, k, or ck), and it does so in a multi-sensory, logical way.
AAS is great for kids with learning issues (dyslexia, for instance, that being the one I care about!).  AAS is great for kids without learning issues.  
Once you get past the first few lessons, a typical lesson (which you can do in one day, or spread over a few) has you reviewing past phonograms, words and rules.  There is usually a teaching segment that you do with tiles.  You generally have the kid doing some work with tiles.  And there are 10 spelling words.  There are a bunch of additional words that you can use for additional spelling practice, or for reading practice, or you can ignore them entirely.  There are phrases and sentences to be dictated, which consist only of words the child should be able to spell based on lessons completed to that point.  There are also additional interesting little facts in the book for the teacher dealing with exceptions (like the rule that English words don't end in the letter u has an entry about the word 'thou').  For younger kids, it is interesting for you.  For older kids (my 6th grader and 4th grader), it is great to share with them too.
See my post “The Perfect Program” for more comments on All About Spelling too.

Comments from my old blog:

Jenny Bergren -

Thanks for the review, Debra.  I've been waffling on what to do about spelling.  Sequential Spelling was a nightmare this year.  My daughter hates writing so 25 words a day was frustrating for her.

Your review was thorough and very helpful. I placed my order on Sunday and can't wait for the pacage to arrive.  Ah, I hear the mail truck now! But it's only Tuesday, it can't possibly be here already.

Does your mil still live by me?  You're always welcome to stop by -)

Jenny in MN

Tuesday, March 24, 2009 - 09:48 AM
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