Sunday, February 15, 2015
Spell to Write and Read
Spell to Write and Read
I started using this curriculum with my 5 year old directly after the "Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons" book. We are still using it and loving it. My son is in 3rd grade now.
What I like:
1) You can use it for grades K-12 without having to buy new books each year. You need one new workbook each year that is $6. That makes this curriculum crazy affordable.
2) I love that this curriculum teaches the 70 phonograms (different combinations of sounds) in the English language independently. Before starting the curriculum, there are flashcards with all of these phonograms. Each card has the letter combination on the front and the different sounds on the back. There are game suggestions for interesting ways for your child to learn these. My son's favorite game is where he starts on one side of the room and me on the other. I hold up the card and if he gets all of the sounds for the phonogram correct, he takes a step forward. If he misses one or more sounds, I tell him the correct sound and he takes a step back. Learning the phonograms like this has greatly helped his reading. There are tests in the program to determine what grade level your child is spelling/reading, and my son is testing around the 5th grade level even though his is only in 1st grade. He is picking up chapter books and reading them for fun.
3) This curriculum teaches 99% of the rules in the English language. There are rules that I didn't know! There are rule cards like the phonogram cards that you hold up and have the child tell you the rules. We haven't worked on these quite as much, but I plan to get into these more this next school year. Most curriculum do not teach as many rules as this one.
4) When learning a new word, this curriculum uses many different senses. You read the word out loud, use it in a sentence, have the child repeat the word, sound out the word, spell the word, and then read the word after he has spelled it.
5) It is a Christian curriculum. I always prefer Christian materials.
What I didn't like:
Switching to this Spell to Write and Read curriculum after the previous "Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons" was a huge learning style/curve for me because the previous book had each lesson spelled out for the teacher--I just sat down and read it with my son. This curriculum is NOT that kind of curriculum. Most of it is suggestions and ideas that are not cut and dried as the child is first starting to figure out the sounds. I was really lost for the first two weeks of trying to figure out this curriculum. Basically you practice the phonograms until the child has them down and then move on to the spelling lists. Now it is easy, since I mostly just have my son learn 5 new words per day from the spelling list and go over the rules for those words that day as well as the extra grammar ideas that the curriculum recommends for that section (words are broken into sections with 20 words per section). Now that I have the program figured out, I love it and have been recommending it to all of my homeschooling friends. I have about 4 other friends who have chosen to use this curriculum also and they all love it as well.
Here are some samples of my son's spelling book:
This was his first page for List A:
This is from List E, which he did at the end of first grade and again at the beginning of second grade:
This is List M-1, which he just completed (he is nearly done with 3rd grade)
We focused on the Phonograms for the first couple of years and read the rules as we went. Now, in 3rd Grade, we have been focusing on the rules more and he is learning them well... as have I, lol.