Sunday, June 19, 2011

All About Spelling Review

All About Spelling is as the title suggests a homeschool spelling program. It comprises 7 levels which do not correlate to grade level. Currently only the first 6 levels are available, the 7th level is due to be released anytime. An average student working for 10 mins per school day could probably complete 2 levels in 1 year.

This program uses rule based spelling instruction and strives for mastery. Eg - one rule learnt in level 1 is "c says /s/ before e, i & y". The student will then learn how to decide which /k/ to use at the beginning of a word trying c first then changing to k if the c makes the wrong sound. As the rule becomes firm and the child has practiced making the right choice it becomes an automated decision.

A whiteboard and tiles are used so that a young student doesn't tire and also to make the program more hands on. When starting level 1 you begin with a limited number of phonograms but as you move through the levels more and more phonograms are added until you have learnt them all. When displaying them on the board they are grouped together by type. Eg - the vowel teams are all grouped together, the consonant suffixes are all grouped.

Each level has 1 teacher manual. Within the manual there are steps. Each level has a different number of steps. Level 1 has 24 while level 3 has 28. At the beginning of each step there is review of previously mastered rules and phonograms and also rules and phonograms that still need mastering. The idea isn't to get bogged down here in the review just to make sure you do some daily.

The step is then presented on the whiteboard using the tiles. Only once the teacher feels the student is confident with the material should they ask the student to begin writing on paper. There are 10 words to spell at the end of the step and also dictation phrases and later sentences. If the student misses lots of words then they have not understood that step and should continue to work there before moving on. Only once mastery of that step is achieved should the student move on.

There is some flexibility with the dictation phrases and sentences. If the student finds the material easy and doesn't make any mistakes you might choose to only complete a third or half of the phrases/sentences. Similarly if they need more work there is plenty of material to expand the step.

This program is very teacher intensive. The student cannot be left to work on this alone at all.

We LOVE this program. It is explicit, very easy to implement and produces outstanding results!

** Please note that we do not receive any kick back for endorsing this program. We just like to share when things are working well for us. **

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