Thursday, January 8, 2009

Product Review - All About Spelling

Customizable, multisensory, step-by-step lesson plans. This is what you'll find in All About Spelling, a program we've been reviewing in our home.

To be honest, I thought I would never want a full-out spelling program. We've got far too much on our plates to spend that much time on "just spelling." What has been interesting to me as I dig into the boxes and books, though, is that this program is much more than "just spelling."

Spelling comes naturally to me, and as my children have become more advanced in their reading skills, their spelling has exponententially improved. I think, though, had I used a program like this from the beginning, we might have sharpened and sped up that process. It occured to me as I put the fun (by Ethan's standards!) magnets on our big white board, that this program is actually a lot of reading instruction, too.

All About Spelling is designed in four levels - it is not directly "grade" based. You begin at the beginning, and progress through the four levels at the pace that suits you and your child's abilities, thus not missing any vital information and "links" necessary to being a great speller. Many parents say their children are successful for the first time using this curriculum! There are awesome techniques, as well, for teaching children with special learning needs.

My children have enjoyed the games included, and I have enjoyed the individual file box system that helps identify each child's progress. I also like that even though they may each be at a different level, they can help each other and do activities together. I really appreciate the in-depth organization and order to the program that means less prep work for me. One neat option, also, is the ability to see samples of the program on the All About Spelling website.

At around $30 per level, with additional add-ons required for each student, this may be a cost-prohibitive item for some, but a very reasonable investment for others.

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