Three Tips for All About Spelling
March 7th, 2017
It’s March, and we are well over halfway through our spelling books this year - hooray! Then again, we know that sometimes spelling is hard to get to, and can easily be overlooked during a busy homeschool week. I (Jenny) am certainly guilty of that on occasion. So, how are you doing with All About Spelling?
We know we love this program, and our teachers and parents can attest to the progress and mastery that is happening with their students who are using it. But yes, it does take some one-on-one time to teach. If you’ve let spelling fall by the wayside, be encouraged that it’s never too late to jump back in, wherever you are! Keep moving forward with this program, and it will help your kids learn the rules and reasoning of spelling.
To aid you in this goal, today we have three quick tips to share for those of you teaching the spelling lessons at home, and we also invite your best AAS tips to share with our readers!
1. It would have been nice to discover this tip at the beginning of the school year, but sometimes great ideas happen mid-year and you still go with it: consider making an All About Spelling binder. In the Student pack that comes with every level, there are handy charts and lists that are often referred to (and the “Jail” page). Place these in sheet protectors and put them into a three-ring binder for easy access. As you add levels, use the cover of the student pack in a sheet protector as a “divider” between sections, and keep adding all the charts and lists for each level that you use. One bonus to organizing the resources this way, is that if you have a child who forgets something from a previous level, you can flip right back to it and review. And if you are teaching multiple kids multiple levels of AAS, all the printed resources are in one handy place. You can also keep a zippered pouch in this binder, with any little loose pieces like the segmenting tokens, extra cards, etc.
2. One of our SLOCA parents shared that she reviews all the mastered cards at the end of each trimester, rather than (or you could do it in addition to) when prompted by the teacher’s guide. This way she has a better understanding of her child’s strengths and weaknesses in spelling, which cards are truly mastered at that time, and what still needs review - this helps when writing her progress reports! It’s also nice to start the new trimester with a fresh batch of cards in the review pile.
3. We recently found this potentially smart idea on a homeschooling blog: A Time Saving Tip When Using All About Spelling. This comes from a homeschool mom who shared her trick of recording her voice using the Voice Memo app on her phone (or you could use a tablet), saying the list of words and dictation sentences, for her son to use later in the week. You can read her post to get more details (the comments are also helpful), and you'll see that she even made a YouTube video to describe what she does. Maybe an idea like this will help you save time and still accomplish the goal of getting spelling done!
Do you have any other bright ideas or solutions for getting spelling done efficiently and effectively? Please share them in the comments below!