Tagged: spelling wisdom
- Betty DickersonParticipant
I have a 12yod (who’s a reader) and twin 10yo sons. I’m wondering if I could use the same book for both children? Also, in the SW sample, I noticed that some of the passages are quite lengthy. Do you pick a sentence or two from that passage or you dictate the whole passage?
I just started dictation last year, actually I only did it a few times using selections from their reading. I found that if it was more than 2-3 sentences the children panicked!
Also, how do you fit this into your days? I need details. My children have some independent school work that they do in the mornings. Then we all meet together for Table Time. During Table Time, I was reading a selection from Hero Tales, review Latin vocab words, sing our hymn, dictation, and our history read aloud. I found that this was too much in one sitting. AFter a while, the children’s eyes would start to glaze over and my 4yr old would be going nuts finding something else to do or destroy! Dictation took alot of that time. So, when time was short for Table Time, we’d just do Hero Tales and HIstory.
I’d love to hear how you all fit it into your days and how you use it with multiple children.
I wanted to add that in the past, I would choose a passage from one of their readings that was several sentences and stop the boys after I had dictated the first sentence and let my daughter continue till the end of the passage.
The pros of this: I used Ambleside’s prepared dictation from books they were already reading so they enjoyed this alot
The cons: The chosen passage wasn’t that meaningful so I’d end up picking one from the chapter anyways, and it doesn’t necessarily cover the most used words in the English language.
That’s why I’m looking into SW.
Sonya has specific directions on how to use Spelling Wisdom. I know that you can view them on the sample download. For us, I have the children study the dictation independently because they are of an age to do that (15yo and 16yo). My 11yo, who is not in the same book as his sisters, needs me to help him along because he really struggles with spelling. I use the timer for our dictations because I do have a schedule and some passages take much longer than others. For the older ones it is 20 minutes; the younger 10. Logistically, I keep SW on my schedule daily so that I am available for dictations if people are ready (and they must be ready at least twice each week).
Like Cindy, my kids all have their own passages. They study them on their own, and then I have a space on my schedule that I dictate to each while the others are elsewhere. I’ve found it to work particularly well to have one child on the computer–typing, perhaps, or doing foreign language, while dictating to one, and then we flip. I also use a set time. I start slowly, so I begin with just a sentence or two, then I work up to doing whatever the child can do in the amount of time I allow. Like Cindy, I begin a younger child at 5 min. and work up to 10. I have an older child begin at about 10 min. and work up to about 20. Some children are quick and can get a good chunk of passage done; I have a poky one who works steadily but does not get as far in a passage. That’s OK. I like the SW because I feel I am “covering” words they’ll need to use.Sonya ShaferModerator
Hi, Betty –
Cindy and Bookworm have already given you some excellent ideas. I’ll just add a couple of thoughts and try to answer your first two questions.
I have a 12yod (who’s a reader) and twin 10yo sons. I’m wondering if I could use the same book for both children?
Yes, you can have several children all in the same book. Here are the recommended grade levels, but do what works best for your children and where they are.
Book 1 – grades 3 to 5
Book 2 – grades 5 to 7
Book 3 – grades 7 to 9
Book 4 – grades 9 to 11
Book 5 – grades 11 and 12
Two things I would recommend if you have more than one child in the same book: start them at different places in the book if possible, and do their dictations on separate days of the week. Don’t try to do them at the same time. It can cause comparison, competition, hurt feelings, frustration, and headaches that you don’t need. So even if they’re in the same book, treat the children’s dictations as completely separate events.
Also, in the SW sample, I noticed that some of the passages are quite lengthy. Do you pick a sentence or two from that passage or you dictate the whole passage?
When you get to the back of books 4 and 5, some of the exercises are multiple pages. Go ahead and have the child prepare the whole thing, but don’t try to dictate the entire exercise. (It would probably take all week!) Just select a portion to dictate. Of course, you’ll probably choose the portion that contains the word(s) the child was working on. 😉
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