I have been noticing an issue with my 8yo DD’s reading that is carrying over to her spelling. I haven’t begun any formal spelling on a consistent basis but do have All About Spelling (I think I have the materials for Level 1 & 2 but the teacher’s guide is only Level 2). I haven’t done CM since the beginning & am still working on making CM our main approach, which means that copywork has been intermittent. Ok, that all said, what I’m seeing is she doesn’t utilize her phonics well to figure out words because she largely taught herself to read by sight when she was 4yo (of course I was responsible for some of that as well but think I went through some phonics too- hard to remember as that has been awhile). She did have phonics through her Kindergarten year because we did an online public school & exposure through my teaching her or various other things. She was able to do the phonics fine but still largely read by sight & had a tendency to glance at words, see some letters that would be in a word she knew & just read it as that word. I would/do stop her & get her to look at it more carefully but there is typically a battle before she’ll just stop & sound out the word instead of guessing different words (definitely not “gentle” teaching because I get very frustrated as does she). Even when I stop her to get her to re-look at the word & sound it out, she will try to make it sound out to what she thinks it is. As an example, when she was in Kindergarten, the teacher did a test where she had to take non-sense words, sound out & say them…perhaps “fim” she’d say was “firm” or “stot” she’d say was “state” (not actual ones she did just an example). For the test, I stopped her & told her these weren’t real words so she just needed to sound out, & she did that (though I could tell she had to really force herself to do that). Here we are 3 years later, & I’d say she reads pretty well (typically can read books at least a grade level ahead & has done well on reading portions of the CAT) but this is still an issue…not taking time to sound out things, just guessing based on seeing some letters from a word she knows then not being able to get away from the thought of the predetermined word to use her phonics to sound out. Plus some of the “advanced phonics” such as blends, “ir/er/ur”, etc. are a consistent issue when she spells (not with reading if she stops to sound out). With spelling it is similar I think, she leaves out sounds…for ex, she was spelling “thinking” as “thiking” until I kept saying it with emphasis & telling her to say it or “truth” without the “r” (not to mention wanting to use “oo” instead of “u” but I get that is confusing). So, thoughts about what might be going on or how to fix it? I want to get this corrected now because I think it is increasingly becoming an issue even if it is just us getting frustrated with each other (me trying to work on it with her & her not liking the challenge) & that she doesn’t enjoy reading nearly as much as I’d like.
Dd8 sounds VERY similar. We started AAS this fall. I decided that as long as her comprehension was good with her independent reading I wasn’t going to subject her to reading/phonics lessons at this point. AAS uses pretty much the same basic system for teaching reading and spelling though so by doing AAS for spelling, she is picking up on some of the reading things she missed out on. One example is that AAS goes through breaking down words into syllables for spelling. Dd had no idea what syllables even were and couldn’t easily break down bigger words to see the smaller parts to read them. Now she is learning to pay attention to the parts of the whole.
I don’t know if this really is an issue with reading, basic vs intensive phonics, spelling, visualizing a word, learning style, or anything else. I’ve stopped being concerned with that though. Whatever it is, or however we got here, we found something that is helping dd’s spelling as well as reading, utilizes short lessons, and causes little to no stress for either one of us. It works for us. It may or may not be something that works for you.KarenParticipant
If you start All About Spelling, do you have to start at the 1st level? OR is it grade-level based?suzukimomParticipant
AAS, you always start at level 1.
AAS is always started with Level 1. Dd finished it in about 3 months I think. It was 1 day per lesson for most of them with a few taking 2 or 3 days. Level 2 is taking 3-4 days per lesson now because we keep each session short. Longer lessons or two sessions per day would speed things up but I’m much less interested in speed than retention and a positive attitude surrounding our learning environment.greenebaltsParticipant
Your dd also sounds a lot like ours. In 3rd grade, her reading and comprehension was post high school, however, she could not spell a lick and it was very frustrating for her as it was holding back her writing, which she was greatly interested in.
We too use AAS, however, I didn’t see noticeable results until level 3, which we used last year in 4th grade. This year, due to my desire to speed her along, 🙁 I switched to Logic of English. Needless to say, after the first 12 weeks/lessons, we switched back to AAS. When something’s working, don’t change it! :-p …Yes, I learned a great lesson from this.
Anyway, I’m convinced AAS is a solid program. One thing I really like and was more noticeable to me after trying LOE is AAS teaches a concept (phonogram) and then gives practice in using it before moving on. I would say it’s more of a mastery program. There is also review along the way, but the lessons are not random. As you work through the levels, you can see how the program builds. It’s multi sensory based on the Orton Gillingham method of teaching, which is perfect for students with different learning styles.
As the levels progress, AAS provides dictation exercises, starting first with a word, then a phrase, and finally complete sentences. I agree with Emily, that AAS is easily adaptable to Charlotte’s method. It allows for short lessons. I would also say AAS has given our dd confidence in her spelling/writing ability, making her feel like a born person 🙂
As we work through Level 4 and I see our dd’s progression, I’ve become an advocate of AAS. So much so that I joined their affiliate program!
Thanks all! Been busy over Christmas so forgot to check back. I think I’ll try to incorporate AAS in our schedule. Do you think I could use the Level 2 teacher’s guide & just go through the first lessons more slowly? I dint have the guide for Level 1 but recall the Level 2 guide going over things from 1.I have all the materials for Level 1 otherwise. Obviously I will invest in the guide if it’s necessary 🙂greenebaltsParticipant
I personally feel strongly about the Instructor Guide because it gives you all the information you need to teach and learn, including the dictation exercises. I think you may be able to get by without the student packet if you have the letter tiles and IG. It would be more work, but could be done. Especially being somewhat new to the program, I think the IG is key. Also, Level 1 is the base of all other levels. I’m sure you could find one used.
I thought about the same thing before we began. I ended up getting levels 1 and 2 from a friend who didnt want to split them so it made up my mind for me! Looking back, I’m so glad we did level one all the way through. Even during it with the initial ease of the lessons I was wondering if it was worth it but when we started level 2 and things kicked up a notch I was very happy we had completed level 1 first.
Thanks! I’ll look for the Level 1 guide. I believe I have all the other materials for L1 & L2.caedmynParticipant
I was coming here to ask this very thing for my 9 YO 3rd grader. She’s a great reader, but it’s very difficult to get her to sound out long words that she doesn’t know, and she’s a poor speller–tends to spell “street” as “steert” for example.
Is there any other program out there that would help with this issue? It looks like AAS is teacher-intensive, and I’m afraid it wouldn’t get done regularly, or I’d dread having to do it every day…would much prefer something that could be done fairly independently if possible. I was thinking about using Spelling You See next year but am not sure if it would help or not.retrofamParticipant
I am trying Spelling You See next year, and AAS is my back up idea if it is needed. SYS has spelling patterns(rules) and provides context. AAS is too teacher intensive for me, but I will squeeze it in later if it is really needed.
Sequential Spelling with the dvds is another option.HSMAMAParticipant
I’m another vote for AAS. I wouldn’t ignore the reading issue though. You can use AAS to reinforce phonics rules and then I’d spend some time each day having her read aloud to you and use a notched curser card. Only reveal one letter/sound chunk at a time and then have her read the word again quickly. Another thing we’ve found to work is word builders. I use the white board and write each section on a new line: f, fi, fish (for example) It helps them to track from left to right and “see” all the sounds.
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