“Help! I need someone to make spelling EASY!”
Does this sound familiar? If so, this series of blog posts is for you!
I know all too well that spelling is not always easy. My son struggled terribly with spelling. It was out of the gut-wrenching difficulty of our experience that I developed All About Spelling with the goal of helping my son find success in spelling and reading. And in the process, I discovered something amazing. Spelling can be easy.
Over the next six weeks, I’d like to take you on a guided tour of All About Spelling and the elements that set it apart from other spelling programs. It’s these elements that make spelling easy to learn and easy to teach.
Spelling can be easy when it’s…
Children learn best when they have the opportunity to interact with the world around them. When they are able to employ their senses—sight, sound, and touch—learning takes on a whole new level of potential. When you use multisensory instruction that engages the visual, auditory, and kinesthetic pathways to a child’s brain, you provide him with greater potential for success than could ever be reached with traditional teaching methods.
“When Mom’s not happy, nobody’s happy!” The adage is even true in the area of spelling curriculum! When curriculum is hard for the teacher, it’s usually hard for the student, too. And that doesn’t make anyone happy. A good curriculum makes spelling easy for the teacher. And scripted, easy-to-teach, “open-and-go” lessons are exactly what busy homeschool parents need to help make spelling easy for everyone.
The Orton-Gillingham approach helps take the mystery out of spelling by focusing on why words are spelled the way they are. Though the English language contains just 26 letters, these letters combine to create 45 speech sounds, and there are over 250 ways to spell those sounds. But the Orton-Gillingham approach condenses the spelling of these sounds into phonograms and demystifies spelling by teaching students to apply rules and generalizations that help make what was once difficult much easier!
The goal of learning is mastery—long-term learning that “sticks.” But unless consistent review of previously taught skills is a regular part of your daily instruction, short-term learning is usually the result. Short-term learning often sets in motion a cycle of frustration as a student is forced to continually relearn old, forgotten skills. Mastery-based curriculum helps make spelling easy by making consistent daily review a priority.
There is a logical progression to teaching spelling skills. Your child’s ability to make a connection between what he’s already been taught and what he’s currently learning depends heavily on this logical approach. Instruction should be sequential and incremental—teaching skills in a logical order, gradually building from basic to more advanced skills. When you teach logically, spelling will be easier.
Teaching a child to spell is not a “one size fits all” proposition and it should not be taught as such. In order to make spelling easier for your child, consider what makes him different. Does he have special learning challenges? Does he have a limited attention span? Does he need more review to help concepts “stick”? Curriculum that enables you to individualize instruction according to your child’s specific needs makes spelling easier—for everyone.
We’ve got what it takes to make spelling easy!
Over the next six Mondays, I’ll give you a closer look at how All About Spelling incorporates all six of these elements to make your life easier—and to help your child really shine. And please feel free to ask me any questions you may have about teaching spelling. I’m here to help!