1,338

Why We Teach Reading and Spelling Separately

You may have noticed that language arts programs can be divided into two types: all-in-one programs and single-subject programs.

  • All-in-one programs combine reading and spelling in a single lesson, and the lesson often includes handwriting, grammar, and composition as well. When the student learns to read the word bread, for example, he learns to spell the word in the same lesson.
  • Single-subject programs, on the other hand, teach reading and spelling in separate lessons. All About Reading and All About Spelling fall into this category.

You may be wondering why we don’t combine our programs into a single All About® program. After all, wouldn’t it be more efficient to teach multiple subjects in the same program?

That’s a great question! Read on to discover the two main reasons we teach these subjects separately.

Reason #1. Most Children Learn to Read More Quickly than They Learn to Spell

Simply put, reading is easier than spelling.

In reading, a child decodes the written word. Phonogram AY always says long A, so once a child learns that, reading words like stay and display is a straightforward task.

Even with a more complex phonogram—such as phonogram EA, which can say three sounds (/ē/, /ĕ/, or /ā/)—students can try out each of the three sounds to see which forms a real word. And the fact that students learn to recite the phonogram sounds in order of frequency is also helpful. In a word like thread, the student who tries out the first, most common sound of EA quickly realizes that /thrēd/ isn’t a real word, so she tries the second sound of EA, resulting in the real word /thrĕd/.

But in spelling, a child encodes the word. Ideally, there would be just one way to write each sound, but the reality is that there are many ways to write each sound. If a child wants to write the word great or neighbor, for example, he has to decide how the sound of long A should be written. Choices include A, AI, A-consonant-E, EIGH, EI, EY, or AY. There are some generalizations that can help narrow down the options, but the fact is that there are 250 ways to spell the 45 speech sounds of the English language.

So even though reading and spelling are flip sides of the same coin, reading is easier.

Here’s Proof that Reading Is Easier

Let’s do a quick demonstration. Read the words below.

Teach Reading Spelling Separately - All About Learning Press

You didn’t have any trouble reading them, did you?

But what if I asked you to spell them? (Without looking first, of course!) How would you do?

If you think you would have spelled all these words correctly, congratulations! You’re probably a better speller than most adults. Though most adults can easily read these words, many would misspell them.

Teach Reading Spelling Separately - All About Learning Press

The Same Is True for Your Child

With a basic understanding of phonics, a child should be able to read the word special without much trouble. But spelling the word special is a greater challenge because of that tricky /sh/ sound in the middle of the word.

  • Is it spelled speshul, just like it sounds?
  • Or is it spetial like martial?
  • Or should it be spelled spesial with the same word ending as controversial?

See what I mean? Is it any wonder that so many children struggle with spelling? And that leads to the second reason we teach reading and spelling separately.

Reason #2: All-In-One Programs Force You to Choose between Two Scenarios

When you try to teach your child to read and spell the same words at the same time, you guarantee only one thing: one of these critically important subjects will fall by the wayside. That’s because there are two possible scenarios with programs that combine reading and spelling:

Scenario #1. Your child learns to read the words in the lesson, but he can’t move on to the next lesson because he’s still learning to spell those words. Without knowing it, you have chosen to focus on spelling at the expense of reading.

Teach Reading Spelling Separately - All About Learning Press

Scenario #2. Your child learns to read the words in the lesson, but although he’s still learning to spell the words, you decide to allow him to move on to the next lesson. You’ve chosen to focus on reading, so your child’s spelling suffers.

Teach Reading Spelling Separately - All About Learning Press

As you can see, it’s a no-win situation. All-in-one programs force you to choose one subject to the detriment of the other. But I don’t believe you should have to sacrifice your child’s learning in any subject.

That’s Why We Teach Reading and Spelling Separately

With our single-subject approach, your child can succeed at both subjects. He can progress as quickly as possible in reading …

Teach Reading Spelling Separately - All About Learning Press

… and he can take as much time as he needs in spelling.

Teach Reading Spelling Separately - All About Learning Press

With this approach, your child can more easily achieve mastery in both reading and spelling, without sacrificing learning in either subject.

Do you think that teaching reading and spelling separately would make a difference for your kids?

< Previous Post  Next Post >

Leave a Comment

Mahua Roychoudhury

says:

Thank you Marie, I agree with you. I understood this last year when my son started learning spellings. So I took up teaching spellings separately.

Ndileka

says:

Very helpful. Thank you.

Zaphina Hosein Chin

says:

I am a teacher in a kindergarten class and I have parents who are totally against the concept of invented spelling. Any suggestions on how to defend my position?

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Zaphina,
I’m sorry, we cannot give you suggestions on how to defend invented spelling, as we agree with your students’ parents. Here is our article on Invented Spelling.

abd

says:

hello
english is not me first language and I’m 30 years , I know i’m old .
can you have advice about improving spelling , or any source can help.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Hello,
Spelling English is difficult for even native speakers; it can be very difficult for those learning English as a second language.

Our All About Spelling program has been successfully used with English language learners and with adults. However, All About Spelling is not designed to be used independently. Do you have someone that can work with you with All About Spelling? Even just an hour a week would work.

Please let us know if you need help getting started.

abd

says:

thank you for answer , did you have online course ? what you sagest for self-learning ?
many thanks

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

We do not have an online course or any program designed for self learning. One of the key components of our programs is the interaction and immediate feedback from a teacher, which isn’t possible with the self learning model.

Catia

says:

At what point would grammar begin being taught? Or is it something incorporated into your programs?

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Catia,
All About Reading and All About Spelling only cover grammar as it relates to reading and spelling. For example, when the suffix -ed is taught, students do learn what past tense means and how some words change completely instead of simply taking on the suffix. However, the programs do not discuss parts of speech, punctuation, and so on.

As for when grammar should be taught, you may found this article on planning the sequence of Language Arts helpful. You want your child to be doing well with reading and spelling before beginning formal grammar.

a reply

There are a number of grammar programs available that have either multi-sensory components or an incremental approach. Some of the programs focus exclusively on grammar, while some include writing as well. Here are a few suggestions:

Winston Grammar is a hands-on program with color-coded cards, and is generally aimed at students in 4th to 7th grades.

Easy Grammar features an incremental approach and includes topics such as usage and punctuation, for 2nd grade and up.

Essentials in Writing is described by author Matthew Stephens as a Math-U-See approach to writing. In the elementary levels, this program incorporates grammar with writing. The lessons are presented in short video segments of 3 to 5 minutes and then the student works on the concept that was taught. This is a multisensory and incremental program that is very easy to use. There are levels for 1st-12th grades.

The Sentence Family is a simple and fun program aimed at 3rd through 6th graders. The program uses drawing along with a story line to teach the nine parts of speech and how they relate to each other.

Fix It Grammar is incremental and uses very short lessons. Each level teaches grammar using sentences from a single story, so there is the additional fun of seeing the story slowly unfold. The teacher’s manual is very comprehensive, and even includes advanced concepts so the teacher can answer questions a curious student may have. The youngest the program is recommended for is 3rd grade, although it is appropriate for older students as well.

Hands-On English with Linking Blocks is an intriguing program that uses wooden blocks and flash cards for a truly hands-on approach.

Analytical Grammar teaches a mastery of grammar by working on it for short grammar focused units once a year for 2 to 3 years. Junior Analytical Grammar is for 4th or 5th graders, with Analytical Grammar for 6th to 9th graders.

Hopefully this gives you some to consider!

Sharon Ebersole

says:

My weakest area is grammar, out of the 7 companies you recommended is there one for a parent like me to implement.

I am having huge success with the programs my students are using in AAS and AAR. You have helped me feel like a super star! Thank you

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Sharon,
I can only give you my personal experience, but since I consider grammar my weakest subject by far, my experience may help.

My older two children used Winston Grammar in junior high. They used it independently and I simply corrected their work. Both did fairly well with it, but if they disagreed with the answer key they could bring up a strong argument as to why they were right. They were convincing, but I didn’t know grammar well enough to defend the answer key and the answer key never had explanations or discussions to expand the learning. My biggest problem with Winston Grammar, however, is that after my students completed it they still struggled to be able to discuss grammar usage or misusage in their own writing. To me, the point of learning grammar is to have a vocabulary and understand with which to discuss your own writing, so I felt let down a bit with Winston Grammar.

With my younger three students, the ones that have struggled greatly with reading, spelling, and writing, I knew Winston Grammar would not work well. I researched grammar curriculum for a year before deciding upon The Sentence Family followed by Fix It Grammar. I’m not sure The Sentence Family was necessary, but it was a fun and very hands-on primer on parts of speech and my kids loved it. We were able to complete it in a month without hurrying.

We are now within a month of finishing the first book of Fix It Grammar and I am confident I made the right choice. My children are understanding it, as am I, and the Teacher’s Guide has lots of information for questions or advanced concepts that we might wonder about. It takes only 5 to 10 minutes a day, so it fits in with the short lesson philosophy of AAR and AAS too.

The one change I make to Fix It Grammar is that I allow my kids to mark parts of speech with the color they learned in The Sentence Family. For example, nouns are blue and verbs are red. They are learning and using the names, but I have found that thinking and marking sentences in color helps their understanding and makes it a bit more fun too.

On the other hand, Analytical Grammar, starting with the junior level, was my second choice so I think it is worth looking into as well. Excellence in Writing looks like a great choice if you would prefer to combine grammar and writing into a single curriculum. Hands-On English with Linking Blocks is very intriguing, but it was not written for classroom use, so it seemed to me to assume the teacher was confident in grammar. As I said, grammar is my weakest subject, so I felt that Hands-On English with Linking Blocks would be way too difficult for me to implement. My only experience with Easy Grammar was that my girlfriend used it for years. I looked it over and quickly dismissed it as an option as it was just workbook pages without anything to make it hands-on and my kids need hands-on.

There are so many options out there; it can be overwhelming! When I evaluate programs I look at several things:

What worked about what we used previously? Did we like anything?
What didn’t work and why?
What do I need as a teacher from a grammar program? (Do I need scripting, examples, teaching helps etc…?)
What do my students need? (Think about visual layout, color vs. black & white, mom-taught vs. independent or DVD teacher, hands-on, and so on.)
Look at samples online (or in person if possible), and let your kids look at them. Even young students can have opinions on curriculum that can give you insight that can be very helpful in your decision making.

I hope this helps some.

Jennifer Gacka

says:

Thank you for articulating this. I never knew the two were not to be taught at the same time.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

You are welcome, Jennifer. We do have important reasons for it.

Bethany

says:

This is very helpful! I used AAS with my older son (who was already a fluent reader), but instead started AAR with my daughter who is learning how to read. Now I’m also tutoring a 10yo boy in reading and spelling and was tempted to try to teach reading through AAS, but now I won’t! I’ll be reading the post about how to do both subjects one after the other.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Bethany,
I’m glad this post was helpful to you. Please let us know if you have any questions or run into any difficulties.

Elizabeth Childers

says:

My daughter is progressing much better now that we separated reading and spelling.

Belle

says:

At what point of AAR should you start Level 1 of AAS? My 5-year-old just finished AAR Pre Reading level.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Belle,
We recommend waiting to begin All About Spelling 1 until after your student has completed All About Reading 1. While learning to read, students pick up basic skills that will enable them to spell more easily. This article, All About Spelling – The Right Time to Start, has more information.

B

says:

Thank you, Robin. I looked for that information but did not look hard enough on your blog. I apologize.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

No problem, Belle. I just linked to that blog post as it has all the reasoning why we recommend waiting, in case you were wondering why.

Cheryl

says:

As my son said, “Doing All About Reading makes you a great speller!” All About Spelling is going great for him after 2 years of AAR.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

We love hearing this level of confidence from our students, Cheryl!

Nicole

says:

Wonderful post! Thank you so much! I’m already learning so much just by reading your blog. I self identify as stealth dyslexic. I fell through the cracks in school. I picked up that my daughter struggles with much of the same things I did (and sometimes still do). I’m excited to get started with my DD with AAS and AAR. Much needed. I’m hoping to learn along side with my daughter.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Nicole,
I glad that you are finding our blog so helpful. Let us know if you have any questions, or if you need help with placement or anything else. And many (most?) of us parents find ourselves learning along with our children, even if we didn’t struggle with school!

Karen

says:

I used AAS when I homeschooled my daughter, and found this program to be exactly what I was looking for. My daughter was reading two grade levels above her age, yet her spelling was atrocious. She is an excellent speller now, and I attribute this to her early exposure to AAS. Thank you for such an excellent product!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

We love to hear about students’ spelling successes! Thank you, Karen.

Sara Johnson

says:

I love this article. Tis true separating the two gives them their own power and significance within the eye of the child. I too teach the two separate for this reason.

Thank youfor this confirmation.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

You’re welcome, Sara!

Britney

says:

Enjoy seeing concrete reasoning on why spelling and reading should be taught separately.

Melissa

says:

Thank you! It’s so helpful to hear that Spelling and Reading don’t have to progress at the same pace.

Patsy Foy

says:

I’m using both with my special needs daughter. It’s too soon to tell a huge difference, but there is a huge difference in her interest & enthusiasm while doing spelling & reading.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Patsy,
Interest and enthusiasm go a long way toward success! I hope to hear great things about her progress soon.

Heather

says:

Is there a recommended schedule for teaching both subjects in the week? (since they are both teacher-led). We have a large family, love AAR & AAS, but I struggle with teaching everyone…any tips?

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Heather,
We recommend spending 20 minutes per day for All About Reading and 20 minutes per day for All About Spelling. This blog post explains how a mom taught AAR and AAS in one 35 minutes block a day to her kids, which might be a good option for you.

I have found that I need to make keeping transition times down a priority in order to work with everyone one-on-one. I suggest stacking everyone’s spelling and reading things up at your spot at the table (or your desk, or wherever you work with the children) and have each one come to you. Explain that you won’t be waiting for them to finish what they are doing when it is their spelling or reading time, but that when you call they need to stop and come (if you have a kid who struggles with transitions you could give them a 5 minute warning while you are finishing up with the previous child). You will have to decide which order to work with your kids, as you know them. Some little ones cause less disruption if they work with mom first, others do better if they get to play until mom is ready for them. That sort of thing.

While you are working with your children on spelling and reading, they need to have things they need to be doing when it is not their turn. They could be doing school things, like handwriting and math. If you have to teach a lesson for math before they do it, you could try teaching the math lesson the day before. Some kids will be fine with this, some will not. Or they could be other things, like chores or piano practice.

I don’t know how many students you have or how many of them are in AAS, AAR, or both, but with this minimizing transition times, you can teach 3 kids AAS and AAR, 20 minutes each, in just 2 hours. More students in your homeschool obviously means more time, but that is true no matter what curriculum you use.

I hope this helps some. I know it’s hard to juggle the demands of teaching many students with the demands of home, but it can be done. Mostly I think it takes either great organization and scheduling, or it takes a lot of trial and error. I fall into the second category. ;D

Please let me know if you have any further questions.

Meg Hutsell

says:

I’ve been looking at this curriculum for a while. My daughter has auditory processing difficulties and her speech therapist recommended the Orton Gillingham approach. There are a few other programs out there but this one keeps coming back to me. We’re going to take the plunge and see what happens. I’m praying for great results!

Sara

says:

Thank you so much! Incredible resource!

LLW

says:

We struggled with reading comprehension but couldn’t figure out why. It turned out to be a spelling issue. Once she knew the rules of spelling the words in front of her came alive and we jumped multiple grade levels worth of comprehension between AAS books 1 and 3.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

LLW,
A similar thing happen with my son too! He told me that reading is easier when he uses spelling.

Hoosier Mom

says:

I’m looking forward to the multi-sensory approach of AAS for my son. He loves to read, but the spelling curriculum we’ve been using is rather dull. It’s reassuring to me that he doesn’t have to be at the same level with reading and spelling.

Betty

says:

We love AAS, my son is a strong reader but needs a multi sensory approach to spelling.

julie elmore

says:

I’m so excited to teach my children with All About Spelling. I’ve never been a strong speller, so I’m hoping to give my children the advantage.

Vivian

says:

I completely agree that the decoding and encoding functions are quite distinct and have found it to be borne out in practice. Among my children, my most dedicated bookworm is also my worst speller, which was confounding to me until I understood the processes better. We now use and love AAS!

Ranjini

says:

Hi, I personally noticed my child finding difficult in spelling, Thanks for your advice to teach her spelling separately

Carol

says:

This is helpful – my twins were having reading difficulties and I had delayed worrying about spelling until they could comfortably read. They are now starting to ask me how to spell words – so I’ll start them on the spelling work now.

Faisa Jama

says:

We love the program. We are using AAS second year now. My six year old is on book 2 now and he loves it. It’s one of thelessons that he looks forward to do. My yoingest wants to learn reading and I’m about to buy AAR soon for him.

Kelley T

says:

I have one child doing AAS and another doing AAR. My oldest doing AAS, is really poor at spelling, but a strong reader. She finds the program too simple, however there are so many little tips and tricks that she just had not gotten over the years in public school. We do 2-3 lessons a day filling in the gaps. My youngest is dyslexic and actually enjoys it, but we may only get to 1/2 a lesson, and that’s ok for us. We are in it for the long haul… from start to finish. This is an awesome program and we are better off for having it.

Gale

says:

This makes such as lot of sense!

Laverne

says:

Does AAR focus on phonics as much as AAS?

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Laverne,
Yes. Both AAS and AAR are complete phonics programs. AAS teaches words from the spelling angle, and AAR teaches words from the reading angle.

All About Reading includes research-based instruction in decoding skills, fluency, automaticity, comprehension, vocabulary, and lots and lots of reading practice. All About Spelling focuses instead on encoding skills, spelling rules, and other strategies that help children become good spellers.

I hope this answers your question, but please let me know if not.

Rebecca

says:

I would like to know if the AAR Program addresses phonemic awareness before delving in to the phonics portion of the program.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Rebecca,
Yes! All About Reading Pre-reading level works with phonological (phonemic) awareness as well as letter knowledge, print awareness, listening comprehension, and motivation to read. These are the Big 5 Readiness Skills for Reading Success. Phonological awareness is the focus of the “Language Exploration” portion of every Lesson. You can see a few of them in our sample lessons of our Pre-reading level.

Please let me know if you have further questions.

Hope K

says:

We are almost done with level 1, my daughter is showing more interest in how things are spelled. She is using her letter tiles to attempt spelling…. cant wait to move on to spelling!

Lacy van Vuuren

says:

I definitely think that a separate spelling system would benefit my children. They are great readers, but spelling gives them some trouble. I would love to use AAS to improve their abilities.

Elissa Hardy

says:

Thank you this helps me plan this coming school year.

Tracy

says:

Makes so much sense!

Zer

says:

Just got Level 1 and can’t wait to start it.

Kim

says:

I knew the importance of encoding vs decoding skills but we began using All About Spelling Before All About Reading had been created and i tried to modify lessons from the spelling to help with reading lessons, but that did not work. I was so thankful for the creation of the reading program. My older children have benefited from these programs and I am looking forward to using them with my younger children.

Sasha

says:

This is such great information! Having a child that is a struggling reader, I feel a lot less stress knowing that I don’t need to teach spelling right now. That can come later when he has a better grasp on his reading.

Jennifer

says:

Nevermind, I hadn´t seen the video! Thanks!

Jennifer

says:

Hello, Thank you for your post, but I am still unsure of what order you teach it in. Do you teach one day of reading, and then one day of spelling? or do you teach the entire reading curriculum first, and once they have a good handle of that do you teach the spelling curriculum?
Thank you,

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Jennifer,
We recommend beginning with reading. Then, once a student has completed All About Reading level 1, or the equivalent reading level, add All About Spelling 1 into your day as well.

Spend just 20 minutes a day, most days a week, on reading. This blog post, Reading: how much time should I spend?, explains this further. When you add spelling, you will then spend 20 minutes on spelling most days of the week as well. Spelling: how much time should I spend? Once you are doing both reading and spelling, you will do both each day but allow your student to progress in each program separately, as his or her own individual pace.

I hope this clears everything up for you, but if not please let me know.

Laura A

says:

Thank you for this post it makes things make so much more sense!

Thanks Miss Debbie. I watched with my mom. She’s very excited and I’m getting there. School starts in a few days.

Kara Proffer

says:

Thanks for the great ideas!!!

Mrs C

says:

wonderful video – makes sense – thank you

Brie

says:

I never thought about learning this way. I was a natural speller and caught on to reading quickly. I tend to “see” things in words when I think, and don’t always realize others don’t think the same way I do.
I’m glad I found this blog post. My mom homeschooled me and my younger siblings. After many trials and errors through us older ones she suggested I use this program for my son. I trusted her advice (mainly because she has been doing this for 22+ years) but it is nice reading WHY it works. Thanks!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Brie,
You think like my oldest son! I was shocked when he told me he could see words in his mind when he spoke or listened. I find that almost impossible to imagine, as it is laborious and slow for me to form the look of a single word in my mind. I find it fascinating to discuss how people think differently.

Jennifer H

says:

I never thought about it, but it does make sense. I’m glad to know this before I wasted time trying to do both at the same time!

Lauren

says:

This makes so much sense and is something I never really thought about before. Thanks for another insightful article!

Stephanie

says:

This makes complete sense. Thank you for taking the time to explain

Erica

says:

This makes so much sense. All four of my kids are using all about reading and all about spelling. I can see the difference in how they pick up reading and spelling. I don’t know what we would do without your spelling and reading programs. They are such a blessing and so easy to use and teach from. We use all about reading level 4 and 3, all about reading pre reading and spelling level 2. I am so thankful for your programs!

C fo

says:

That’s awesome!

D Boggs

says:

Thank you for the insight of your program. Thank you also for sharing all the wonderful tips for teaching.

Meg

says:

Thanks for such a good explanation!

Olivia

says:

It’s great to read such a clear explanation of why these two subjects should be taught separately!

a

says:

Separating reading and spelling instruction is even more important in children with learning differences. We actually go a step further, and separate any skills that are not at the same level: handwriting, spelling, composition, reading, and content (history, science, math). Otherwise, weaker writers can be trapped at the level of their writing skill, instead of flying ahead at the level of, for example, their science or history comprehension.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Great point! I like to keep things like history and science oral and hands-on for that reason too.

Tabitha M.

says:

I am shocked by the words I could read but not spell correctly! My autocorrect on my phone isn’t as shocked by this. Thank you for such a wonderful explanation!

Melissa

says:

We use AAS and loving it! A bonus is I am learning right along with my child.

Amberleigh

says:

This makes so much sense, and we’re so thrilled we found these programs.

Honey L

says:

I have friends who use AAS and love it!

This is so good to know! As a homeschool mom there’s often so much pressure to prove that I’m doing it right and my kids are thriving. I was once criticized that my 2nd grader seemed to have no spelling skills. I knew that reading needed to happen first because of reading something you posted awhile back so I stood up for my daughter and myself. She is now in third grade and into the second all about spelling and doing wonderfully! Thank you!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Lindsay,
As a fellow homeschool mom, this frustrates me to no end. Local schools can graduate students that cannot read fast enough to sing along with a slow song (true story that I witnessed personally), but we have to defend our 3rd grader that misspells homeschool on a 4H form (this one was my own kid). Sigh.

It’s great to hear that your daughter is doing wonderfully now!

Alysia

says:

I just started my kids on all about reading, and I love it! For the first time my son was proud of himself. Thank you!

Kirsten Turner

says:

After trying many different reading curriculums, tears, and frustration….we finally discovered All About Reading!! The hands on approach has made a huge difference in his ability to learn how to read. So we ordered All About Spelling too! Last year reading and spelling were fun!! I was super intimated by the program at first, but it is so easy to teach! I love the open and go style of the teacher’s book. We are looking forward to another year with All About Learning!

Tiffany

says:

I’ve tried it the other way/teaching both at the same time, and have come back to this approach…and come back to AAS/AAR.

Katherine

says:

I was recently told that focusing on spelling would help my daughters unlock reading. I had not thought of why until I read this post. It’s not a simple path one way or another! Thank you for this insight!

Nicole M.

says:

My daughter (9 yo) is a better speller than a reader. It’s difficult for her to slow down enough to read through a larger word, sounding it out. We’re almost finished with AAS Level 3 and have just started AAR Level 3. I’m so appreciative of your program…I had never taught my older two kids to read (they learned in private school)…my youngest is the first one I taught to read…and we love your program. Thanks for the giveaways!

Rasa

says:

My 8-year-old daughter is a much better reader than speller, so your post makes perfect sense to me! We did not use AAR for learning to read, but are working slowly and patiently through AAS after realizing that a typical, word-list-based spelling program was not producing any results. We are in the middle of AAS3 now. My daughter’s spelling skills are at about grade level, whereas her reading skills (based on the Lexile measure) are several grades ahead. I am wondering if her spelling skills will ever catch up to ger reading. Unfortunately, this gap damages her confidence in her writing abilities. She knows immediately when she is making a spelling mistake (the word does not “look right”), but unfortunately she doesn’t always know how to fix the problem, which makes her very self-conscious about her writing. Do you have any advice for this child? Thank you!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Rasa,
Yes, her spelling will catch up! Or rather, she will be able to spell at a high level of mastery, but as this article shows it is normal for adults to read at a higher level than they can spell (I have to look up entrepreneur every time I use that word!).

You may consider teaching your daughter about “first drafts”. A very effective writing method is to allow the first draft to be as wrong and awful as it needs to be in order to get words and ideas down on paper. This is also called “freewriting”. Brave Writer is a writing curriculum that makes extensive use of freewriting, and they have a free ebook on freewriting available from their homepage.

The gist is that it doesn’t matter if she spells correctly or not in the first draft, just write. You (mom) won’t even read what she wrote; she can read it to you. Then, the following day she can go back with your help and correct spelling, change sentences, fix errors, and so on. This revision and editing could take as many days as she needs until she is happy with it.

This actually is somewhat common for students. When students are writing, they so many things to focus on: content, creativity, organization, punctuation, spelling, grammar, capitalization, what kind of audience they are addressing, and more. It’s a lot to think about at once for anyone, but it can be overwhelming for beginning writers! Even adult writers need to take time to rewrite and edit their work (and sometimes there are still mistakes!). Our students definitely need a separate editing time if the piece is going to be polished at all. Even professional writers need editors, so our students will too. You may find this article helpful, Automaticity in Reading and Spelling.

Malinda

says:

Absolutely I think that teaching these subjects would make a difference – and a great one at that! When I first started to teach my daughter to read (on my own, mind you), the realization that “phonics” has a “ph” made me laugh and cringe at the same time. As an adult it never really crossed my mind…but teaching a kiddo? It just seemed so unfair :-) Thanks for doing what you do!

Chamir

says:

Thank you. I am looking forward to using your programs with my children and learning with them.

Amber

says:

Makes sense! Can’t wait to do this with my kindergartener this year!

Amy F.

says:

This makes perfect sense!

Stephanie Sanfrancesco

says:

makes sense, thank you!

Sabrina

says:

Some great food for thought! Thank you!

Victoria

says:

Thank you for spelling vs reading lesson. My son has been in level 1 reading and I felt we were falling behind in spelling. With your lesson on the two subjects I feel confident to finish level 1 reading and slowly begin spelling. Thank you for the support and confidence through this journey in teaching my son how to read and spell without any gaps.

Adriana

says:

I would like to try this approach with my kids.

We have enjoyed your reading program and this fall we will start the Spelling program. Can’t wait to see the progress!

Debbie N.

says:

Looking forward to using these programs this year with my children.

Lindsay K

says:

Well said, makes sense to me! :)

Tiffany B.

says:

I am very excited to use these programs for my two daughters.

Ning

says:

I haven’t started homeschooling but I know when I start, AAS will be my choice!

Michelle S

says:

We love AAS and AAR. Thank you!

Katherine C

says:

My son reads huge words at 7. We are almost finished with all about reading level 2, super easy for him, but didn’t want to miss anything before we try next level. I puchased all about about spelling level one last year, but didn’t start and hopefully will be great this year. Didn’t want to confuse him since he was doing so great reading and comprehending.

Megan

says:

This is such a critical concept. I “accidentally” started teaching it separately… But just today I watched one of my children go through the process of trying to determine which phonogram he needed for a word. It’s such a struggle in the beginning.

Lindsay

says:

My son definitely falls into the better reader scenario. Do you have recommendations on teaching grammar and writing skills? I don’t want him to fall behind but I’m not sure the best curriculum for that. Thanks!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Lindsay,
First, you may find this blog post on the progression of Language Arts helpful. If your son is still working on mastering beginning spelling, it may be best to wait until he is further along in All About Spelling before beginning formal writing and grammar instruction.

For writing, here are some with incremental approaches:

WriteShop uses an incremental approach and includes multi-sensory activities. The methods are effective for both regular and special needs learners.

Essentials in Writing is described by author Matthew Stephens as a Math-U-See approach to writing. In the elementary levels, this program incorporates grammar with writing. The lessons are presented in short video segments of 3 to 5 minutes and then the student works on the concept that was taught. This is a multi-sensory and incremental program that is very easy to use. There are levels for 1st-12th grades.

IEW-Institute for Excellence in Writing–also uses video. Their PAL writing program is for beginning writers and also incorporates All About Spelling.

Jensen’s Format Writing

Writing Skills by Diana Hanbury King

Writing Strands

For a different type of approach altogether, check out offerings from Brave Writer. They focus on project based writing (such as making a family history book) and use dictation for teaching the mechanics of writing, such as punctuation.

As for grammar, here are a number of programs available that have either multi-sensory components or an incremental approach. Some of the programs focus exclusively on grammar, while some include writing as well. Here are a few suggestions:

– Winston Grammar is a hands-on program with color-coded cards, and is generally aimed at students in 4th to 7th grades.

– Easy Grammar features an incremental approach and includes topics such as usage and punctuation, for 2nd grade and up.

– Essentials in Writing is described by author Matthew Stephens as a Math-U-See approach to writing. In the elementary levels, this program incorporates grammar with writing. The lessons are presented in short video segments of 3 to 5 minutes and then the student works on the concept that was taught. This is a multisensory and incremental program that is very easy to use. There are levels for 1st-12th grades.

– The Sentence Family is a simple and fun program aimed at 3rd through 6th graders. The program uses pictures along with a story to teach grammar concepts and how they relate to each other.

– Hands-On English with Linking Blocks is an intriguing program that uses wooden blocks and flash cards for a truly hands-on approach.

– Analytical Grammar teaches a mastery of grammar by working on it for short grammar focused units once a year for 2 to 3 years. Junior Analytical Grammar is for 4th or 5th graders, with Analytical Grammar for 6th to 9th graders.

Hopefully this gives you some to consider!

Lindsay

says:

Thank you so much for the detailed response. We love your programs!

Veronica

says:

Interesting article

CJ

says:

My kiddo is a great speller, but behind in reading.

Cathy

says:

This is a new concept to me but I am interested. I have a little one that loves to read but I just begun to begin to introduce her to word recognition. Is word recognition part of spelling or reading?

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Cathy,
If by word recognition you mean “the ability of a reader to recognize written words correctly and virtually effortlessly”, we call that fluency and it is developed in All About Reading.

Meghan A

says:

My boys are doing great at reading. I agree that spelling comes at a much slower pace.

Erin Grych

says:

From the examples given it makes sense

Katrina

says:

Definitely! This makes a ton of sense – my 5-year-old loves to read but I find myself giggling (not in front of him!) when he leaves me notes that are spelled phonetically so beautifully but are so far off of how they’re actually spelled! A+ for effort, buddy! I’m anxious to try these products, especially the All About Spelling to get him on the path to understanding how to spell!! :)

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Katrina,
Save these notes! They are as cute as baby talk. Gone are the days when my kiddo puts things like toof birashes on the shopping list (tooth brushes).

Megan Thomas

says:

It is great to have this clarification on when to start teaching spelling and how it is important to keep the subjects separate. Thank you!

Heather

says:

We love your curriculum!!

Julie P

says:

Even though I never thought this process through, I would have to totally agree – based on my experience.

I guess I never thought about the logistics before. thanks.

Sandi W

says:

We also teach them separate in our homeschool.

Stephanie

says:

I love this! This would be a wonderful help to our family. We have 8 children and even though we have good readers, we do not have good spellers! So, this makes sense for us!

AMANDA HERRON

says:

I almost started my son on these two together. Glad I read this post that suggested them separately! Loving ABR!!

Tania Witter

says:

Just started AAS and we are loving it!

Melissa

says:

Thank you!

Ani

says:

Yes, reading is easier! I finally decided to use AAR and AAS a couple years ago.

Cathey Cook

says:

We are teaching them separately. As a retired public school teacher, I think that is best also.

Serena Lero

says:

We love this program and plan to continue to use both Spelling and Reading!

Vida

says:

This makes AAR/AAS a great choice for my son. He reads on grade level but his spelling is not even at 2nd grade level. I can concentrate on his spelling without making him feel bad about/work on reading

Jessica Hughes

says:

My oldest son is only 5 years old, but this makes so much sense! I am innately a good speller, but my husband is another story. He was always told to “sound it out” but we know that this doesn’t always work. This is a very informative article! Thank you!

Jessica H

says:

Can’t wait to start my little ones on this program in our homeschool!

Leia Dillier

says:

This makes sense! I have never thought of it that way, but I am so excited to try your products with our oldest son.

Lynn

says:

This makes so much sense to separate these two skill sequences and allow each student to progress at their own pace in each!

Kim Stone

says:

Thank you for your product. It has helped my children tremendously.

Samantha

says:

Thank you for this information! Very helpful when starting out.

Callie Hallock

says:

I am new to this program but I love it and so does my daughter! We haven’t tried AAS but I’m excited to!

D

says:

The All About Spelling Level 1 is working FANTASTIC for my family! I have some children who are dyslexic and was finalllllyy able to get them reading but spelling is still a struggle. We have been using AAS for a few weeks now and I am already seeing great improvement. It is the easiest, most straightforward Orton-Gillingham program I have seen. I have tried many programs for reading and spelling and wish that I had found AAR/AAS years ago-it would have saved us many tears. Thank you for developing such wonderful programs!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Thank you for letting us know about your children’s success with AAS!

Betsy

says:

I am so glad you offer seperate programs for reading and spelling! We have a few years before we will start your spelling program but I know after using AAR pre-reading it will be an awesome fit for our family!

Lisa

says:

Great info clearly explained.

Elizabeth

says:

Thank you for this post! I am just starting reading and haven’t thought about spelling with my child yet, so this helps me prepare in coming years.

Heather

says:

Great information! I would have assumed that they could be taught together, glad I read this early on before we started spelling!

Ginger

says:

Thank you for all the information and support!

Kali Drugan

says:

So awesome. As a home educator I have learned so much from using this curriculum. My daughter is reading, but seems behind in spelling. I am very excited to continue.

Christy

says:

Thanks for the insight!

Jori wachowiak

says:

Can’t wait to get started with my 4 year old!

Linda

says:

So true. Thank you.

Joy

says:

I am going to try this with my dyslexic boy. I hope it helps.

Kelli

says:

I agree that reading is easier. It is processed first as visual information and translated to sound, whereas spelling begins as sound that must be translated to the correct visual information. And, yes, English is confusing with the multitude of possibilities for code choices.

I have found myself splitting the two subjects out of necessity to help my son progress and this post helped confirm and reinforce that. This year I will make that my plan A approach and see if AAR will work for him. Thanks!

Yvette

says:

Very insightful!

Renee

says:

I think it will. I’ve just started with my littles on the pre-reading program, and they LOVE it! It’s the first thing they ask for every morning. Ziggy (who we actually call “Zippy”) is both of my children’s best friend, and he comes far more often than he is scripted. :-) I think my son may have dyslexia, so I think it will take him longer to learn how to read and spell, but I’m glad we can take our time on each aspect and that he can have success, as he’s already having in AAR.

Charlotte Bowman

says:

This made a lot of sense. I like how you made it easier to see why reading and spelling should be taught separately. This has changed how i am going to approach spelling this year. Thank you!

Cassie

says:

Thank you for this information! Makes perfect sense, and I’ll make sure to implement it with my kids!

Dezari

says:

Great insight…I never thought about how much harder spelling is!

Angie

says:

This blog is so true. Learning to read really is easier than spelling. A couple of months ago, I began using All About Spelling to teach my 12 year old. He still could not or would not spell correctly and this program is my last hope. We started at level 1. So far, I like it but my son thinks he is too old for it. I disagree. I think this program requires that you stick with it, even if in the beginning you think it may not work for your child.

Mary

says:

I am starting at level 1 with my 10 year old, and I fear that she will think she is also too old. This is our 2nd year homeschooling. I’ve decided that the first year was all about discovery for me, and I learned how much my daughter was struggling with her spelling. She could spell hard words given to her on a memorized list, but basic words and spelling skill were completely absent. Good luck to you, and I am hopeful that this program holds the answers we need.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Mary,
My daughter was 10 and struggling with spelling when I first discovered All About Spelling years ago. Yes, level 1 had easy words, but she learned so much that it made a big impact on her spelling. She didn’t know why we sometimes use C and other times use K, or when to use CK, or even how to hear each sound in a word in order to get the letters in the correct order. All of these things are covered in AAS 1, and because these skills were new to her it didn’t feel too young.

Anyway, I hope this helps. Please let us know if you need anything!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Angie,
I don’t know if you have seen our blog post on Using All About Spelling with Older Students. If you haven’t, you may find it helpful. It has tips for how to fast track older students past what they already know while not missing anything.

Emily

says:

Thanks for the helpful article!

Juill

says:

My child definitely reads better than he spells and this post definitely reflects the reasoning behind it.

K

says:

Thank you, Marie, for this insight! This explaination makes so much sense and I see how my students can become better readers and spellers with this strategy!

Jeane

says:

I’ve recently begun homeschooling my 7 year old grandson. I initially tried to teach reading and dovetailing the spelling right behind, essentially teaching them together. We were both frustrated! He has challenges with reading and the Orton-Gillingham method was recommended. It’s great! The All About Reading and All About Spelling curriculums will be what we use going forward. Thank you for clarifying for me why they should be taught separately. Thank you!

Harriet Glassco

says:

This has definitely helped our older daughter (just 8 now) to relax about spelling and some phonics, while allowing us to focus on her reading separately. I love the way it is presented (All About Spelling). It’s so logical and easy for her to figure out. She also loves putting her stickers on the page to show her progress….

Rachel

says:

This is so true! I know for a fact that I’ve always excelled at reading but I’ve never quite mastered spelling. So far the same can be said for my kids . . . here’s hoping to break the bad speller cycle with your help!

Lisa

says:

I wish we would have started AAS/AAR with child #1, but #4 and #5 will benefit from what I’ve learned with their older siblings.

Kate

says:

I completely agree. Though I don’t combine the two, it has been fun that my 4 year old has listened in on my 7 year old’s spelling lessons and has learned a lot about phonogram sounds which has given her a jump on reading

Jessica Talstein

says:

Thank you for clarifying why the two are separate!

Jaime

says:

AAS has made a world of difference in my struggling reader’s abilities to read as well. It’s helped her get her words straight.

Kayla

says:

Thanks you for the great insight!

Cindy

says:

I am looking forva program to help with reading. Your program looks thorough.

Laurel

says:

I appreciate the insight you offer regarding the benefit of teaching reading and spelling as separate subjects. I will be modifying my approach accordingly.

Rachel

says:

Great info! Thanks!

Raegan Stevens

says:

This was eye-opening! Since I’m using your curriculum, I am teaching these separately, but to know WHY is great information! Thank you so much!

Sharla

says:

I’m new to homeschooling and this article was a wonderful insight for me. I enjoy learning how kids learn and after reading about encoding and decoding words I’ll never look at reading and spelling the same again. Helped to demystify it a bit! Thanks!

Tami Sisemore

says:

I am so excited to begin all about reading level 1 with my son and add spelling later. It’s awesome to have si much good information and help!

Katie

says:

Teaching reading and spelling separately allows children more room for success and therefore more room for growth. The more a child experiences success, the more he will desire to learn.

Jessica Yust

says:

My 7 year old can read extremely well. But can’t spell hardly anything. That is until we started all about spelling and we focused on it separate from reading. She now catches herself spelling words incorrectly and fixed them. That is only after 1 level. She is progressing so much quicker now I just hope our budget has room to keep up.

The All About Reading is a great product!! My children Love it and ask for more. Great for Teachers and HomeSchool Moms and Dads.

Momstarr

says:

How often during the school week should we have spelling lessons? I am currently building our daily schedule and wonder if we should cover a lesson every day or just a few days a week? Thanks for such great products!!!

Linda

says:

We do spelling every day, but don’t feel as if you need to cover a whole step. Work for 20 minutes and stop wherever you are. Just review and pick up the next day where you left off. Some steps take us one day, some take us one week. They need to master it before moving on. Enjoy! AAS is a great program!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Great question, Momstarr.

We recommend working on spelling every day for 20 minutes. Some students will be able to finish a Step in one day, but most will need 3 days and some may even need a week or more. This blog post, Spelling: how much time should I spend?, explains this further.

So, for your daily schedule plan on 20 minute of spelling daily and allow your student to progress at his or her own pace.

I hope this helps. Please let us know if you have any further questions!

Pat

says:

I agree. Spelling needs to be taught separately. Love your program.

C. Webb

says:

Thanks for sharing. I’m learning so much about helping my son spell.

Sandy M.

says:

I love this post! We started using AAS level 1 with my oldest who wasn’t a strong reader & just turned seven. He was barely reading level 1 easy readers and yet we didn’t want to push reading on him. So we decided to take a break and focus on spelling with the AAR curriculum. By time we had gone through the first 10-15 lessons, his reading had soared through the roof! He was excited to read on his own and progressed to chapter books within 6 months. This year we have both AAS AND AAR and plan to stagger them through the week, one on M/W and the other on T/Th. Reading this blog has given me confidence that this is a good way for me to teach my children. Thank you!!!!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Sandy,
Some children will do fine with not doing reading every day, but some children will struggle. Also, children will make more steady and possibly quicker progress through reading and spelling if they work in it each day.

We recommend spending just 20 minutes a day in All About Reading and just 20 minutes a day in All About Spelling. My co-worker Jenny explains how she does AAR and AAS together in one 35 minutes block in this blog post.

I hope this gives you some ideas. Please let me know if you have any further questions.

Michelle

says:

We love All About Reading! Can’t wait to start All About Spelling!

Ginger

says:

Sounds good to me.

Heather

says:

That makes so much sense! Thanks for explaining.

Becky

says:

We have just started the All About Reading and Soelling programs this year. I love that these programs are engaging and interactive! My kindergartener loves Ziggy and the All About Reading program is easy to implement. My Third grader is doing the All About Spelling program. The tiles make it fun and interactive. I love that this program teaches mastery.

Megan

says:

My daughter has such great spelling intuition- this program has been so helpful! Starting with phonograms gives a really solid foundation for reading and spelling.

Mary W.

says:

I have found this to be very true – that reading proficiency comes before spelling proficiency.

Dawn

says:

This makes so much sense. Thanks for all the great information. I would love to win this program.

Tanessa

says:

Thank you. We love both all about reading and spelling.

Lindsay

says:

This has been the case for both my children. They can read a given word or passage much more accurately than they can spell it. Thanks for explaining why!

K.S.

says:

I have used AAS last year with IEW PALS curriculum, and will be starting AAR this year. I’m looking forward to a more streamlined curriculum.

Keshia G

says:

I am using both AAR and AAS with my four youngest. (2 with autism) I love how it is step by step and they can go at their own pace not by any specific grade level. They are all different , with different strengths and go at difference paces. The 2 youngest absolutely love ziggy and the games and the tiles give it a fantastic hands on experience which is hard to find with spelling programs especially. (Very much appreciated when one has issues with writing) Making learning fun is always a great way to keep them engaged.

Kelley T

says:

Will be starting AAR 1 with son and AAS 1 with daughter next week. So excited to see their progress.

Melissa

says:

Thank you for putting into words what intuition has told so many of us, and for creating a program that follows it through! All About Spelling is such a blessing to our family.

Gina H.

says:

This really helped me better understand why they are separate programs . Hope to try your AAR program with my daughter!

CR

says:

This makes sense! Thanks

Michelle

says:

Excited to try this program. I’ve heard such good things about AAS and AAR.

Js

says:

I had no idea! I’m so glad I read this!

Jennifer

says:

This is a great explanation. Thank you.

Julie A Hord

says:

I am so thankful to have found AAR. It is working wonders with my son. His progress is amazing us all:)

Tracy

says:

This helps me understand why my children are better readers than they are spellers. We’ve been using AAS for 2.5 years and progress seems slow but it’s steady… And they retain what they lean. We’re sticking with it! Thank you!

Charlie

says:

This program has been great for my son! He had a slow start in reading and is now reading chapter books!

Amber M Landavazo

says:

Agreed! My student is an excellent reader but a struggling speller. I’m so glad these products are separate and allow us to move at the pace appropriate for her.

Sierra

says:

Thank you for clearing this up! I was wondering:) I appreciate the hard work!!

Rosa

says:

Thank you for this post! I’ve been asking the Lord what should I use for my son so he can learn reading and spelling. This looks like a great program for my son and would like to give it a try.. thank you so much and God bless!

Bethany Bechtold

says:

Thank you for this post! Such a great explanation to a problem we began to experience. I had emailed AAL when my son reached a point of frustration as to what (long a) spelling to use (a, ea, ai, ay, eigh). I received a great explanation back from you and realized, while his reading was progressing beautifully, his spelling wasn’t (but thought it was). I stopped where we were in spelling and started back from the beginning to make sure he mastered each step. It’s ok to be in a higher level of reading but lower level in spelling. And it’s normal!!! I love your program and recommend it to everyone who cares to listen 😊

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Bethany,
I’m happy to hear we were able to help you!

Leighann Harris

says:

This really makes sense! Thanks!

Jamika

says:

I’m so glad I read this. Makes sense. I’m adding All About Soelling in this year and was planning on doing it all at once. Now I know.

Sherri O.

says:

This article has been really helpful. Thank you!

Michelle

says:

We are making good progress in reading. I hope we do as well in spelling. We will be adding it soon.

Kimber Younker

says:

I just got our kits put together tonight! I can’t wait to get started!

HappyMom

says:

This is a brilliant solution! Spelling does not come naturally in our home and I love that my children are able to plow ahead with their reading progress and comes along at its own pace.

Shawnte

says:

I have been on your mailing list since I started homeschooling almost 4 years ago. I appreciate that you don’t just sell products but through this blog you educate parents. I so appreciate the different tips, research and testimonies that you post. I finally purchased all about spelling for my two children and was super excited to combined it with the program I have always used. After reading your blog and check list about dyslexia and speaking with your customer service rep over the phone last week, I have decided to save up for All About Reading and use it instead of the curriculum I had already purchased. I’m excited about the hope of my children one day loving to read and look forward to using your products. Thanks so much.

Whit

says:

Wow. This really makes sense to me and is a deal breaker! Win or not I am now 100% sold on AAL!! I already knew it was great, but now I see why we need the two separate programs. Great article!

Shawna Fay

says:

Thank for the awesome tip!

Ann

says:

Thank you for sharing this wisdom!

Kelly

says:

This is very helpful

roslyn harris

says:

I do like that they are separate subjects, however for one son spelling seems easier or at least supportive for reading so sometimes we spell some of the word lists.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Roslyn,
Occasionally a child will find spelling easier, and spelling words will help to them read them. Asking him to spell the word lists before reading them is a great way to teach to his strengths. Way to go!

Sarah C.

says:

We use both AAS and AAR!!! It has been a game-changer for us. I highly recommend both curriculum to everyone I know! :)

Cherie

says:

I never knew this! I always just assumed they go together like two peas in a pod! Thank you for your knowledge and insight.

Ashley Boismier

says:

I really value All About Spelling and All About Learning as resources for teaching my son how to read and spell at home!

Theresa S.

says:

Thank you for explaining these concepts! Very helpful to me.

Teodora

says:

I was surprised that first grade automatically came with spelling tests which became difficult too fast. I started and kept my daughter, who was an advanced reader, on the AAS curriculum regardless of the material covered at school. She has done wonderfully thus far. My son, on the other hand, is a slow reader. He is still working through the mechanics, the compreension, the fluency. He is about to enter first grade, and my plan is to completely ignore the spelling at school. I will wait until he is comfortable with the mechanics of reading before I start him in AAS1, even if that is next year. There are simple things that already work for him from the AAS1 -he is capable of understanding some rules and he can apply them using the magnetic tiles, after a period of thinking (there is no such time given in school). Wonderful program, and I agree, reading is easier and should be started first. Spelling requires a lot of concentration and should be done at independent pace, at independent time.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Teodora,
Thank you for sharing how you are using AAS to supplement your children’s learning in school. Interesting!

Angie R

says:

So true!!!

Lisa

says:

Excellent read!

Wilda

says:

Interesting.

JennieT

says:

Thank you. I so agree!

Lori

says:

I definitely think teaching them separately will be the way to go with my youngest!

Susanne

says:

This makes sense! Thanks!

Nicole Smith

says:

I just received my all about reading package. If all goes well, I will definitely order all about spelling

Amy

says:

Our first time using AAR & AAS. We are loving it this far! Thanks for these pointers!!

Kathleen

says:

This has been so helpful with teaching my reluctant daughter to read. I never thought the day would happen that she could read words on her own, but she does. Now I am using the same books for her little brother and already see his interest in learning. Thank you

Calista

says:

Love your products! Thank you!

Mrs. Kellogg

says:

My daughter found reading easy (Like me!), but spelling is a problem! (LIKE ME!. But now, after four other spelling programs, WE are learning to spell correclty!! LOVE it! 4

Karen

says:

We are starting AAS4 and 3/4 through AAR3. I feel like we’re not far enough ahead in reading and sometimes we’re barely learning something in Reading before needing to spell it almost right away. Is that okay or should we slow down in Spelling?

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Karen,
How is your student doing with this? Is he or she struggling with the spelling?

You can slow down if you feel our student will benefit from it, but it is okay. Most children, spending just 20 minutes a day on reading and 20 minutes a day on spelling, will move ahead in reading. But not all students. My daughter is actually slightly ahead in spelling, learning how to spell words in AAS 3 a week or so before learning how to read them in AAR 3. This works really well for her.

At the point your child is at, reading is going to naturally pull more and more ahead, as AAR 4 covers what is in AAS 5, 6, and 7.

I hope this helps. Please let us know if you have any further questions.

Merlyka Fonseca

says:

I am so keen to start these programs. The instructions are very well laid out and I am sure my daughter is going to excel.

Christine Robertson

says:

Love this program

Lisa

says:

I can see this being true for my child. She is a great reader and has been, but now that she is trying to spellol words turn out differently. I hope that with your products, I can help her learn the right way to encode, maybe helping myself too!

Evelyn G

says:

Teaching these two subjects seperately seems to be the way to go and this is what I will be doing with my daughter.

Launa R.

says:

Yep, when I taught a one-room private school, most kids were above grade level for reading but about half were somewhere lower for spelling. I did assessments at the beginning of the year so they could be where they should be for each subject…but most curriculum doesn’t make that very easy. Homeschooling my daughter I’m glad yours gives that option.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Thank you for taking the time to give us your experiences with this, Launa!

Loretta Spry

says:

Very true! Would love to see if AAR works for my 8 year old non- reader. He is very stubborn

Traci

says:

Makes sense now that I think about it!

Liz Bates

says:

Have loved AAS and AAR. Great additions to our curriculum!

Shannon Soehl

says:

I have home schooled for 16 years. It never occurred to me not to teach reading and spelling together. It makes perfect sense, wish I had know this years ago.

Laurie

says:

Makes sense to me. As a child, I read way above my grade level, but my spelling skills were below grade level.

Allison

says:

This was really interesting! I never thought about why these might need to be taught separately, but this gives me some important food for thought once we finish All About Reading level 1!

Jody Reynolds

says:

Great advice! I love you spelling program. It makes so much more sense than the spelling program that’s part of my daughter’s curriculum which focuses on just memorizing word list each week. I’m even learning things I never knew before!

T

says:

This makes sense.

Carrie

says:

Spelling definitely takes more concentrated effort on the part of the learner. Encoding vs. decoding :)

Kjason

says:

Great info!! So glad you offer a different approach. We are just starting a.a.r.2 and a.a.s.1.

Fran

says:

I had never looked at it this way, SO helpful! Glad I have both programs!

Angela

says:

I love AAS. Just trying to memorize the words and playing spelling games at school never worked for my son. I can already see improvement with AAS.

Tracy

says:

We love All About Spelling and Reading for homeschooling and I implement many of these techniques in my tutoring.

This is so interesting! I love reading your blog and will be sharing this post!

Charity Andersen

says:

THANK YOU SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO MUCH FOR YOUR PROGRAM! My son has a myriad of learning disabilities and we have never found any success with any other program to date…EXCEPT All About Reading! We have seen him grow at least two grade levels in one year! SO HAPPY!!!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Charity,
This is fabulous! What wonderful progress, and how lovely that we were able to be a part of it! Thank you for letting us know how your son is doing.

Christine

says:

I Already knew it was Orton Gillingham based curriculum I was choosing to continue teaching my dyslexic son, as there is no better method and approach for that style of learner in my opinion. What sold me on your specific product however, is the easy teaching setup!! You’ve made it so simplified and easy to teach within that approach! Can’t wait to start! Thanks for all the other wealth of information on your sights. Nice to hear what I’ve been learning, investigating and slowly putting into practice has been tried and found successful by yourself and many many others. Encouraging.

Jessica

says:

We love these programs. My children have enjoyed learning to read and spell. We tried other programs and my kids got frustrated and upset over reading and spelling. Once we started these programs my kids would fight over who went first.

Jessica

says:

We also started with the just the reading. When they became more confident in their reading abilities we added spelling. I love how the programs are separate.

Jamie Weaver

says:

We are 23 lessons into All About Reading pre reading with my 6 year old. He enjoys the lessons, they are simple to teach and he is learning AND retaining so much.
I was unsure which level to buy initally but I contacted customer service and they helped me choose the appropriate level.
We have used several other programs but All About Reading is my favorite. I will recommend to other moms!

Kathryn B.

says:

Yes! Separate programs is the way to go for reading and spelling. I’ve seen this in my own children. My oldest struggled in other programs before we found AAR and AAS because she was always slowed down by her spelling abilities. Now she loves both subjects because they meet her right where she is.

Autumn

says:

I agree! My daughter can read very well but has a horrible time spelling!

Julie

says:

I agree! My children can read many more words than they can spell. We also teach reading & spelling separately.

Tina H.

says:

Great info! Love AAS!

Danielle

says:

Great info! I’m glad we’re starting with AAR 1 and focusing on reading first before delving into spelling. We are excited to start. Thanks again! 😀

Kathy

says:

Having taught children with special needs for years, I recognized how insidious teaching spelling along with reading could be for them. However, I did not understand this could be true for so many children unable to grasp the patterns in any meaningful way. Thank you for this straight-forward explanation. AAR, and AAS are awesome!!!

Tonya

says:

We started with AAR and AAS this year. So far they are really enjoying it.

Rachele Alban

says:

I tried to do them both together, but it was so overwhelming. Now I understand why!

Monica L

says:

Thanks so much for the info. I live the AAR program and will soon begin AAS 1. I can’t wait to get started!

Carrie Phillips

says:

Great info!! Thanks :)

Kayla

says:

I never considered this and yet it makes so much sense. Thank you for the explanation.

Meggan Edwards

says:

Great info here! Thank you! We are loving AAR and AAS!

Jessica

says:

We are loving AAR 1 and looking forward to starting AAS. This makes a lot of sense as to why they should be taught seperately. Thank you!

Courtney

says:

We love AAS and I can’t wait to start AAR with my children!

Emily

says:

This makes so much sense! My daughter is just starting All About Spelling (in addition to already doing All About Reading), and we love it.

Keely

says:

Should we keep AAS one level below AAR?

Angelie E

says:

Can’t wait to get started with all about reading with my 5 year old!

Sherry

says:

We absolutely love how spelling is linked with rules rather than memorizing a bunch of words.

Eleni

says:

I love all of the tips that All About Reading sends out. They are so helpful in teaching my child.

Cara

says:

My 2 younger children, both dyslexic, are finally reading thanks to these programs.

Leslie

says:

I can see why this is true. Glad I am teaching then separate.

Ann R

says:

Thank you for this reminder! We are just beginning AAR, but I can see how working on both with the same lesson may be detrimental.

Angela

says:

Great ideas!

Valerie

says:

Never thought about reading and spelling this way. But am glad we do them as separate subjects.

Stephanie

says:

Good to know. We are going to start AAS level 1 in about a month.

Betty

says:

The concept of teaching spelling separately from reading is what sold me on AAS! We’re on level 4.

Christine

says:

We love AAR and AAS!

Wendy Clark

says:

Oh boy! I am about to start teaching AAR 2 and AAS 1. Good to know!

Sonya

says:

I love the All About Spelling program!

Corie

says:

AAR had worked wonders for my daughter. We love it.

Anna

says:

We are using both after trying other curriculums. AAR & AAS are finally working for us. They are easy to teach also!

Jessica Valind

says:

I am so glad I read this post.

Laura

says:

That was wonderful! Thank you

Jennifer

says:

I love your programs so much!!! I wish you’d write one for math:)

SARAH R

says:

I agree with this approach, thanks for the enlightenment!

Myra

says:

This makes a lot of sense! I am so happy we have used AAR and AAS from the start!

OTE

says:

I am doing both wih two children and I wish I had done AAR and AAS with the older ones!

Sharon Ford

says:

This makes perfect sense to me now!

Maya

says:

Totally agree with this article. I have always wondered how programs that have it all in 1 can work. I think it is mostly at the expense of spelling, because if you teach the same words to read and spell, the spelling part is basically memorizing.

LaVonne F

says:

I love AAR and can’t wait to start AAS!

Jaime B

says:

I really appreciate that spelling and reading are taught separately. My daughter excels at reading, but needs a much slower pace at learning to spell well. In general, her memorization lacks a bit, so it is helpful for her to be able to read and then take the time to repeat some spelling rules.

Chere

says:

Looking forward to teaching another child to read this fall with AAR!

Colleen

says:

I have been using AAS for years and I am excited to start AAR with my pre-schoolers very soon.

Cristy B

says:

Just started AAR with my daughter–called today for some advice and they are very helpful and encouraging!! Thanks AAR staff!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

We love being helpful and encouraging, Cristy! I’ll let the phone staff know they are appreciated.

Vicki

says:

Wow! This was such a good article! Thanks so much for this fresh perspective!! Love your programs!!!

Thecla

says:

It’s a good concept, although my son fits into the category of being better at spelling rather than reading. He needs to learn how to do it together so he understands a word to read it.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Thecla,
I have one of those too. She is further ahead in All About Spelling than she is in All About Reading, but it works well for her. Most students do move ahead in reading, but having reading and spelling separate allows our less common type of learners succeed as well!

Brandie

says:

I am just starting AAR and and really excited to see how it goes with my 6 year old… I will be starting AAS next year (if all goes to plan) and from everything I have read about this program really looking forward to how it will help all of my kids learn to read and spell :)

Candace

says:

Thanks for all the great info you provide to parents!!

Tasmin McDonald

says:

This is good information to have. I’ll have to consider these options as I’m working with the kiddos.

Krystil

says:

Oh, I’ve been dreading when mine are ready for spelling. I’m terrible at spelling, I’m hoping when we start AAS that I pick up a few tricks too!

Beccolina

says:

My second is a very good reader, but spelling (or writing in general) is HARD for him. HAving the reading and spelling separate helps him read interesting things without being bogged down by his difficulty with writing.

Amanda

says:

This totally makes sense, even though it’s SO often they are thought to ‘go together’. Great post I’m sharing with lots of my homeschooling mom friends!

Renae B

says:

continues to give me confidence in my choice to use your programs throughout our homeschool years.

Rachel Gray

says:

This makes a lot of sense to me considering my experience with my 7 year old. He taught himself how to read, but really struggled with spelling words out. We love All About Spelling and it is proving to fill all of those phonetically gaps. :)

Kelley

says:

Great info!

Elizabeth R.

says:

Thank you for the info!

Tonya

says:

💜 great info! Thank you!

Melissa

says:

Makes sense to me :)

Jill

says:

This looks so great!

Pam havens

says:

Just makes sense

Jennifer

says:

Great info!

Jenni Jones

says:

Great points; this makes complete sense! Thank you!

Samantha Meadows

says:

Can’t wait to start using this!

Amy

says:

Thank you for the info!

Illise

says:

Amazing program. Easy to teach and apparently easy to learn as my son advances above grade level in reading!

Sabrina

says:

Very helpful, thank you.

Brittney G

says:

This makes it so clear! Thank you!

Stephanie Dorothy

says:

Very helpful! Thanks!!!

This is such great information! As a new homeschooling mom, I didn’t realize the difference between decoding and encoding. Can’t wait to get started with AAR and AAS!

Maria Surratt

says:

We just started AAS this year and my older kids have whizzed through level one. Would love to win the $100 towards next level to keep us moving.

Marci

says:

I’m already using AAR and my child is doing so well! Can’t wait to start AAS too!

Angela Doherty

says:

Intrinsically I always felt that reading should be the focus before spelling. Can not wait to begin AAR this September with my girls.

Michelle lee

says:

I agree 100%

Adrien

says:

This has proven to be a fantastic approach for us!

Such a great article, and so many truths I did not realize until reading it! I am a former public school teacher, and looking back, teaching reading and spelling separately would have been so much wiser than teaching them to my little kindergarteners together!

SHERRY SALTER

says:

This approach makes sense to me. We are currently using the pre-reading curriculum and my 3 yr old really likes it.

Aide Calvillo

says:

Have been reading about your reading and spelling curriculum and started saving to purchase it. And although my daughter loves to read has trouble with spelling I’m excited to learn with my daughter this new approach to reading and spelling .

Kristina Poehls

says:

👍🏻

Shannon

says:

Do you think children need contiuous reading instruction? Once they become fluent readers what is the benefit of more instruction?

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Shannon,
This is a great question!

I suppose it comes down to how you define fluent. We define it as the ability to read smoothly without having to sound words out. However, by this definition children can read fluently on a beginning level but not have the skills to read higher level books. If you define fluent as reading well on a certain reading level, which level would that be?

Our reading program only has four levels, and after All About Reading 4 students have the phonics and word attack skills necessary to sound out high school level words, though depending on age and life experience they may not know the meaning of all higher level words yet. Word attack skills include things like dividing words into syllables, making analogies to other words, sounding out the word with the accent on different word parts, recognizing affixes, etc…

Also, if you check out the Scope and Sequences for AAR 3 and 4, you will see that they cover a lot beyond phonograms as well. These levels cover things like literary analysis for comprehension (for example: making predictions and inferences, comparing and contrasting main characters and stories, discussing the main conflict and character transformation, etc). They also cover literary terms including but not limited to hyperbole, simile, and personification. AAR also teaches reading reference materials, reading with expression, English words with Greek, French, Spanish, and Italian influences, morphology, and much more. All of these things are a part of reading, even if they aren’t phonics.

I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any further questions!

Mary

says:

This is interesting! I was looking at this curriculum and a different one that teaches spelling and reading together. I have been leaning towards the other, but this definitely gives me something to think about! Thanks for the info!

This sounds great!! What a wonderful giveaway

Heather S

says:

Heard great things about AAS! Would love to try them both.

Karen

says:

Can’t wait to start using this.

Terry

says:

We love all about reading! My daughter is on level 2 and we even added in all about spelling this year. I look forward to using your curriculum through all the levels.

Destiny

says:

I love your curriculum!

Carrie

says:

Great information!

Autumn

says:

Love your products!

Christina

says:

I think it depends on the kid. For example, I am a very visual learner. I learned to read early and loved to read. While reading I noticed how words were spelled and could remember them. I was always a pretty good speller. Imagine my surprise when my daughter who started reading when she was 3 couldn’t spell the word “the” when she was 5! She is a great reader, but is not a natural speller. AAS has been great for her. We started in level 1 and will be doing level 5 this year. When she isn’t sure how to spell something, she can usually figure it out if I ask her questions and remind her of rules that she has learned.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

You bring up a good point, Christina. Some kids will be able to move along in reading and spelling at the same pace. However, keeping reading and spelling separate will not hold those kids back.

Chantel

says:

Great ideas!

Lorrine Couch Hart

says:

Using your product with a child who has great difficulty in reading. Love your product!

Gail Timmer

says:

I think spelling and reading should be taught separately. The rules we teach in spelling help make reading make sense. 😊

Katherine

says:

I’m so excited to get started!

Michelle

says:

I love how you guys take time to explain these things.
Very interesting article!!!

Kenda Wathen

says:

I never looked at it this way before. It does sound good for my struggling spellers.

Jessica

says:

Interesting information!

Michelle

says:

Thanks for the clarification on teaching these separately.

Michele Robinson

says:

I would love to give this program a try.

Paige

says:

My daughter has dyslexia and this curriculum had helped her grow leaps and bounds in her abilities. Thank you All About Learning Press!

Amy

says:

Love this program!

Sarah Ter Maat

says:

I love this approach! My oldest was in public school until 5th grade and this approach would have really helped her. She never learned how to sound out words and only learned to spell by lists and repetition. I plan on using this program with my 2 youngers.

Naomi

says:

I was just talking with someone about this the other day. I love being able to refer people to the wonderful blog here!

Tia Mayfield

says:

Makes alot of sense. Sometimes it feels like an all in one would be easier then juggling the different curriculums, but it was always harder to balance the pace when the subjects were together.

Marifer Hunt

says:

This will be my first year us My AAS! I am so excited to try it!!!

Karen

says:

We couldn’t be happier with AAR and AAS!

Tami B

says:

Love the way your programs approach reading and spelling! I’m excited to start using both programs in our homeschool.

Nichole Burke

says:

This us really good info. Was curious as to why!

Lydia Hostetler

says:

I have struggling readers. My 7 yr old is soo close. I’ve been trying different methods and programs, trying to be patient. I’d love to try this one.

Erin F.

says:

My daughter can read quite well, but can’t spell even small words. It’s a struggle to teach the words. That’s one reason we homeschool. The education anywhere we live is not noted for quality, rather pushing kids through.

Tamata

says:

My son struggles so much with spelling. It’s slow steady progress for him there but he just took off with reading. It was so important for us that these be 2 separate subjects with separate pacing.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Thank you, Tamata, for sharing this great example as to why it is important to separate reading and spelling.

Michelle

says:

I’ve struggled with spelling all my life. And as I start to teach my own kids I’ve been really nervous about it. I really love the info and empowerment your materials give me as a teacher. And especially to my students

Tabitha

says:

Such great information!

Teri

says:

Hi I was wondering with my first grader who is finishing up AAR level 1 by this November, would she start AAS level 1 and then do AAR level 2 after AAS1? Is it recommended to use AAS1 and AAR2 at the same time but given different time allotment each day?

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Teri,
We recommend using both AAR and AAS at the same time but independently of each other. We recommend spending 20 minutes a day on AAR and another 20 minutes a day on AAS. You would allow your child to progress at his own pace in each.

Mercedes

says:

Simple/genius explanation: There are more than 250 ways to spell the 45 sounds in the English language.

Lynne

says:

I have recently been trained in OG, and that program encourages decoding and encoding go hand in hand. As an OG practitioner, I was surprised to see that you go against that theory. I thought the current theory was to teach how encoding/spelling impacts decoding. In fact, assessing in OG includes spelling of lessons taught, even though kiddos might know of other spellings and get confused about when to use which one, but can read them just fine. Would you then also see them assessed separately?

Merry at AALP

says: Customer Service

Hi Lynne,

Great question! Most Orton-Gillingham programs do combine spelling and reading, but they don’t have to be combined to be O-G. Both All About Reading and All About Spelling are Orton-Gillingham based. Marie is a member of the International Dyslexia Association, and has instructed graduate level courses in Orton-Gillingham Literacy Training offered through Nicolet College in Rhinelander, Wisconsin. If you haven’t had a chance to watch their story about her son’s struggles, you may want to check that out. Quite amazing!

One reason to combine spelling and reading is that spelling reinforces reading concepts. However, that still happens with our programs, but at a pace within each program that meets the child’s needs. The programs are independent of each other so students can move as quickly or as slowly as they need to with each skill. Throughout over 20 years of tutoring, Marie has found that kids generally move ahead more quickly in reading, and we don’t want to hold them back with the spelling.

Since the programs are separate, the instructor is free to take each at a pace that works for the student. For a majority of students, we find that means being able to move on in reading without giving up mastery in spelling. However, there are some students for whom spelling seems to unlock reading for a child–and progressing at the child’s pace in each skill area allows the instructor to also meet that student’s needs.

AAS and AAR both use a similar sequence and the same phonograms. Both are complete phonics programs, so they are interrelated in that way. All About Reading includes research-based instruction in decoding skills, fluency, automaticity, comprehension, vocabulary and lots and lots of reading practice. AAS focuses instead on encoding skills, spelling rules and other strategies that help children become good spellers.

As far as assessing students, we do encourage separate assessments both for placement and for determining mastery. As you have observed, a student may be able to read a word easily, but may not have mastered it for spelling purposes. Separating the subjects makes it easy for the instructor to keep track of what has been mastered with regard to both reading and spelling, and what needs ongoing review.

I hope this helps! Please let me know if you have additional questions.

Harun

says:

Thanks for sharing this great idea

Aaron Schofield

says:

I do appreciate this post, but I have a question on implementation. Do you mean to say that we should wait to teach spelling until our child is reading fluently? Or just that lessons should be on different days? And how does handwriting practice figure in? For example, my 8 year old really needs spelling instruction. She is a very advanced reader, and gets bored easily. I think Level 4 would be the best fit for words she doesn’t always spell correctly, but she does not have the foundational rules for the earlier levels. How quickly can we go through the earlier level rules?

My 6 year old reads aloud slowly from Charolette’s Web, but naturally cannot spell well at all. I do not want to teach her spelling yet, but I am not sure when to start. However, I do want to help her with handwriting, so she is holding her pencil correctly, starting letters in the right place, and can distinguish bs and ds, etc.

Thanks!

Merry at AALP

says: Customer Service

Hi Aaron,

Marie recommends completing All About Reading Level 1 first (or the equivalent), and then adding in the All About Spelling program sometime after that. This way students get a solid start in reading first, and have a strong basis for spelling as well. See our article on the Right Time to Start AAS: http://blog.allaboutlearningpress.com/aas-right-time-to-start/

It’s fine to wait on spelling for your 6 year-old if you find she isn’t ready yet. Some people do focus on handwriting first and add in spelling later in the first or second grade year. If you had a child who was very interested in spelling or who was already trying to write down notes or stories, then you would want to teach spelling sooner.

For your 8 year-old, you would want to start with Level 1, but fast-track through those beginning levels. Most students get through 2-3 levels the first year, but if all of the early words were super easy for her, she might get to level 4 this year. Here is an example of how you might fast track, taken from level 1: http://blog.allaboutlearningpress.com/using-all-about-spelling-with-older-students/

You can apply this same strategy to the other levels until you get to harder words. Marie encourages parents and teachers to “fast track” if the student knows how to spell most of the words but does not understand the underlying basic spelling concepts. In this case, very quickly skim the parts that she already knows and slow down on the parts that she needs to learn. Pull out several words as examples. Make sure she understands the concept being taught, and then move on.

Both reading and spelling should be done daily. If you are using our reading program, we recommend spending about 20 minutes per day on that, and 15-20 minutes on spelling.

I hope this helps! Please let me know if you have additional questions.

Merry at AALP

says: Customer Service

By the way, with regard to distinguishing b and d, Marie has a wonderful article about reversals with tactile ideas, activities using large arm movements, and analogies: http://blog.allaboutlearningpress.com/how-to-solve-letter-reversal-problems/

Kacie

says:

This is a brilliant analogy! I’ve always been a great reader but a horrible speller. I was taught spelling by random word lists I had to memorize. Makes no sense. I’m thankful I didn’t learn to read that way.

I am looking forward to AAS with my children. Perhaps I’ll improve my own spelling skills while I’m at it :).

Also? I want spaghetti and meatballs for dinner.

At my son’s first elementary school, they taught phonetic spelling. The important thing was to encourage young children to hear sounds and recognize letters and dipthongs and use their skills to attempt to spell rather than how to spell a word correctly. The result is now my son is not afraid to learn new vocabulary or write. I don’t criticize his spelling when it’s not correct, I just say good effort and that sounds right. I actually do admire when he takes on a big word, e.g. one of those funny words (like special vs speshul) or words with many syllables.

Eric Rolf

says:

Very nice and simple way of learning…i enjoyed reading this article.

Sabrina

says:

I learned of AAS when my oldest was in 3rd gr. We quickly went through levels 1 & 2 in the course of the yr. which found the culprits causing him to struggle that I couldn’t figure out. In 4th gr. he completed levels 3 & 4. I must say we were very sad that there aren’t any readers for these as yet. He loved the readers from levels 1-2; I couldn’t believe how much he enjoyed them.

We are currently working through level 5. I clearly see how he reads much easier than spells as you explain in the video. He still struggles with other subjects when he needs to write a word. He can read it in a heartbeat, most of the time, but figuring out which way to spell it is a different matter.

My youngest is currently doing the AAR Pre-K, and will move up through the levels, hopefully missing out on the issues that my oldest experienced. Tonight I researched our local library to find they have most of the wordless books you mentioned in another article. I’m so excited and can’t wait to get them! Could you recommend a similar list for say, level 5? :-)

Thanks for explaining the reason for the split.

Crystal H

says:

We just finished level 1 AAR and are about to start level 2 AAR and level 1 AAS. I have noticed my kids can read SO many words but have no idea how to spell them. So obviously they need different curriculum to learn each.

Wendy Pierce

says:

Teaching the 2 separately has made a world of difference for us. It has taken a lot of stress and pressure off my 9 year who reads “on grade level” but struggles tremendously with spelling.

Nicole

says:

This makes a lot of sense to me. So many times we’re looking for ways to kill two birds with one stone, but often times this kind of multi-tasking means what is getting done isn’t as effective.

Amanda V

says:

This seems really logical. Excited to explore more.

VIVIAN Mcwhiney

says:

love thise i always said it but did’t know why

Kelly

says:

I agree – I like the two separate – we are currently just working on learning to read – before we add spelling.

Sara K.

says:

I think it does work better to teach them separately. We already do this in our home school. I think it works out much better. I know our son knows more words that he can read than he can spell.

Sasha

says:

My oldest son went to public school for Kindergarten and 1st grade, where he learned to read really quickly. Then we brought him home to school him for 2nd and now 3rd grade, I have found that even though he was an excellent reader he had no concept of spelling. We began using your spelling program last January and he has made tremendous progress!! I am now considering beginning my kindergarten son (as soon as he is ready) learning to read using your Reading program. I love your system and the way that you teach the sounds along with the reasoning behind it.

Kensey

says:

I love the idea of teaching reading and spelling separately! My 5 year old reads exceptionally well even though he’s in prek but spelling has been a lot more challenging. I like that AAR and AAS are designed so he can go at his own speed!

Donna Y

says:

I guess I’d never thought about it, but it makes sense! This approach would definitely help us.

Chris Van Den Berg

says:

I for one agree that reading and spelling, while essential to one another, should be taught separately. How many children get bogged done with the spelling part of any given reading program, and therefore don’t excel at reading because of low self-esteem issues? I think that the idea of splitting the two makes perfect sense.

Keziah Campbell

says:

Yes I feel that spelling and reading separately would make a big difference in our homeschool. My kids need to know their letters first and then understand how all letters put together can make sounds and then into words.

Carrie Adkins

says:

It makes so much sense to teach reading and spelling separately. You are using different processes in your brain (decoding and encoding) for each skill so it makes sense to teach them separately. As an ESL teacher, I see that kids can take in much more (reading/listening) than they can produce (writing/speaking) as they are learning the language so it stands to reason that as a kids is learning to read and write, they should be taught separately as they can probably move at a different pace in each skill–reading will progress faster than writing.

Amy

says:

This makes sense to me! We are doing it this way, and I think it gives my kids more confidence in their spelling.

Rachel B

says:

I didn’t know people taught it together but I have only home schooled for a few years. I never thought about doing it together.

Heather

says:

Would it be odd to say that I wasn’t aware that the two were taught together at all? I grew up with reading and spelling being separate subjects, and that is how I teach my children. It just made more sense to focus on them separately since the child wouldn’t be able to give adequate focus to either one simultaneously.

Lindsay

says:

We definitely found that teaching them separately works so much better! We’re very glad that you’ve come out with AAR now – we love using them both separately.

Lisa Brennan

says:

I love the singular focus. And slowly introducing spelling.

Cindy

says:

Three of my kids have all learned how to read before spelling was taught. Makes sense to me!

Rebecca Kim

says:

I agree that reading and spelling should be taught separately. Maybe someone who naturally sees both spelling patterns and reading patterns would require little instruction but this has not been true for me or my children. I have started AAR and AAS with my oldest child and I am seeing great improvement in both her reading and spelling.

tina

says:

I would like to the two separately.

Sarah

says:

Yes, I agree that reading and spelling should be taught separately. It can helped immensely as we’re starting with the foundations of spelling and continuing on with reading skills.

Angie

says:

I definitely believe this to be true, and should be taught separately since those readiness skills happen at different times. Reading comes very easily for my 7yo boy, but spelling is not his strong suit…yet.

Suzanne

says:

We didn’t intentionally teach reading and spelling separately, we just naturally fell into it that way. I teach reading first, and then when they start asking “how do you spell …” I start with spelling. It has worked well for two out of three so far.

Kim

says:

I will be starting the level 1 reading program with my youngest soon and start speling at a later time. I agree that they should be taught separate.

Paula

says:

We are teaching reading and spelling separately. It does make a difference for my children.

Autumn

says:

I’m teaching my daughter how to read now and spell later, though she’s constantly asking me how to spell things that she wants to write in her journal. They are much different subjects, and should be treated as such.

Kira Ehlenbeck

says:

In my experience, teaching reading separately from spelling seems to have afforded my children more confidence in both areas. They also seem to enjoy the challenge of learning to spell words by playing games and following rules.

Ami

says:

We love having two programs! My son’s reading skills out pace his fine motor spelling/handwriting skills. I like that he can progress at both at his own abilities.

Suzanne

says:

I never thought about it when I started homeschooling my girls (now age 9). After trying unsuccessfully to teach reading and spelling together and failing miserably, I tried All About Spelling and it is working miracles! I can’t wait to try All About Reading! I know it will help speed and understanding of what they are reading!

carolyn b

says:

It makes sense when you think about it, decoding and encoding seem to be quite different skills!

Kathy Eubanks

says:

That makes perfect sense to me. Some of my children have struggled with spelling and when I backed off and only focused on reading the spelling improved with little effort.

Andrea

says:

I 100% agree that reading & spelling should be taught separately. I’m eager to start spelling when we finish aar1!

Sarah

says:

I think it is a great idea to have reading and spell taught separately. I think this would better for my daughter!

Caitlin weaver

says:

I have never thought about it before, but teaching them seperately makes a lot of sense! I think this system would work great for us because I have a hard time explaining why certain sounds aren’t always spelled the same way.

Christina

says:

I completely agree! In our house, learn to read first, then concentrate on spelling.

Michelle

says:

This makes so much sense to me! I never thought about it like that. I’m looking forward to using your programs with my boys!

Victoria R

says:

I am looking at All About Reading and All About Spelling for next year for my son. Good article about having them separate – I honestly hadn’t thought about it too much before looking at your curriculum!

Mary

says:

This article makes a lot of sense. We are doing very well using your reading program. I’ve had a hard time setting aside time for using All About Spelling, although we have already purchased Levels 1 and 2. Any suggestions on scheduling both programs into our week?

Sabrina

says:

I think separating the two is a very good idea.

hong

says:

I love teaching them separately using your curriculum. It just makes sense :) and my kids are able to excel in both because of it!

Nicole

says:

I completely agree that they should be taught separately! I love to read but spelling is difficult. I’m also dyslexic and learning along with my children with AAS has really helped me!

Kim

says:

They should be separate. Some kids excel in one area but not the other.

Kendra

says:

We tried to do both and both suffered! It affected my son’s fluency and decoding skills. Also he didn’t know why words were spelled a certain way, so spelling was frustrating! He dreaded our reading time together because he hated constantly being corrected and he hated misspelling words. I can’t wait to introduce him to this program! I’m hoping his love for our reading time will come back and Language Arts won’t intimidate him anymore.

Maria Swift

says:

Reading is very different then spelling. I have a great reader, but spelling is whole different ball game. AAS makes spelling fun and easy to learn.

dawn

says:

Makes sense. We tried spelling & reading together & the spelling wasn’t “sticking”. Now I know why

Rhonda

says:

We have always taught them separately thanks to AAL press! I could not imagine it any other way!

Michaelle

says:

I think teaching reading separate from spelling in homeschooling helps a lot. My kids were early readers but it took them years to be able to make a connection and start spelling. I think it smarter to focus on reading first and wait until at least 2nd grade to begin a spelling program.

I would love to win this months giveaway..

Jessica

says:

We just started this year and are really enjoying it!

Jacquelyn Binger

says:

My children love AAR. My daughter was struggling learning to read until we started using AAR. We will be finishing level 2 this week.

Christina P.

says:

This is a great article. I teach my kids reading and spelling separately already; it’s nice to see some good feedback to that approach.

Kathy Harris

says:

Your explanation makes a lot of sense. Spelling has always come easily to me, but I assume that is due in part to the fact that I have always been an avid reader. I can definitely see how teaching them separately might benefit my daughter.

Ashleigh S

says:

I do think It makes a difference. My daughter is ready to learn to read, but spelling would be lost on her. Less headache for me!

Lauren K

says:

We do teach reading and spelling separately using AAR and AAS, and it is working fabulously!

Abby

says:

Spelling and reading are very different. I love to read and I’m a terrible speller!

Toni Langille

says:

Teaching Reading and spelling made a huge difference in our home school. My daughter really struggled with both. I chose to focus on one at a time so that all her energy could go to the one subject instead of being frustrated with both and feeling down on herself. This was the best decision for her. Thank you All About Learning!

Laura

says:

Love this curriculum! My daughter is finally learningt o spell!

michelle couch

says:

Would love to have this!!!

Louise O'Neil

says:

We are loving our AAS and hope to add the AAR as soon as possible now that I understand the difference!

Cameron S

says:

Spelling and reading should definitely be learned separately because it’s less confusing with all the weird words the English language has that don’t follow any rules.

LeAnn

says:

I agree that reading and spelling are very different skills. I am a strong reader and a bad speller.

Amanda

says:

This is my first year homeschooling, but I am a former 1st grade teacher. We are doing spelling and reading separately….it just felt more natural that way, but now I know why!!! I LOVE your program and wish I had it when I was teaching public school!

KT

says:

I homeschool, but taught professionally for 15 years. While reading and spelling are obviously related, I have always taught them separately and have found the explicit instruction in one inherently helps progress in the other.

melissa

says:

Great information

Julie G

says:

We have really enjoyed AAR and are just beginning with AAS. We do the lessons separately.

Lacey

says:

We are loving the Pre-Primer curriculum at our house this year and as a former teacher who has taught many children to read… I whole heartedly agree that Reading and Spelling should be separate things!

Carrie

says:

Love All About Spelling and All About Reading!!!

Elyse

says:

I have always taught them seperately, but now I know why!

Jenni

says:

I think it would benefit my child at a kindergarten and 1st grade level when they are trying to learn to read.

Aimee S.

says:

Great article! It makes perfect sense. My son is a great reader, but when it comes to spelling, he has a harder time. Glad I teach them separately or I would be holding back his reading.

Julie Eyler

says:

together :) makes sense that way

Patricia

says:

Sounds reasonable to teach spelling and reading seprately.

Lisa

says:

I plan on teaching reading and spelling separately using both of your programs.

Susan

says:

I think teaching them separately is the way to go. I never even thought to teach them together!

Marna

says:

Good read! Thank u.

Karra

says:

We ae currently using AAR 1 so haven’t come to this issue yet, but thankful to have the information

Melanie Nygaard

says:

I am teaching reading and spelling separately. I am using several reading programs, but I have started AAS Level one to reinforce the phonics rules and we’re loving it!

Leigh

says:

Well, it makes a difference for us. My daughter’s reading level is much higher than her spelling vocabulary. Focusing on spelling separately keeps the stress off and she integrates those rules into her reading. I’m starting to hear “oh, that word is what we learned today,” as she reads.

Cheryl Babrick

says:

We do both, but mostly because spelling is a requirement in our cover school.

Patty W

says:

I use AAS but would love to use AAR as well. Your curriculum is fantastic. Thanks for doing what you do to help homeschooling parents.

Brandee

says:

Great info, thanks for the article.

Jennifer Salas

says:

We use your spelling program and love it. I do agree that spelling and reading should be taught separately. It’s too much for a kid who has dyslexia like my son to grasp too many things at one time.

Kristi

says:

We are teaching reading first, and will pick up with spelling after reading is well established.

Sarah Hill

says:

While closely connected (especially in the beginning) I totally agree that Reading and Spelling are two different subjects and need to be taught separately.

Jessica

says:

I would LOVE to win! We’re planning on using this in our homeschool curriculum!

Christine Schmitz

says:

We absolutely love AAR and AAS. My 5 year old is currently half way through AAR Level 2 and AAS Level 1. This program is absolutely amazing, and I couldn’t imagine trying to teach her with any other program!

Amy

says:

We use both AAS & AAR and teaching them separately is working for my kids!

Vanessa

says:

Already using AAR – getting ready to add AAS to our routine! :)

Cari S.

says:

Love this program!! My girls are doing great and breezing through it!

Darcy H.

says:

We just started with AAS – we tried for a number of years to combine reading and spelling and her reading far surpassed her spelling – which suffered significantly. We’re moving along SO much better now that we’ve split the two subjects!

Janee Campbell

says:

I agree. We use both your reading and spelling curricula. I start the reading first and then I will begin the spelling later when reading is well established. While the curricula go together they each teach different aspects. I really like though that the manipulatives are the same for both.

Jenny

says:

I agree with teaching reading and spelling separately. Reading has come easier for my son and I wouldn’t want to hold back that progress to keep it on par with spelling. I love keeping them separated and teaching to the individual ability.

Christine

says:

We use your programs…and use them separately :) I have nothing but positive things to say about both AAS and AAR. In fact, I’ve recommended them to many homeschooling families I know. We skipped AAR with my eldest daughter who taught herself to read. Using AAS with her was a great way to make sure that she didn’t miss any crucial phonetic instruction. Good reader doesn’t = good speller! We’ve loved the AAS program with her. This year, we have begun AAR, Level One with my Kindergartener, and what a fun year we’re having! She is gradually making progress and her confidence has grown so much! Thank you for such wonderful, reliable programs!

Nicole Walters

says:

I’m intrigued by this concept and I’d love to give it a try. What you say makes a lot of sense.

Lisa Glendinning

says:

Loved this explanation, as I was not sure the difference between the two programs. I have not tried either program yet, but am hoping to be able to afford it soon!

Pamela Bradley

says:

My daughter just finished all about reading level 1 and we started all about spelling level 1 with reading level 2. The spelling has been a breeze for her now and she is having fun!

CASSANDRA JOB

says:

Hmmm…I do not yet own AAR, but I have been using AAS with my 7 yr. old son. I have found myself intertwining reading into the spelling lessons, as I was taught in my OG training. I understand the points made above, but sometimes I think students who are struggling with spelling need the reinforcement that comes from reading the sounds they are struggling to spell. It also breaks up the lesson to move back and forth. I do not think they have to be limited to the skills taught in spelling, though. Why not do a little of both? Often, the current spelling skill/sound can be applied to more advanced words for reading. For example, my son is struggling to spell “ch,” and he has just learned to spell open syllables. He spells syllables like “cho” in isolation, but he reads words like “chosen” that apply the open syllable to reading.

Stacia Emory

says:

Thanks so much for this post. We love AAR – we are in level 2 and are just beginning level 1 of AAS. Your explanation makes this so much clearer as to the “why” of teaching these two subjects separately.

Jenelle Prather

says:

My son has always struggled with spelling. I can’t imagine if I had stopped reading until he could spell the words. He would never have learned to read! On the other hand, I did just stop working on spelling altogether for awhile. It caused him tears and frustration and I couldn’t find a program that he understood. Finding AAS has been so wonderful. He feels accomplished and confident after each lesson. He is still behind in spelling, but he is quickly closing the gap, and smiling while he is doing it. I couldn’t ask for more. Thank you AAS!

Jennifer

says:

I never really thought about spelling being harder that reading but I do think that it is true. We have started this year with AAR and after 10 weeks, we will be adding AAS. So excited!

Erin

says:

I enjoyed this post…however, we teach spelling and reading separately.

Cara

says:

Thanks for this information! We are a first year homeschooling family (starting with kindergarten for our oldest), and I am realizing I could use as much help as I can get for both myself and our son :) I have been looking at the AAR/AAS for months now, and it just seems to make sense… Decided to take the leap and ordered our pre-reading level today. So excited to jump in once it arrives!

Shana R.

says:

I agree with teaching reading and spelling separately. Definitely will be using your curriculum when I begin homeschooling my son and daughter next school year.

Jennifer

says:

I think they are best taught separately.

Mariejkt

says:

For some reason I have never connected teaching spelling and reading. I am glad I haven’t taught them together.

Arielle

says:

Thank you! This method has finally given my child breakthrough in her reading and spelling.

Mary

says:

Thank you! This makes so much sense. My son is working through reading in Level 1 and he struggles alot. We just started Level 1 AAS since he’s almost at the end of Level 1. He isn’t a good writer or speller and would definitely be held back further in reading if we had pushed spelling at the same time. Starting spelling as we are finishing level one reading reinforces skills he learned in reading and is naturally progressing into spelling!

Jeanee

says:

We just started AAR Level 1 this year and I definitely wanted to hold off on AAS until we got a grip on reading. It just makes sense. I didn’t want to complicate learning to read with being frustrated with not being able to read. I can’t wait to start AAS level 1!

Jenny Challand

says:

I will totally be teaching these 2 separately from each other. I’ve tried explaining WHY to my husband for quite some time, but not been very successful. This post has made it all crystal clear to him, so THANK YOU! I love that there will now be unity on our decision for this part of homeschooling.

Kristina Womack

says:

So glad to find this out. Was wondering how to teach both.

Karen Carlsen

says:

I think that teaching reading and spelling together is too overwhelming. It is as simple as that to me. Especially with a child that has a difficult time learning to read. I believe that the spelling should wait until at least those beginning reading skills begin and with my homeschooling only simple spelling starts then. I believe the spelling issues would hold my son back in moving forward in reading, its as simple as that to me.

Kerri Wartnik

says:

I have a twelve year old with dyslexia just finishing AAS 2, and her spelling has improved dramatically. We are certainly grateful that you have two separate programs for reading and spelling! We also regret not knowing about your reading program when my daughter was learning to read.

Cynthia

says:

Great advice

Cheryl Baranski

says:

Thanks for the wonderful info.
Would love to win this to use with
my son. I have so wanted AAS & AAR
for him. This would make it so possible for
me to get it for him.
I so want to see him succeed!!!!!!!!!

Elesha

says:

We love AAR and AAS! I agree with teaching them separately and I’m so thankful for this curriculum that walks me through how to teach them!

Terri Hanenkamp

says:

We teach them separately, using All About Spelling for spelling. My son was reading long before we did any kind of spelling instruction.

Paula

says:

I definitely see the benefits of teaching reading and spelling separately. Reading first! My son is enjoying your programs very much!

Kelly Cunningham

says:

We would love to try your approach! I’ve been teaching reading and spelling; reading skills are great, spelling skills are sadly lacking.

Garilyn

says:

I can definitely see the benefit of teaching these separately.

Heather Culp

says:

I agree that reading and spelling are best taught separately. My son is currently completing AAR 3 and AAS 2 and it is a great fit for him.

Jennifer

says:

This makes so much sense. So glad we are using All About Learning! My kids love it.

Cheryl

says:

I believe they need to be taught separately too. My second grade son can read but cant spell to save his life. I have been looking at this program for quite some time and really want to try it with him.

SnowyRow

says:

I can’t wait to start using your curriculum with my boys! It looks like too much fun!

Carole

says:

Great explanation! I totally agree, and I appreciate your curricula so much! :)

Tinasha

says:

Completely agree with teaching them separately. Now to find an approach that works for each. Have looked into your products but haven’t purchased, would love the chance and the $100 gift card would give our family just that! :)

Laura M

says:

We are currently using AAS1 in our homeschool. My kindergartener loves it (and so do I)!!
Reading is taught as a separate subject. I cannot thank you enough for your programs – they are a staple for our homeschool!

Cindy

says:

I love AAS and AAR. My kids love to do school.

Hannah Mudd

says:

I love the AAL systems. We are going to start AAR with our 4 year old. I definitely agree they should be separate subjects. So far we love AAS in our HS.

Jessica Spencer

says:

I agree that they should be taught separately. As an adult, I’m learning how to spell right along side my son because I never learned how to spell properly. As a child reading came quickly and easily for me so my teachers assumed I could spell. My son is the same way and he memorizes a way something is spelled but doesn’t know why it’s spelled that way and can’t figure out how to spell something he’s unfamiliar with. All About Spelling has been great for teaching him!

Brenda Walker

says:

Thank you for this article! Reading and Spelling would be a great addition to our homeschooling

Heather McKenzie Carter

says:

I never really thought about it that way honestly. It makes a lot of sense. I had heard rave reviews about All About Spelling which is why we used this program. With twins in Kindergarten now this year (HS), I’d love to use the AAR program with them.

Sarah

says:

Very interesting! Thank you

Catherine England

says:

We are teaching reading to our six year old, but have not even begun to tackle spelling yet. I think that teaching them separately makes sense.

Sarah V.

says:

This makes so much sense! Looking forward to reading more about this approach.

Kerrianne Gahr

says:

Highly recommend your products – they are making a difference in our homeschool – with one student who has difficulty with reading and spelling. Wonderful products, wonderful quality….we’ll be continuing!

Bethany M

says:

Never thought about WHY to do it seperately before. I think both AA programs would be an asset in our homeschool!

Suzanne

says:

We are very excited to start All About Spelling soon!

Kathy L

says:

I think teaching them separate is important.

Lisa

says:

Just starting K with my son and have heard great things about your program. Would love to give it a roll!

Carrie

says:

Teaching reading and spelling separately is a great idea. My older jewel loves reading but gets so absorbed that she would rather guess the meaning that stop and look up the definition. My younger jewel will try to get out of reading if she can and I believe if she was confident with her spelling, then reading would be more enjoyable as she likes to know the meaning of words as she reads them. C.

Jessica Pope

says:

Yes, I do teach reading & spelling separately for my daughter. We haven’t used your curriculum yet, but I have been looking into trying it. Thank you for the information!

Leonard S

says:

I think the aas is already helping my son and would love to use the aar with his.

Jillji

says:

Thank you for the clarification! I am just starting out with two kinders and trying to learn what works best and why.

Shelby

says:

Your teaching method is brilliant and works wonders in our household! We’d be lost without your programs!

Rhonda

says:

I agree with this blog site. I taught reading first and am now adding in spelling with my second grader and he is doing very well.

Madonna

says:

Definitely think you have to teach the seperately. My son picked up reading quickly, but I can’t say the same for his spelling. Spelling is definitely more difficult, especially with all the spelling rules in the English language.

Juliana Park

says:

we haven’t started but I would love to win so I can help 1/5 kids that struggles with reading!

Sarah

says:

I think this is a great point! My oldest is actually doing AAR 2 and AAS 2 simultaneously, which is interesting because she’s covering the same topics at the same time. However, that’s because she’s doing a reading program far behind where her actual reading level is (we’re reviewing concepts to make sure she actually knows the rules and hasn’t just memorized words). My younger daughter is also doing AAR 2, about 10 lessons behind, and is just starting the first lessons of AAS where you memorize the phonemes, and I think it works great that way, too. We really love AAR/AAS and Ziggy around here!

Sarah

says:

I have never really thought about this. My oldest is just beginning to read and write. This is good information to think about as we make curriculum choices.

Jodiann

says:

I did teach spelling and reading separately. your explanation makes perfect sense.

Danielle

says:

Yes, I wholeheartedly agree. My daughter is a much more proficient reader than speller at 6 years old. The curriculum her UMS school uses is, in my opinion, awful for spelling. We plan to do AAS at home to give her a solid foundation.

Amy Myers

says:

I am using both at home with my sons. It sometimes takes more than one day for us to complete a lesson but we are seeing improvements in both areas. I really like both and will continue using both as long as we can.

Melissa

says:

Great explanation!

Definitely agree! I love having my girls go at the pace they need in each subject!

I agree…they should be taught separately.

Ashley Marquis

says:

My daughter reads much better than she spells! This would be so helpful!

Hillary Hester

says:

I agree! Seems to work so much better!

Sarah

says:

Wow, I never really thought about this before. I always assumed that learning to spell what we are reading would reinforce the new words we’re learning. But, since this hasn’t been working, I see the point of NOT teaching it together. My concern is in it becoming too many new words at once, which can be very overwhelming to my add/dyslexic son. I’m willing to try something else, though, since he’s still struggling to read at a 2nd grade level as a 4th grader. Better start saving my money!

Linda

says:

I do not teach reading and spelling together, but I have considered it. In the past I have not produced good spellers. My children all love to read. I have level 1 & 2 All about Spelling this year. I thought if Mom could learn a few tricks maybe it would benefit my ability to help my children spell correctly.

Sarah

says:

I love this idea! I think this would really help with our daily lesson struggles.

Tara

says:

I feel it is important to break most lessons down to it’s simplest form. [unless my homeschooled child prefers me to speed things up :) ] that’s why we homeschool, it’s all our way on our time. yay!

erin

says:

I agree that spelling and reading should not be bundled. Too often our children are on different levels academically. My 7 year old just started AAS 3, yet he reads on a forth grade level. Being able to purchase curriculum a la cart makes for a better fit for most children

Mel

says:

Great article!

Amber Ellis

says:

Thank you for explaining this! I am using both AAR and AAS with two of my children, so I love your curriculum!

Kristina Watt

says:

I do think teaching reading and spelling would make a difference in my homeschool!

Chana Madvig

says:

My son can all ready read, but spelling is a different story. Looking forward to using All About Spelling.

Lyssie Silver

says:

I have already had success teaching my son phonics which he needed desperately through these methods and All about Spelling.

Terri Slemp

says:

We recently started using AAS with my son (a struggling reader who attends public school). My sister homeschools her children and introduced me to AAS & AAR after I mentioned to her that my son was struggling with reading. She already had the AAS curriculum so we began using it immediately. I have already seen an improvement in my son’s spelling tests at school!! I am hoping to to be able to start him on the AAR soon, but can’t start until we can save enough money for it. I can see how teaching AAS & AAR separately would benefit him. With such a wide range of spellings with only a few sounds, he is struggling with his current spelling list. (i.e. paid vs made) It is hard for him to keep them all straight. But if we had AAR he could read the words and move on without having to keep them separate in his mind.

Cherie

says:

I focus on reading. But, I also teach spelling. They are on Lev. 1 AAR. They want to do some writing. Kind. and 1st grade. I do not focus on spelling. I started AAS Lev. 1 and it is easy for them. They are moving along quickly. I wish I had started it earlier. I make the kids “pass” everything. Sounds, “lightning fast” word cards, Fluency sheet sections, stories in the books, and other simple reading books that compliment AAR. They have to not miss a word on a section, word, story, etc. to “pass”. It’s been slow for awhile, but recently it is going faster. They are so happy and excited when they pass. I use 4 different reading sets to get lots of reading practice at the level they are at. Bob books, etc. I just make sure they compliment where they are at in AAR. This gives variety without reading beyond their lev. I’ve found that the kids need to read a lot at each lev. before moving on. I am a grandparent homeschooling my grandkids. These kids are dyslexic, mine were not. Even more reason to not move too fast. Slow start, but, now they are both moving faster. Kindergartener got 20 words “lightning fast” one day. For KInd. I write the word on 1/2 notecard and staple them in a column and put that on the wall. They love to see how long their word list gets. !st grader this year had 70 words last year at the end of Kind. Real sight words (the, of, etc,) go on another list. It is very short.

Kathy

says:

Your “grandmotherly” commitment is commendable! Keep up the good work and do not hesitate to let us know if we can be of assistance to you!

Kathy
Customer Care Representative

Tristan

says:

Yes, we prefer to teach them separately! If I’m being honest, we skip teaching spelling until a child has been a fluent reader for a few years. They need a lot of print exposure first. Then we begin working on their trouble areas. We did use AAS for a while several years ago. It just became too much time teaching with 8 children age 12 and under. We love the AAR readers and wish we could afford the readers for level 3.

Kathy

says:

Hi Tristan,

Glad to hear you were able to give AAS a try! I hear from moms often who have a “quiver full” of little ones and my heart goes out to each one of you! I noticed this link on our Facebook page which discusses ways to involve the kids in the actual teaching process for AAS: https://www.facebook.com/allaboutlearningpress/posts/528399000568258. Maybe this will inspire you? Not sure what you’re currently teaching but just thought I’d throw it out there! Give us a call (715-477-1976) or email us (support@allaboutlearningpress.com) if we can ever be of assistance to you!

Kathy
Customer Care Representative

Sherri

says:

I don’t really know if it would be good to teach spelling and reading separately, but I would be willing to try it!

Julie Williamson

says:

I think the reason we have weak spellers is because we have weak readers. The more you read, the easier spelling is!

Martha

says:

Interesting. I certainly makes sense.

Tori

says:

My 5 year old Daughter would cry when I would ask her to Read to me. We started AAS 2 months ago and completed it today. I now find her reading words wherever we are on her own. Thank you AAS We love this program. I’m wondering where I should go from here AAS level 2 or try AAR level 1. What would you recommend?

Kathy

says:

Hi Tori,

You may want to look at the Placement Tests for AAR before committing to a level. If you would like more focus on decoding skills, reading fluency and comprehension , then the AAR program will benefit you. If you would like to continue what you’ve started with spelling skills, then you would want to continue to the next level of AAS. If you choose to do both, one program will reinforce the other and your daughter’s confidence will grow in both reading and spelling. Just be sure to schedule separate sessions (approximately 20 minutes for each) in your day, perhaps one in the morning and the other a little later on. Call us (715-477-1976) or email us (support@allaboutlearningpress.com) if you have questions! We’d love to help!

Kathy
Customer Care Representative

Jenny P.

says:

I like the idea of teaching the separately. The flow also works well as a preview/review method if you use both the AAS and AAR programs. My daughter strength was actually in Spelling over Reading. Focusing on her spelling and learning the rules to that process helped boost her confidence in reading as begun to further her progress in that area as well.

Meg

says:

I’d never thought of teaching them separately, but it makes sense to allow a child to progress as quickly or slowly as they need in each area.

Jen

says:

In reading we do okay. There is definitely room for improvement. We pulled our oldest two out of public school 4.5 years ago. I was very nervous about teaching my youngest to read & put it off until he was 7. His favorite thing to read is the Bible. Spelling is the area everyone could use help in. My middle child struggles with it and with confidence in spelling what he already knows. Today we are making them all do the same level of words as a review. We can’t wait to try your curriculum.

Kim

says:

This makes a lot of sense. I see it in my older three children. The first two read well but their spelling is atrocious (hope I spelled that right!). The next one is really struggling with reading, but has very neat writing and is concerned about proper spelling.

BreeAnna McManus

says:

Interesting… They are taught separately at the school my son goes to.

Sara

says:

I think that everything I’ve read points out the brain uses different parts of the brain for reading and spelling and it probably agree because the English language is so confusing that you use different rules to sound out a word read it but different rules to spell it. I like be able to have different levels in spelling from what we are reading.

Melissa

says:

This makes a lot of sense. Would love to try this curriculum with my son.

melisa

says:

When I started homeschooling I thought my kids would automatically learn to spell when they were learning to read, but soon discovered that was not the case. We implemented spelling and saw how that was necessary. I love the foundational understanding that AAS provides!

Karen

says:

I would love to win a gift certificate to help pay for our homeschool needs!

Yvette Townsend

says:

Maybe that is our problem. OK starting tomorrow we will teach them separately. Wish us luck!

Mrs Long

says:

Thanks for all of the helpfull information,

Teaching reading and spelling separately makes complete sense. We just started using AAS this year, and so far ut is going pretty well. :)

Anna

says:

I absolutely agree. I did not understand this when I first started homeschooling because spelling always came very easy for me in school. Now that I am teaching my own children, I realize the importance of a separate spelling lesson, apart from a reading lesson, so that they can develop their spelling skills as well as their reading skills. Great post!

Shelli

says:

Wow! What a difference this has made in the life of my youngest son. We worked through our previous spelling program since I owned it and it was sufficient for my three older children. We pushed through and although he was a great reader, he stuggled to spell. I LOVE the way All About Spelling teaches using tactile methods. We started at the beginning of the program when Peter was in the 4th grade. We flew through the first three books that year. Now he is finishing Level 6 and looking forward to Level 7! How about All About Grammar?? Thank you!

Sandi

says:

That was really good information to know. Thank you for making it so easy to understand why they should be taught separately.

FGVance

says:

My son reads very well but just cannot spell well. We decided to keep these separate for the very reasons you mentioned because we didn’t want him to fall behind in reading.

Daily Woman (Lacey)

says:

I already teach Reading and Spelling separate and I agree I think it is better that way.

Bethany Furness

says:

I’ve just started looking into both of the All About series, and what I’ve seen so far is great. I think it’s a good idea to teach reading and spelling separately and your explanation makes so much sense. I feel like my daughter is already teaching herself to read, and I don’t remember “learning” to read myself. But I know my spelling education could have been much better and All About Spelling will be a great tool for helping me teach my daughter.

Christy Ormston

says:

My family just purchased the spelling and reading program. We find that they are easy to use and fun too! We also really appreciate the affordability of both programs!

Marisa

says:

I have used another well known curriculum for my son who is dyslexic, we have changed to all about spelling and all about reading and we love it! It is very easy to use and I love the daily practice and review that they get in each lesson. My son has gone from exasperation to feeling very proud of himself and that is priceless. Thank you for this program.

Elizabeth

says:

I understand why my son has problems with spelling and that this is normal and that there is not a problem after watching your video. Thank you.
Elizabeth

Yassi

says:

I would have never thought the importance of separating reading and spelling. I did always belief they went hand in hand and would be taught together. But I also see that as we have moved away from traditional teaching we have lost the ability to spell as ours grandparents did. Being able to spell correctly is vital as an adult and I hope with this All About Spelling program I will be starting my children on the right path to successful adults.

Johnne Orelchikov

says:

Thank you for explaining this. Now I have a place to send those Moms who ask me this question. We love AAS!! The best thing that I have ever used with my dyslexic daughter.

Amy P

says:

Interesting! Never thought about the advantages of splitting spelling and reading in this way. Makes total sense though. Would love to try both curriculum’s for my 10 y/o son who struggles with reading and spelling and is going through vision therapy for difficulty with smooth eye tracking. This is the type of program that I think would benefit him.

Beth S

says:

Reading & spelling definitely work better when they’re taught separately. :)

Diana

says:

Loved, needed and appreciated the necessary differentiation made between spellin
and reading, in both instruction and learning. Absolutely love the difference I’ve seen in both my children and their abilities t understand, and get excited about having time using AAS everyday.

Amy E

says:

We are new at homeschooling as my daughter is just in Kindergarten. But I have a background teaching the young ones and I totally agree with everything you say. I think it would reduce much frustration at home to keep them separate. I actually haven’t started any kind of spelling work with my daughter. That will come much later. Thanks for this article!

Micia Rogers

says:

I agree that it works best to teach reading and spelling separately. I have been using the spelling books for my oldest daughter who already knows how to read well and we both love it. I want to try the reading curriculum for my youngest daughter and the $100 would be a blessing for us so we could start the reading with little one and purchase the last level of spelling for my oldest.

Mrs. Cordova

says:

Hi, I have enjoyed your spelling program and it had help my children, we are doing now level four, however I have a young son who is 7 and is dyslexic how your reading program will help him.

Love the way you put this! A friend asked me this question recently and I feel my answer was a little too full of teacher jargon. I’ll be sure to send her link to this!

I always wondered why you separated the two subjects. That makes a lot of sense though! We love your products so much! :-) I now also know why I am not a great speller ;-)

Bethany

says:

I love your spelling program! I look forward to using the reading program in the future!

Nicole

says:

I teach reading and spelling seperate because my son has loved and excells at reading but was not quite ready to sit down and focus on spelling until recently. We love your AAS program, just started Level 2. Thank you for this program!

mandy

says:

This reminds me of the book, “The Logic of English.” Makes sense to do it this way!

Tara

says:

Wow! I learned a lot just by reading this! I am currently teaching reading and spelling separate…and different texts for both children. I would LOVE to try All about spelling after reading this!

Amy

says:

Thanks for a great curriculum

Susan W.

says:

I was teaching reading and spelling together but about a week ago I decided to teach them separately. I had noticed my daughter having a hard time spelling words and since I have changed things up, she has improved. This is good information.

Leslie H.

says:

I made the mistake of trying to teach my daughter both last year. Unfortunately, reading was falling by the wayside and she didn’t make hardly any progress last year. This year, we are doing reading only (she’s only in 2nd grade) and will start the spelling again next year.

Thanks for affirming what I had unfortunately learned by experience!

danielle

says:

I believe in teaching reading and spelling separately. The English language is difficult, by breaking it down it becomes more manageable. Reading has been learned more easily in our house, so now we can focus specifically on spelling.

Alida Rodriguez

says:

This would be AMAZING in my homeschooling my 4 dyslexic kiddos, and two non.

Sharon

says:

I have always struggled with spelling. My favorite quote is, “Tis is a poor man who can only spell a word one way.” Of course throughout history, there were often many accepted spellings of a word.

Lindsay K

says:

Very interesting and definitely makes sense! :)

Maya

says:

Very interesting article and well defended position. It totally makes sense, and I admit I would have spelled two out of your 3 words (from the beginning test) incorrectly. :-) I love the logic and simplicity of your program. We are doing AAR with my preschooler now, but I can;t wait to get to the spelling curriculum as well.

Terri Moore

says:

I think it does need to be a separate subject. My ds is a good reader and great at figuring out the meaning of unknown words while engrossed in a story. The spelling however does not always stick. I have read great things about AAS and it sounds great even for older students.

samina

says:

I am doing AAR 1 with my son and feel that among other books/ programs out there, AAR is really a good fit for him.

Katy

says:

Very interesting perspective, we are researching your program now.

Judy

says:

Thank you! That was very helpful. I have a daughter that I am getting ready to start level 1 with and I was wondering about combining them. Now I know it is best not too. Thanks!!!!

Carrie

says:

Thank you for sharing this information! I am just starting homeschooling and bought both All About Reading and Spelling for my 1st and 3rd graders. I cannot wait to get started next week :) And I am excited to see my kids learning through your program!

Debbie F

says:

I totally agree with teaching them separately. My daughter has always had trouble with spelling but loves to read. She also loves to write. To not squash that love, I try not to over-mark her paper with the spelling corrections.

Melody

says:

I think it makes a lot of sense to teach reading and spelling separately.

Alyson Noto

says:

Thank you so much for this! When I decided to homeschool my children this year I planned on a buying a complete package, and that fell to the wayside. I have been so lost, it’s three months into the school year and I still find myself trying to find a real starting point, especially with reading.

Cristina

says:

Great article and awesome line of thought.
I never thought it that way!
English is not my first language, and AAS has been helping ME to help my children learn how to spell well.
Thanks!!!

This makes so much sense! I am starting to homeschool my children. One is a natural reader but is struggling with spelling, and the other is not really struggling with reading but she is not the natural reader that her brother is. I’ve been at a loss as to what to do with them, but I think I have the answer now! Thanks so much for all of your hard work! I can’t wait to check out your products. :)

Jessica A.

says:

Thanks for explaining and I do agree that reading and spelling should be taught separately. I never thought about it until I read your post and it makes so much sense. That’s how I’m going to teach my son I believe that it will make a difference.

Katie

says:

I am just starting this journey of homeschooling, and my oldest child is in first grade. He is learning how to read, but we haven’t touched on spelling yet. Your approach seems to make sense. I am interested to learn more about your products.

clara

says:

When I first started looking into your curriculum, I read this same thing on your website. I thought about it for a moment, then realized it made complete sense. Our first grader is much more comfortable with reading than spelling at this point. We’ll certainly be taking your advice by continuing with level 1 of reading, and once he’s mastered that, move him onto level 1 spelling. Thanks for the awesome advice! By the way, our son absolutely loves your curriculum…especially the little stars at the end! :)

Suzanne

says:

Wow! Great article! It really made sense! I am looking forward to using your program with my son.

Barb

says:

After reading your information on it, I think they definately should be taught seperately. Thanks for this information. I was going to buy next years curriculum that had them together!!

Liz

says:

I’m learning about your curriculum, as it comes highly recommended, and I’m interested in trying it.

Marie, I have been receiving your emails for quite some time; but today’s piqued my interest! I am an OT with a clinic that specializes in the assessment and remediation of children’s handwriting skills. My work is gratifying, to say the least; however, my students’ inability to spell is not. I strive for functional use of their handwriting skills, especially when it comes to cursive; but their spelling errors can often override their success with legibility. Sometimes I can’t comprehend their meaning in their sentences, and sometimes neither can they! I am most distressed with this and am looking into the link between handwriting struggles and spelling challenges. I am interested in your program and am considering giving it a try.

Lindsey

says:

Teaching reading and spelling as separate subjects makes sense. My older son learned to read quickly and I did not push spelling. Now I am having regrets about that decision. I am thinking of started AAS with him. I am using AAS with my 9 yo son and he is doing very well. I do hope it will help with his reading because he struggles with that.

Kathy

says:

I’m not sure if your “older son” is the 9 yo or if there is another, but you might find this article from our Blog of interest (http://blog.allaboutlearningpress.com/using-all-about-spelling-with-older-students/). I’ve just reviewed some comments above yours which testify that doing AAS has greatly helped with reading skills.

Let us know if we can be of help to you!

Kathy
Customer Care Representative

Melissa Shoop

says:

I think teaching reading and spelling separately is a great idea, and I know it would help my daughter!

Sonya Milu

says:

My son really enjoys you curriculum and it is such a joy watching him learn and build his confidence as we progress through the lessons! God bless you!

Dena

says:

I am loving AAR for my son. Awesome program!

Tricia Roush

says:

I found teaching spelling using your program improved my kids reading! They had a basic phonics foundation, but really, once they had the basics, your program kicked up their reading a couple of notches. (2 of my 3 are probably dyslexic, so your program has been a god-send!)

Marilu

says:

Thanks for the explanation. I am using All About Reading and All About Spelling with my kids and love it!

Christine Pogon

says:

I ABSOLUTELY believe teaching reading and spelling separately is a wise idea. We do it in our home school, too!

Odemaris

says:

I wonder if the writing program will be appropriate for adults with dyslexia?

Kathy

says:

Hi Odemaris,

Did you mean “reading program”? We do not currently have a writing program, though in All About Spelling there is an element of writing included in dictation exercises. There are adults using our spelling program (not counting those that confess how much they are learning by teaching their children!) with great success. This Orton-Gillingham approach is noted for its success in teaching people of all ages with dyslexia. You might find this article from our Spelling Resource Center helpful as we explain the key characteristics of our approach (http://www.allaboutlearningpress.com/orton-gillingham-approach).

Let us know if we can be of assistance!

Kathy
Customer Care Representative

Odemaris

says:

I wish they teach my kids in school the same way like in this program.

Debbie

says:

We are loving your AAR 1 with my four yr old!!

Mary Beth

says:

Makes sense to me!

Shanna

says:

Awesome! My son will benefit greatly from this, he has struggled. I will look into the All About series soon will benefit gr

Hillary Hester

says:

Very well put! I highly recommend this way of teaching language. I use the All About Spelling program for my son. He is advanced in reading but slower in spelling, at least for now.

Catherine Hafer

says:

Thank you so much for your program!! I have two kids that were struggling readers and now are enjoying the reading program and my oldest is doing your spelling and we have seen a drastic improvement in her spelling! So thankful for the All About Learning programs!!

Karin Swanson

says:

I think it would be good to teach them separately because each child seems to pick up on reading and spelling at different rates. I need to focus on each one separately to make sure she has the tools she needs for both.

Melissa

says:

That makes perfect sense! Our oldest is a great reader and speller, but our kindergarten aged twins would really benefit from this.

Jaime

says:

We are using both the AAR and AAS programs. I can see a huge difference in the way my son learns each subject. These two programs have been a great help for him.

Steph T

says:

We were introduced to AAS through IEW, and so far I have really appreciated this program.

Karrie Richert

says:

I love that the two are separate, and can be taught at the student’s pace!

Andrea

says:

I love separating reading and spelling. It has really taken the stress off my daughter. In fact, since I started AAR with her, we have chosen to complete a level and then go through that level for AAS. Less subjects all at once, which means we can focus on the one were are doing more. So happy to have found All About Learning! Wonderful curriculums! Wonderful resources – like this article! Thanks!

Paula Sauder

says:

As a classroom teacher turned homeschooling mom, I can wholeheartedly agree with the need to teach spelling and reading separately. It is true that spelling takes more time to master than reading. The great thing is that while I am teaching spelling, my boys are learning spelling rules that in turn help to make them better readers. My kids love using the All About Spelling program and so do I. I highly recommend All About Spelling and All About Reading!

Laura K

says:

Good information for us newbies just starting our homeschooling experience. Looking forward to using this curriculum soon.

Christine Mayfield

says:

Yes I think it would be better for our children. Right now we are teaching reading and spelling together but this does make a lot more sense. To separate the two, teach reading first and then spelling. I will have to try this on our younger 3 children when it is time for them to start school.

Rosie

says:

I enjoy teaching spelling and reading separately. Spelling is so much fun when you spend time teaching the spelling rules and give children the tricks of the trade for spelling.

Cassie

says:

We love this program and will continue to use it.

Lori Duncan

says:

I agree totally, great info presented here.

Ruwaydah

says:

Thanks for the article. By trial and error I realized that just because my boys could read, it didn’t mean that they would know how to spell. I ordered All About Spelling and I’m looking forward to seeing my boys becoming great spellers. I was/am so thrilled that you ship to South Africa! Thank you for that!!

D Kim

says:

This idea of separating spelling and reading is really something to think about. We are doing All About Spelling now and I like the way it smoothly progresses and celebrates achievements of even the slowest reader. I’ll have to look into the All About Reading more. If it has the user friendly style of the Spelling program I just may have to get it.

Amy D

says:

I agree that a child’s reading level is very different from their spelling ability – We study both separately around here too!

Sylvia

says:

Thoroughly agree with you about teaching reading & spelling separately. I live in India and ordering a great curriculum like this is out of the question. If you could have an option to offer it without the physical components, it would be great.

Lynn

says:

It totally makes sense that reading and spelling should be taught separately by the way your article explained it. I would love to try using your products on my kids.

Kristen

says:

This does make sense. We have used a curriculum in the past that taught reading and spelling together and I can see how it slowed down reading progress.

Billie Jean

says:

Wow, great point! Definitely taking this approach!

Melanie

says:

Great post! I agree!

Kim

says:

We’ve almost finished AAR Level 1… a couple more lessons and we’ll be ready to start AAS Level 1. Thank you so much for writing this curriculum! We love them both!

katie

says:

I can see where teaching them separately and together at times will help the child. I also think it depends on the child.

Lyndsay

says:

I am loving this program and am hoping to incorporate it next year!

Shelly

says:

I really enjoyed reading your post and was following all your reasons why it is best to teach spelling and reading at the same time! currently my twin daughters are in 1st grade and we are 3/4 done with AAR 1. We are looking forward to starting AAR 2, and I was wondering if we should be doing AAS 1? I would love to try doing AAR and AAS together, thanks!!!

Kathy

says:

Hi Shelly,
I hope the blog was clear enough in presenting reasons NOT to teach reading and spelling together (your comment mentions “why it is best to teach spelling and reading at the same time”). Yet, your question raises a good point … while letting your twins progress confidently in reading as you begin AAR L2, you may at any time also begin to introduce them to spelling concepts beginning with AAS L1! So you can teach the two subjects concurrently in your day, but technically NOT at the same time. Scheduling separate teaching times for each subject will continue to provide the benefits mentioned in our blog!

Hope this helps!

Shelly

says:

Handwriting is a struggle for my son. He is an excellent reader, but we waited until second grade to work on spelling because correct letter formation just took extra practice. I’m glad we could teach the two separately.

Kathy

says:

Absolutely great point, Shelly!

For the benefit of students who aren’t yet ready for writing, our All About Reading program does not require any handwriting! This gives you freedom to allow your eager reader the benefit of solid reading instruction without having to be held back or slowed down to wait for writing skills. We’re glad this worked out to your son’s advantage!

Kathy
Customer Care Representative

Chris

says:

We’ve always taught them separately. I agree they should not be combined.

Marsha Wells

says:

We love “All About Spelling”! I teach reading and spelling separately, but I never thought about why. Your explanation makes a lot of sense.

Margarita Rivera

says:

You make very good points to do them separately! It makes a lot of sense to do it that way. I love this program. Thank you for making this for all of us.

Tia B.

says:

This is our first year with AAR. I love it and my daughter is doing really well with it. It makes sense the way they explain keeping AAR and AAS separate.

Marilois

says:

Makes so much sense! Thank you for giving me a new perspective!

melissa

says:

I can’t wait to try this program!

Krista

says:

Our 7 yr old was having such a difficult time learning to read that we decided to try All About Spelling this year and see if that would help his reading. It has and it is slowly removing his fear of reading. We love it! Thank you so much!

Tabitha

says:

We use both of your programs and LOVE LOVE LOVE them. With 3 children in our family we go through both your curriculum a lot… we would love to get a gift certificate!

Julie S.

says:

I appreciate this post; it makes so much sense. We use AAR and AAS, so we are teaching separately.

lin

says:

my son has already learned the reading, but struggled with the spelling. I am very excited that I may be given the opportunity to do both, TOGETHER!

Michelle

says:

I taught them separately to my oldest and am ready to start AAS with him!

Esther

says:

We tried a couple of other spelling programs before we found AAS and neither worked well (and one of them gets rave reviews!) for us. My son and I both LOVE AAS — it totally makes sense to me and it’s really nice to have something that is laid out so that I can open it up and go — no prep required! I wish AAR had been around when I started out teaching reading.

lauren martin

says:

We began teaching them separately this year and I can tell a big difference. He catching on to the process of spelling a lot easier. We use AAR and AAS. Thanks for two great curriculums.

LW

says:

We are using AAR Level 1 and don’t plan to begin AAS until next year. I am so glad that your program’s design doesn’t jump in to spelling too quickly. It allows children to read well enough to understand that spelling has a purpose. Painless, perfect and twaddle-free. Thank you!