Sunday, July 31, 2011

Phonics & Spelling Links

There are so many different options out there for the homeschooling family, but I'll pass on a few links that will hopefully help

All About Spelling
- This is well known within homeschooling circles. I just finished sorting & fixing the program for us, and I must say, it looks good! Another helpful link for Aussie's out there is the Spelling Adjustments on Aussie Homeschool. When going through, I noticed its a little outdated (not by much, they obviously have just updated a few dictations, and words since then, it wasn't hard at all to figure the rest out myself). Since it has to be adjusted many people found this too hard, but I assure you it's not. It took me 20 minutes (including interruptions) to alter Level 1. There is currently also books out for Level 1 & 2 for the All About Reading program, teacher guides to come out for AAR later this year/early next year. They also have Spelling Games (Phonogram Bingo & File Folders) and All About Homophones (meant to start from round Level 3)

ClickNRead - We did try Smartyants (and do have the Phonics pups) but I would honestly say that Clickn Read is a much better program. In Smartyants, the words move around (down walls etc) making them hard to "catch". Also, since it allows it, my daughter spent a fair amount of time just changing the clothing on her Ant *sigh*. Clickn Read focuses on the actual lessons, but still has humour, and is a pay once program, whereas Smarty Ants is yearly.

Headsprouts - If you can afford it, this is another option, but the pricing is quite steep. I have been meaning to have a trial (if thats possible) with it, to see what its like, but keep forgetting. A number of homeschooling families who use this, love it.

Reading Eggs - Reading Eggs seems to use both Phonics and whole word approach (focusing a bit too much on whole word for some children) this is another one I meant to trial, as through our homeschool group membership, we can get this for a pittance.

Fitzroy Readers- A lot of Aussie mums adore this. I have to say I do too, but we have enough books, and I would be afraid about it lasting through 3 children, solution - they have a sounding out reader software that is like the book, along with games & activities, it is pricey though, I would only recommend it if you had a child that hates bookwork, have mutiple children you plan to use it for, or are on an unlimited budget ;). I am still erring whether to purchase this, it looks perfect, but the cost is very prohibitive, I am going to look to see whether they have any videos of it. The Word skills book is possibly brilliant whether you use Fitzroy or not. And the teachers guide will hold your hand and give you lots of ideas.

Explode the Code - We are currently using the Primers and love these, so will continue on with Books 1-4, and the Code cards. I love that it introduces a little bit of writing at the same time, but not enough to overwhelm the child thats not fully ready for copywork. I originally also looked at Explode the Code Online, but have been told the graphics are quite terrible, its very slow and can freeze, so we'll stick with just the workbooks.

As mentioned in the Preschool Resources we'll also be including the K4 Pack from Confessions of a homeschooler.

Readers - We have lots of readers available, from Sonlights mini 27book pack (from LA K), to a heap of Dr Suess Books, numerous picture books, Queen Homeschool Phonics Readers and the first 3 sets of Bob Books, so we are pretty covered reader wise ;)

I hope these links help some in your search for the perfect curriculum .


Miss E.


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