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Copyright 2006 Julie Shepherd Knapp
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Copyright 2006 Julie Shepherd Knapp.  All rights reserved.
about the book
The Homeschool Diner's Guide to
Homeschooling by Subject
Language Arts

Spelling Resources for Homeschoolers

by Julie Shepherd Knapp, copyright 2006

Options for Complete Programs, Workbooks, Resource Books,
Catch-Up Programs, and Enrichment

There are various theories behind the teaching of spelling... and there
are spelling programs that align with each theory. Some focus on
memorizing lists of frequently used words, some focus on learning to
spell letter sounds and recognize spelling patterns, some rely on
learning and using spelling rules.  Some provide a combination of these
approaches.  All provide drill and review for memorization, but some
programs include much more practice than others.

Which program you should choose, and, for that matter, whether or not
you want to go with a formal program at all, depends on your child.  In
general, children who struggle with spelling need a more intensive
program than children who pick up spelling easily. Children who really
struggle with spelling, or have a spelling disability, such as dyslexia,
need a specialized program with a proven track record for helping
these children learn -- most (but not all) of them are based on the
Orton-Gillingham Method and use a sequential, multi-sensory approach
which includes extensive drill and review.  

Children who can easily pick up spelling as they read and write (with
maybe just a little instruction about spelling patterns and spelling rules)
may be fine with a low-key spelling workbook that just covers the
basics.   Parents may be able to cover the basics with their child, even
without purchasing a workbook or program -- just by reading together
and discussing spelling, and by providing input as the child writes.  

Some spelling programs include an emphasis on building vocabulary by
incorporating challenging words that may be new to the child.  Others
include lists of words used most frequently in the English language.  
Some programs draw words from those that the student mis-spells in
daily writing.   
Below are a variety of spelling programs and workbooks that many
homeschoolers use, and are happy with.  There are also some
resources for constructing your own spelling program, rather than
buying a curriculum and some that may help older students "catch-up"
in spelling..  There are many other spelling programs out there, so do
look around if none of these is quite what you're looking for.

Click on the names of the programs to read more about them at the
publishers' websites.

Curriculum and Other Resources:

Complete Spelling Programs

Spelling Workbooks

Spelling Resource Books for Educators

Spelling Remediation, "Catch-Up's" and Enrichment

Other Resources -- enter your child's spelling list, and they can play
games involving those words, take quizzes, or even hear the words
used in a sentence, includes some standard lists by grade-level

A.Word.A.Day -- sign up for a free e-mail subscription to receive one
new word every day (with definition and pronunciation)

Dunk a Duck -- hangman game for the younger crowd, a duck makes
funny comments while you play and gets dunked if you lose. *Bonus* if
you register (FREE) you can enter your own list of words to play with!!

Hogwarts Hangman -- test your harry Potter vocabulary

Halloween Hangman -- with a skeleton who makes snide remarks

Five Guidelines for Learning to Spell -- great tips and a method

Small object of grammatical desire by Finlo Rohrer of the BBC
News Magazine -- article about the decline of hyphen usage
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language arts