We are currently using Level 3 of All About Spelling. I love this program. My son has Dyslexic issues, so a typical 'memorize a list of words and take a test' program won't work for him. I wanted a program that would teach the whys not just how to spell certain words. Learning the spelling rules is just so much more important than memorizing the spelling of certain words. I also like the fact that this program is multi-sensory. It is also a very incremental program. It really seems to cover everything. It focuses on the sounds of letters & blends, teaches spelling rules, and the exceptions. Normally, I'm not a fan of any curriculum that is 'scripted.' However, I don't mind it with this program. We don't use it exactly the way it says. We tweak it just a little to work for us.
Each day starts with review. We choose 10-20 cards to review from the Phonogram, Sound, and Key cards. We keep all the cards together, the ones from this level & the previous levels. We choose the cards for review at random. He chooses the cards (blindly) and how many (minimum of 10 cards). The lesson starts with the review of those cards.
Monday and Tuesday, we cover the 'New Teaching' concepts. We start with the words on either Tuesday or Wednesday, depending on how many words there are total, including the extra words for reinforcement. I split the words evenly, or close to it, over two or three days. When we do the words, we do them 3 ways. First, he spells them with tiles. Next, he writes them on the whiteboard. Finally, he finger spells them using ASL. Friday is our review day. He chooses a minimum of 10 word cards, from all the word cards so far (including those from previous levels). The lesson ends with dictation sentences. On Monday & Tuesday, he does 3 dictation sentences. Wednesday through Friday, he does 2 dictation sentences each. He writes the sentences on the whiteboard. I write them in his Spelling notebook, leaving a few lines beneath each. Then, he writes them under the ones I wrote. The point of my writing them is to show him an example of what they should look like. He is to put forth his best effort in writing the dictation sentences in his notebook.
So, here's how a typical week looks:
'New Teaching' concept(s)
3 Dictation Sentences
'New Teaching' concept
Possibly 1/3 of the words for the step
3 Dictation Sentences
Review of 'New Teaching' concepts from this step
1/3 or 1/2 of words
2 Dictations Sentences
Review 'New Teaching' concepts from this step
Last of words
2 Dictation Sentences
Review 'New Teaching" concepts from this step
Review Word Banks, Syllable Division Rules, and/or other previously taught concepts
Review a minimum of 10 randomly chosen words from previous steps and/of levels
Final 2 Dictation Sentences