It's a handful of homemade cards each written in crayon on half an index card, a paper bag, and a cheap timer from the dollar store.
Know what it is?
Would you guess an awesome spelling game that Toa of Boy asked to play twice?
The game, called Rotten Egg, came from this book...
Which is a part of this Logic of English curriculum...
which is a combined spelling/grammar/handwriting program. Which we are loving!
(The nerf guns didn't come with the curriculum. We had to purchase those separately....but we are using them with the curriculum!)
If you're curious, the book is divided into 40 lessons, each with three parts. We generally do one lesson part a day. (Or at least that's the goal.)
The first part of each lesson introduces three new phonemes with all their sounds. Did you know "ea" is used to spell three sounds? There are some nice speech and sound exploration exercises. We spend a bit more time than other families might on the speech component, since there are still come sounds Toa struggles to produce clearly. The teacher guide has really neat tips on being aware of tongue placement in the mouth and what exactly the mouth is doing to form the different sounds. I know many parents might not need this info, but it's been gold for us!
Also included in the first section is the introduction of at least spelling rule....which I swear is NOT the same useless, more exceptions than regular spellings, type rules I remember from school! First, their is a section in the workbook of words that follow the rule. The student reads the words and tries to deduce what they might have in common. There are some teacher prompts to guide them through this process. THEN, after they have pretty much figured out the rule for themselves, then they are given the rule. The rule for the lesson we are currently working on says, "We often double F, L, and S after a single vowel at the end of a base word. Occasionally other letters are also doubled."
Now, at first, that seems not so useful. It doesn't have a catchy little rhyme for one thing. But, after having been LIED to all my life with 'rules' such as, "When two vowels go a-walking, the first one does the talking, and it says its name," I'll take honesty over inane jingles any day.
The second part of the lesson is the introduction of the 15 word spelling list. It's pretty sweet and straightforward. We like short and sweet. Each spelling word has a brief list of related vocabulary words which we read aloud, discuss, and sometimes act out. (Cliff, with cliffs and cliffhanger, was part of this lesson's list. You know those had to be acted out. It was practically a boy mandate.)
The third part of the lesson has grammar, dictation, and a brief composition exercise.
And of course, fun, fast past game options and other review options are included in each portion of each lesson.
That's it! No useless, repetitive worksheets. No mindless busy work.
Last week, we did a review and assessment over the first four lessons. That's 60 words. Want to know how many Toa marked for review? Four. And, get this, he *voluntarily* marked those four words for review. We didn't sit down and give him a 60 word spelling test. He might have ran away and joined the circus if I tried that. We just did a brief dictation exercise of 15 short two or three word phrases that very cleverly and sneakily happened to use almost every spelling word once. He had NO problems with the dictation exercise. The few misspellings he made as he was writing, he noticed on his own and self corrected. (Ok, with the exception of that sneaky 'ea' in 'clean'. That one needed pointed out to him.)
But, when presented with a list of the sixty spelling words, he was able to read the list and self-identify the words he had trouble with. How many 9 year olds are given the opportunity to do that?
Oh, and we practiced those 4 words the next day by laying side by side on our backs on the living room floor, crossing one leg over one knee so that one foot was suspended in the air and then sky-writing the word with our toes.
Check out what others are doing this week on Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers!