Sing, Spell, Read and Write is a curriculum that I had the joy of being introduced to in the very beginning of our homeschooling adventure. Now, I am in the trenches of this program with my second child. This child learns 100% differently than my first and I am beaming at his success with reading and writing.
What type of program is this and how is it set apart from the others? Let me explain. Sing, Spell, Read and Write (SSRW) is a multi-sensory, song-singing, game-playing, colorful and very creative program. The curriculum focuses on the language as a whole while making learning exiting and fun. SSRW covers:
The teacher’s manual details how each lesson should go and gives an estimate of how much time should be dedicated to that lesson. The author, Sue Dickson, has systematically laid out the various objectives for each lesson. Some of the lessons may take two days, others may take up to nine days.
The kindergarten curriculum is based on a train track. Each lesson is a section of the track and at the end the child will have completed the curriculum and is on his/her way to reading and writing!
I love the colorful books that are included in this set and the fun ways that the author teaches the child how to form the letters. There are two books in the kindergarten curriculum along with fun songs that teach short vowels, sounding out words and many other phonetic rules.
The first grade curriculum is a racetrack. As the introduction song goes,
“I’m going 36 miles so I can learn how to read, 36 lessons are just what I need, 36 spots to read, write and spell. So everyone rejoice I’ll soon be reading so well!”
My children run madly around in a circle pretending to be race cars each time this song comes on. Thankfully, the next song that goes through each letter sound a-z calms them back down! There are two books in the first grade curriculum as well.
I truly believe this is one of the most thorough and enriching ways to learn to read, write and spell. The first book has each letter broken up into four pages. For example, learning letter “c”, the child would color a cat, next page practice both lower and uppercase c, then there is a cut and paste page where they need to decipher whether or not that picture begins with the “c” sound and finally, a dot to dot.
The first book takes around a month to complete, while the second book, will take much longer. I am thankful that this is not a quick program. When my first child completed step 36, I was a few days away from having our fourth child and I could have cried. We had been diligently working for the past 10 months and had covered everything from the short vowel sounds, long vowels, silent k, l, g, g, h to reading comprehension and everything in between.
My son finished the racetrack a very confident reader, speller, and writer. He took his confidence to the library checking out more books than I can count and reading them to himself any opportunity he had.
My second son, is on step 12 as I write this. He is a very kinesthetic learner. He is a very independent child and loves going ahead on his own (which is very possible with mom close by, of course!). The songs grab his attention while the workbook pages change up the rhythm of the lessons so that your child will not become bored. Each lesson is followed up by a game that has a Bingo or a Go Fish theme to it.
My son who cannot sit still long is reading! Oh yes and not only is he reading but enjoys reading. He is comprehending what is read!
The program contains:
- 17 story books
- CD and 6 sing along tapes (do people still use cassettes?)
- a raceway track
- cars for the track
- five games
- a treasure chest of prizes and four books
- an assessment book
In summary: Honestly, I cannot say enough good things about this curriculum. The curriculum is an investment at around $254.00- $306.00. This, however, includes both the kindergarten and first grade programs. You may reuse the resources for each subsequent child after and are able to purchase just the workbooks online for around $9-$14. After seeing how successful my children are learning and have learned to read and write I would pay this amount over and over again. I know others who have followed this program would state the same!
Finally, you can view the materials at Christian Book. Happy reading!
We loved this program for K. But went to a stronger program for 1st grade and well did not do well with sticking to it. We will go back to the program and go during the summer to make it up. Now I did have a question we have almost the same age kids. 7, 4 and 1. Have you heard anything about the 2nd and 3rd levels yet? We love the program but would like to to move on threw the other grades. Do you have any suggestions?
We have done both the K and 1st grade program and like I said in my review, we have loved it! I felt the 1st grade program was very thorough and definitely recommend going through it! I have not heard too much on the 2nd and 3rd grade levels. The couple of comments that I have heard, not experienced, is that it isn’t quite what the expected it to be especially after going through the K and 1st grade programs. Does this help? Let me know if you have any other questions. We switched to Learning Language Arts Through Literature after 1st grade SSRW and have been very happy with that program as well!
Christine Calabrese says
If you have kids that are this young, I’d go with SSR&W, while your singing the songs you’ll find your younger ones will pick up quickly. Be sure you have the letters in front of the kids while they sing so they associate the letters with the sounds. As for the 2nd grade and 3rd grade SSR&W, they are a geography study of the U.S. AND grammar, reading, writing and spelling. I would add another writing program to this program, take a look at Excellence in Writing, a great tool to teach kids how to write, really write! I also like the ABEKA program for little ones, once they have learned to read with SSR&W, their math is great and I think they have a really well-rounded curriculum. Course, there is nothing like teaching your kids to read with SSR&W, be sure you do all the SPELLING, it’s important. Once you have one kid who has gone through the program you have the older kid, test the younger in the spelling. Oral spelling tests and daily written spelling are a must. Wait until your child reaches about Step 9 then start with written spelling tests, 5 a day, begin with the short a words Step 5…. Just go straight down the list. This is so important. Any other questions you can just email me at [email protected] – Happy Homeschooling! 🙂
I am thinking about using SSRW for 1st grade next year. . Is it a program that we can jump into without doing the kindergarten? We are doing My Fathers World now. And do I have to add in other subjects such as science?
I used SSRW(the box that has kinder and level 1)…I acutally skipped a bunch of the kindergarten stuff because she started kinder already knowing her letters and the sounds that they make…we skipped the first workbook and went on to the second one that the kinder readers are used in …and then, started the level 1. she is finished kindergarten and we are almost finished the level 1 curriculum…she is a very strong reader and can already read chapter books. I ordered SSRW for Level 2 to use for 1st grade so I’m interested to see how it is. I wanted the geography covered in level 2 as I live overseas and want to get a start on 50 states geography for my amercian daughter. I plan on combining SSRW with First Language Lessons and Writing with Ease as needed to make sure that she is getting all that she needs.
One thing I really noticed with this program is that the teacher’s guide is actually helpful. ha! every other teacher guide i have gotten thus far has been completely useless….but the teacher guides with SSRW actually have “extras”…like creative writing lessons, grammar lessons, etc…that are not in the student workbooks!
I’m currently using SSRW G1 for my son who is Jap/American. Most of the time he speaks Japanese. Well, we absolutely love this program but, when I think about using this for G2 and 3, it will be too much money to spend. I wonder what is the best LA curriculum after SSRW G1? Do you have any suggestions for slower speed and well explained one?
Debra Tanner says
Can you just get the kindergarten kit without the Grade 1 in there? That is what I am needing.
Hi Amanda, I just received my kit for K-1 grade and I am little confused at just how to start. Do you know of anyone I could call and speak with to get some pointers?
Christine Calabrese says
Start with the Kindergarten program and go through it then the Grade 1 program that’s all.
Sherry Dinsmoor says
I am a teacher and am trying to find K-1 through K-6 Phonetic StoryBook Readers. Can anyone tell me where shop?