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The Thinking Tree Spelling Books

Learning how to spell doesn't have to be boring when you're using The Thinking Tree spelling books!

I know a lot of mamas are wondering when to use them. Of course, you can use them anytime because you know your child and what he or she can handle. And these are not "official" rules or anything - just suggestions.
The Thinking Tree Spelling Journals
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Keep in mind that younger children will need more help and go at a slower pace. Young children should only complete 1 page a day and mom helping with reading. Older kids like my Ethan should aim for 2-4 pages a day but as always, you set the pace for your child. You know him or her best!

1. Teach Your Child to Read, Write, and Spell: 100 Easy Bible Verses - if your child is using Dyslexia Series A 100 Easy Bible Verses is a great follow-up. Your child can also use it while completing Dyslexia Series A if he can handle it. You want to keep things fun and not overwhelm your child while he is completing Dyslexia Games.

2. Fun-Schooling Spelling Journal for ages 5+ (some little ones may need help) is for struggling beginners. Fun-Schooling Spelling Journal is best to wait until after the child has completed Series A. Because spelling is taught in a fun and non-stressful way you can have your child use this while completing Dyslexia Games B.
3. Spelling Time B: The Four Seasons -  is perfect for Dyslexia Game users whose child has completed Series B. As with all of The Thinking Tree spelling journals, Spelling Time B can be used right along with Dyslexia Games if it's not overwhelming for your child.
4. Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, & Draw - this one is great for children who struggle with sight words and what a fun way to learn using art, logic, and animals to learn how to spell those pesky but NOW fun sight words. This can be used right along with a child using Dyslexia Games Series A.

 5. Spelling Time - is for older students ages 10+ and teens. This book similar to the one in Dyslexia Games Level C. This one has some extra pages that the Dyslexia Games version does not have.

With the 1st three spelling journals, I really hesitate to put an age because children are so different.

I have a 13-year-old struggling speller working through Fun-School Spelling Journal and once done will use Spelling Time B and Spelling Time Master the Top 150 Misspelled Words.

Then I have another son age 11 completing 100 Easy Bible Lessons and 100 Words. He struggles with reading and spelling. But if I had to put an age on each book I'd say:
  • 100 Easy Bible Verses & Fun-Schooling Spelling Journals - ages can start between ages 5-8+. Just remember that learning should be fun and if a younger child only completes 1 page or half that's perfectly fine. Mom's it's okay to help and even work in their journal. Your child will LOVE that mom is using their "school" book =)
  • The Four Seasons Spelling Time (#3) and Teach Your Child 100 Words (#4) 8+ is a good age to start. Younger children can use this too because it's fun and enjoyable. Lot's of coloring and being creative. We just put an age on it because many mamas want to know 'what age'.
  • Spelling Time (#5) for ages 10+  
And guess what? The Thinking Tree will have more to come. This is just the beginning of your child learning to spell - the fun way!

Here is a Mom Tip by Sarah  regarding spelling (used with permission from Sarah Brown)

Don't worry about having children write before they are ready. The Thinking Tree spelling books are really good for children who are not ready for writing, they color the words and write the specific words and they also do a lot of drawing. As the books advance some of them give the child an opportunity to do creative writing. If your child is not ready for the writing the BEST BEST BEST thing to do is ask the child what YOU should write for him. When the child sees you writing it stirs something up in their minds and they begin to develop the ability and desire to write.

If I am writing a story for my child (think 3 sentences) and I arrive at a word that I know that they know, I would say "How do you spell cat?" they giggle and are happy to tell me how to spell. Next, I will stop writing when I get to a word that they can write, and just say "Your turn!" and hand them the pencil so they can add a simple word. One nice thing about this method is that the child will try to mimic your letter size and style. Another fun way to get a child writing is to have the child DRAW a small picture of the nouns in the sent.

If you do get to a place in any of the Thinking Tree Spelling books Or Dyslexia Games where the exercise is too advanced (For example the *spaghetti lady causes dread) I would be an example and say "You don't want to do the spaghetti lady? That's GREAT because I WANTED to do that one! Can I PLEASE do your spaghetti lady?"

This advice may go against everything you have learned from being in school yourself: If your child complains that something is too hard or too boring - DARE to do it yourself. Say "Oh really? Can I give it a try? It looks interesting to me!" But if it is super boring, agree with the child and give it a try, have fun. It's okay to say "You are right this is SOOOO boring. Let's have a snack, and turn on some music! Don't you think that music will make this more fun?" NOW, if the schoolwork is totally irrelevant, and you are unwilling to do that kind of work yourself, maybe you should pitch it. I know we worry about the money we spent on nice curriculum - so put it on the shelf and tell your children they can use those books to "Play School" with their friends or stuffed animals

*Spaghetti Lady is a page in Dyslexia Games - Series A.

Click HERE to see video reviews of the spelling journals mentioned.

100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw - Thinking Tree Spotlight Review & Link-Up!

This next book from The Thinking Tree was put together by Anna Brown (Sarah's daughter)!
Teach Your Child 100 Words to Spell, Write, Read, and Draw Review!
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Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw is a cute book of words that every child should master by age 10! If your child is using Dyslexia Games Series A and/or Teach Your Child to Read, Write, and Spell: 100 Easy Bible Verses, this little gem of a spelling and reading book (among art and writing) is a perfect follow-up to that.

100 Words To Read, Write, Spell, & Draw is also perfect to use with beginning readers, struggling readers, struggling spellers, and children with dyslexia. 100 Words uses the Dyslexic Font.

This book teaches the 100 most common words through cute poems about animals. Your child will learn how to read and spell words like: are, blue, clouds, house, eight, eat, snow, snack, wild, and more in a fun way. Kids might not even consider it as school learning because the book is not only fun but is smaller than your average workbook making it different from other schoolbooks.

 The first animal your child will meet is a grey squirrel. For beginning or struggling readers it's suggested that you read the poem four times, pointing to each word as you read it. When you get to the 3rd and 4th reading, have your child read along with you.
The next set of Grey Squirrel pages has mom read the poem again. The child can read it again as well if he likes. Once done reading have your little one point and say each word and color the word in. I have Lance say each letter as he colors them in, "Y-O-U, you".  And your child gets a little science too with -drawing the squirrel's habitat!
The next Grey Squirrel pages has your child fill in the blank.
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
Another idea with using this book is to have your child memorize the poems and have some read aloud books on hand about squirrels.
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
The next animal is a zebra!
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw

Platypus pages. This animal would be fun to research more.
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
All these animals can be found and researched using the show Wild Kratts too!
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
Watch the Platypus video on Wild Kratts.
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
 In the back of the book are some Fun-Schooling Practice Time Pages.
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
Some words like kangaroo and raccoon may be hard to fit in the spaces for some kiddos. Make it fun and challenge the child to write small but also let them know that it's okay if the word goes into the next box. This is their book and it's absolutely okay because they are unique and so is the book they are creating here!
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
With the pages shown below your child can write short sentences or a story like, "See the shark has sharp teeth" or make shark plural and talk about adding the "s". The child can write, "See the sharks sharp teeth?"
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
Have fun with it. Depending your child's age see how many words your child can use in one sentence, can he use most of the words on one page to write a short story?!?!
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
Your child can draw and write, create their own little stories and poems making their own little book!
The Thinking Tree Teach Your Child 100 Words to Read, Write, Spell, and Draw
Wow, for a little book it's packed with a lot of learning. Your child will use art, logic, and animals to learn how to spell - all in a fun and enjoyable way.

Right now I'm having Lance use this book - some words are review but others like eight and please he still needs to learn. So we are using it as a fun way to review words and sneak some of the ones he hasn't mastered in his homeschool day.
The Thinking Tree
About the author: Anna Brown
Anna is 15, the oldest girl in a family of 10! She loves art, music, animals, nature, sister-time, babysitting, baking, and serving as a missionary in Ukraine. She has a baking ministry here.

Anna has Dyslexia and learned to read when she was nine after being the first child to use Dyslexia Games.
Anna majored in art from age 5 to 9 because she was unable to read and write. She has contributed artwork to the following books:

A Day Like Tomorrow
Teach Yourself to Draw: Puppies, Playful Pets, and Forest Animals
To Wear or Not to Wear
Dyslexia Games Series B
Teach Yourself to Read, Write, and Spell 100 Words.

Having dyslexia allows Ann to think in 3D and helps her to have a big imagination. Though reading and writing sometimes makes her tired after a few chapters, she loves books, and she loves creative writing.

Her latest book is full of cute little poems about animals to help children learn to read, write, and spell. Anna enjoys creating books for other kids with dyslexia and learning challenges. Her books are so much fun that they are becoming popular with homeschoolers in general, not just dyslexics.

Take a peek inside!

Here are some of the books that Anna has helped with!


Do you have a Thinking Tree review or post that you'd like to share? If so please link up. You can read the official rules and come back, grab the graphic below to add to your Thinking Tree post, and link-up!
Please don't forget to link back, thank you and have fun reading and commenting on other Thinking Tree post!

Wordless Wednesday

Wordless Wednesday at Homeschooling6 - Annette practicing her photography!

When He Runs Off

My son Lance can become overwhelmed and frustrated very easily. If Joshua's Jars of Clay or Praise & Worship music is too loud Lance curls up in a ball on his chair.

If he doesn't understand something in his schoolwork like why is it that way he may run screaming. If he's asking a question but I don't understand what he's asking, the list goes on. Let me just say it's an adventure schooling him.

At first I use to get frustrated myself. My tone would not be so kind. I prayed and asked God to help me and of course being kind to Lance even when he's in a harry mood is what I felt the Lord say.

So when he would get in his "Lance" mood I'd sit calmly and try to explain things a different way. I'd rub his back as I spoke to him.

Now when he runs off I let him go. I have found that if I just give him some time and space he will come back as if nothing has happened.

Lately I've been finding him in my room.
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With his school work! In this picture he was reading all the 100 Words in the front of his new spelling book that Sarah Janisse Brown sent (my next spotlight in review coming tomorrow).

When I peeked in on him he looked up and smiled at me then continued reading.