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The Old Schoolhouse® Product & Curriculum Reviews

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Spelling Memorizer Review by Dr. Anne Margaret Wright

Bornstein School of Memory Training
11693 San Vicente Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90049
1-888-711-1215
http://www.memorydynamics.com/

Let's face it - with today's word processing and spelling checkers many of us have lost our spelling skills! Why worry about how to spell a word, when the handy little spelling checker will look it up and fix it for you? Now, of course, sometimes that leads to some interesting and even embarrassing errors! If you want your kids to become first-rate spellers, or even to compete in spelling bees, there is a great teaching aid available. The Spelling Memorizer, from the Bornstein School of Memory Training, utilizes great memory aids to help students learn 56 frequently misspelled words.

The set includes 56 large 8½" x 11" illustrated flash cards, and a great 24 page instructional guide that explains the process and offers many tips for improving your spelling skills. There is also an audiotape by the creator of this innovative method, Arthur Bornstein, which covers all of the different techniques used and makes many good suggestions for using the program.

Many homeschoolers have a love/hate relationship with flashcards because they do tend to work, but are often boring! But these are flashcards that kids will actually want to study. They are large, bright, and have clever illustrations that work. The program utilizes several different memory techniques to help kids remember the trouble spots in difficult words. For example, for the word "separate" the common trouble spot is the middle vowel which is often misspelled with an "e" instead of an "a". The flashcard for "separate" shows the word, with the middle "a" written as a very large lightening bolt to emphasize the correct letter. Another tough word "committee" shows a group of five men sitting around a table. The first two men have the letters "co" and "mm" respectively on their pink shirts. The middle man has an "i" on his yellow shirt. Then the last two men have "tt" and "ee" respectively on their pink shirts. The trouble spot in this word is how many "m's," "t's," and "e's" to use. By remembering that everyone with a pink shirt had two letters, it is easy to remember the correct spelling. Each of the cards has more information on the back to help reinforce the spelling concepts. I'll admit that I'm a sucker for innovative products that make learning (and teaching) fun and effective. Maybe that's why I like this set so much! My only complaint is that there needs to be a second set, and a third set, and . . .



-- Product Review by: Dr. Anne Margaret Wright, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine

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