Thursday, March 10, 2011

Spell Quizzer (Review)

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We’ve set aside our usual spelling curriculum over the past few weeks to try out the Spell Quizzer software. Spell Quizzer provides a way for drill and practice for most existing spelling programs. We’ve been using All About Spelling this year, which is set up a bit differently and doesn’t use weekly spelling lists, so it doesn’t coordinate well with Spell Quizzer, although most traditional spelling programs would.

To use Spell Quizzer, you (or your child) record the weeks’ spelling words, with a sentence if desired. The child can then open up the program, which reads the word and sentence aloud. The child types in the spelling word and receives immediate assessment as to whether the word is correct or not. The child is then given the opportunity to practice the missed words until they are all spelling correctly. I can see that this would be great for a child to master his or her spelling lists each week. It’s not much different from the parent quizzing the words, but it’s more fun for the child on the computer. Because the parent (or child) can record the lists, Spell Quizzer will work with almost any spelling program.

Multiple lists are also available for download at the Spell Quizzer site as well, including the entire Houghton Mifflin Spelling curriculum through fifth grade. Lists for Sequential Spelling (first and second grades) are also available, and I assume more lists will be added from that curriculum.

Word lists are also available for the National Spelling Bee. This would have been great for my oldest daughter when she was competing in our county bee several years ago.

Since I don’t have a spelling program to coordinate with, I started Emily out with the “frequently misspelled words” for fifth through eighth grades and US states. She zipped through those lists in a few days and begged for more! So I downloaded the Houghton Mifflin words and set her loose with those. She’s been quite enthusiastic about mastering the lists—and I’m enjoying the fact that she’s totally independent. No help from Mom needed!

As you can see from this screen shot, Spell Quizzer is simple to understand and use.

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This is what the child sees as the computer reads the spelling word and sentence aloud:

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SpellQuizzer has been a big hit at our house. Simple as it is, Emily loves it and has enjoyed the feeling of mastery as she is able to complete each spelling list perfectly. If the SpellQuizzer folk continue to add ready-to-use spelling lists, the program will be even better.

SpellQuizzer sells for $29.95. If you think this is something that would be helpful in your home, try it out free for 30 days first.

I received a free copy of the SpellQuizzer software in exchange for my honest review.

This is a MamaBzz review.

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