Spelling Workout

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Becky Peterson

  • Reviewed on Tuesday, October 28, 2014
  • Grades Used: K-6
  • Dates used: 2009-2014
I have been using Spelling Workout every year since 2009.

Pros: Each lesson concentrates on a phonetic rule (digraphs, i before e). Takes about 3-4 days per week, about 10-15 minutes per day. Kids can do this independently.

Cons: Naturally good spellers can mow through this. Others miss a lot of words if they just do the exercises in the book. We dropped this for 2 yrs and tried Rod & Staff for my middle child, then tried All About Spelling, and now we are back to Spelling Workout (but supplementing spelling games and lots of writing practice of the words).

I don't consider this busy work. Spelling is daily, repetitive, and can get boring like math. But in that practice, rules are memorized and spelling can be mastered. No grown up thinks of the word 'tale' and then mentally lists all the ways to spell long 'a.' We simply spell the right word that we memorized, whether it's the tale you tell, or the tail on a cat.

My younger kids have trouble spelling, so we spend 15 minutes per day on Spelling Workout:

M: read the words, do exercise 1, write them all on a piece of paper.
T: read the words, exercise 2-3
W: write all the words once and again trying from memory. Practice saying and memorizing in syllables.
R: Quiz on all words (missed words are written two times), finish lesson. Do activity if desired. Play a game with letter tiles
F: Study, and take a spelling test. Everyone gets candy!

This works for us. Happy Spelling!


  • Reviewed on Friday, May 25, 2012
  • Grades Used: K-4
  • Dates used: 2011-2014
We used SW for a few years and for the kid who was a natural speller, it was fine. It was busy work, but it was fine.
For the kid who wasn't a natural speller, it was a disaster. We added in more hands on stuff, I tried to do as much as I could to help him catch on to the spelling words, but overall the program just didn't cut it.

We switched out of SW completely this year. I won't be using it again in the future.


  • Reviewed on Saturday, May 28, 2011
  • Grades Used: 1st, 2nd
  • Dates used: 2009-2010
My son struggled with spelling and at first found these very tedious and boring. Now I am finding them useful for supplementing AAS, which really helped us. I plan to use some of the lessons as refresher course over the summer. Like the other reviewers, I tried Spelling Workout on recommendation of Well-Trained Mind and found they didn't do the job.


  • Reviewed on Friday, October 2, 2009
  • Grades Used: 1st and 2nd
  • Dates used: 2009
I bought this book on the recommendation of some other homeschoolers that I know. I wasn't too excited about it when I first got the book, but I figured that we could use while I look for something else. As time has gone on, I've grown to like it less and less.
Each section contains works that have something in common, perhaps the way their long e is built. A little blurb tells the student what the relationship is, but that is as far as the program goes to building an understanding of phonics and consequently how to build words in English. I've reviewed these rules with my kids and they haven't understood them because the program doesn't make them practice them. The worksheets all have the words in a list directly on them, so the child simply has to copy the word instead of exercise his/her spelling abilities.
This program is busy work, not really what I had in mind when I went searching for a spelling curriculum. The kids really like to do the worksheets, but they aren't learning how to spell from them.