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Monday, February 13, 2012


We have had a chance to review a whole bunch of school products this year.  Some of them have been used in place of our "normal" school and others, like See-N-Spell, we have been able to use to help enhance what we are already doing.

We got a hard copy of their Spelling and Vocabulary Quick Reference Guide to use.  As the preface of the book explains, "Writers frequently possess a larger verbal social language vocabulary than a written academic language vocabulary......These writers, often misspell or, to avoid misspelling, choose simpler words that do not clearly express their thoughts or develop their language skills."

Basically, you can think of the perfect word for whatever you are trying to say....but, then, can't remember how to spell it.

I am guilty of that....I will many times want to use a specific word....but, then I type it and it doesn't look write....I try it another way....still doesn't look write....don't feel like looking it I just switch to a simpler word.  Recently, I could not for the life of me figure out how to spell "occasionally".  I would go back and forth between one "c" and two "s's".....two "c's" and one "s".  Then just switched the word to "sometimes".

But, guess what is right on the "O" page of the See-N-Spell the adverb column?  Occasionally!  I could have also looked in the back of the book to the Commonly Misspelled Words section too.  This section has words like:  absence; beggar; misspelled; receive; and vengeance.

Could you go look up words in the dictionary?  Yes.....but sometimes that 3 inch thick book is intimidating.  Could you go look it up on the internet?  Yes....but sometimes things you don't want to see pops up in those kinds of searches.

See-N-Spell just gives a quick alternative to these.  At only 40 pages, it is not intimidating for even a struggling speller and there is a lot of white space on the page so it is not as visually chaotic as a dictionary page can be.

The guide is based on 300+ most common vocabulary words used in the English language.  It is broken down by letter and then on each page, it breaks them down by their part of speech, for example: Noun; Verb; Irregular Verb; Adjective, etc..  It also covers for letter "C"...cache and gives the definition and spelling for each.  It is designed for about Grade 4 through Adult.

I have to say, though, one of our favorite things about See-N-Spell was the free See-N-Read reading tool that came with the book. It sort of turned out to be the thing that we didn't even know we needed...but had been waiting for all of our lives!

A-girl has trouble keeping her spot when she has a lot of reading to do....which slows her down and, in her words, "Lots of times I end up reading the same sentence over and over because I gets lost on the page."  It has been getting worse with age, because the older she gets, there are less worsheets and more reading in her school work.  And, really, the reading will just continue to grow - because she will use Sonlight next year. (Those of you that homeschool know what I am saying about Sonlight!)

This has been a wonderful tool for her....her reading is done much more quickly and she seems to be retaining her information much better too.  We are having to read outloud to her much less too.  Even though she is in 6th grade, we knew something was going on with her reading....and she seemed to comprehend and be able to remember things better if we read to her while she doodled.  I think when she read to herself she was concentrating so hard on trying not to lose her spot that what she was reading sort of fell to the wayside.

There is even an eSee-N-Read tool to help with on-line reading.....I might check that one out....because I don't like to read on the computer....but since everything seems to be going to digital readers....I may have to try.

The story of how this product was developed is interesting, and there is a bunch of research on why their products work.  But I don't think you need to know any of that to appreciate how handy and quick and easy it is to use.

A-girl and I have been passing See-N-Spell back and forth between her school area and the computer because we are both using it.  Here's hoping we won't lose it in the shuffle one day.....we would both be sort of lost without it.  Who wants to go back to a bulky dictionary anyway?

See-N-Spell is available for $9.99 and you get a free See-N-Read reading tool.

Since this is a review, you can go take a look at what other TOS members thought of both See-N-Spell and See-N-Read. 

We recieved a copy of See-N-Spell for free in exchange for an honest review of this product.