Combining AAR and AAS

My son used All About Reading 1 for Kindergarten last year and was very successful with it. This year we are doing AAR 2, and I want to add a Spelling curriculum as well. I know that All About Learning press suggests using All About Spelling 1 AFTER using All About Reading 1 since students often learn to read quicker than they learn to spell. However, I am concerned about my son getting confused when working on two different phonics rules each week (an “old” one in Spelling 1 and a “new” one in Reading 2.) I used different curriculum with my older daughter, so this is the first time I need to decide what to do about this. When I taught first grade in public school our spelling words always followed the phonics rule that we were learning in reading that week, and I always thought that was helpful to my students.

Does anyone have experience with using both AAR and AAS? Did you use two different levels or the same so that the rules were the same? Any advice? Thanks!!

Hi there @alimaree! We use the two programs and actually use them one at a time (i.e. AAR 1 for the first half of the year and then AAS 1 for the second half of the year). So I wonder if that might be an option for you? I feel that since AAR uses the tiles so much, they are learning spelling concepts as they move through the AAR curriculum, even if they aren’t working on spelling lists each week. My daughter did this for two levels of AAR and AAS and is half way through AAR 3 and her spelling capabilities are very high (she’s an avid reader though too). My son has also done this for AAR 1 and AAS 1 and now into AAR 2 and it has worked well for him too. :slight_smile: Just an idea if you don’t want to have the two programs working on different rules at the same time.


For students who have previously done AAR 1, the rules in AAS 1 would build on their knowledge from AAR 1, but with new deeper application–so usually it isn’t confusing to them. However, you can structure your days so that you don’t have new content covered in both programs on the same day:

Every other lesson in AAR has the student reading from the reader. You could wait until those days to introduce a new rule in AAS 1, so that your child isn’t getting a new rule in both programs on the same day. Work on review in spelling (such as reviewing the word cards, practicing with tiles, or writing one or two phrases from a previous dictation section) while your child is doing a new concept in reading, then work on a new concept in spelling while your child is doing review in reading (playing the activities additional times, working on a fluency page or reading a story in the readers.)

If you need to practice a spelling concept additional times, review the related key card and phonograms, show some examples with the letter tiles, and let your child practice using a variety of tactile and kinesthetic methods. Don’t be afraid to “camp out” on a concept for awhile if things seem to be moving quickly. The programs are both designed for you to move at your child’s pace, so you don’t have to accomplish a specific number of lessons in a certain time.