ST. LOUIS, MO, September 26, 2006 — Recent educational research suggests that the traditional method of teaching spelling through reading and rote memorization may not be the best approach. Rather, teaching students to recognize letter and word patterns empowers them to be independent readers.

According to J. Richard Gentry, author of The Science of Spelling, “[A] whole generation of children in America may have been disenfranchised from spelling instruction because authorities told teachers that children learn to spell by reading; consequently, many children grew up without spelling instruction.”

Orchard Software, published by Siboney Learning Group, met this change in spelling education with its latest program, Spelling Buzz. Students compete against each other or against Buzz the Bee in several spelling bee activities, earning points for spelling correctly. This flexible software program allows students to set the pace from easy to challenging, while teachers can import their own words or use the lessons provided.

“We’ve captured the excitement of a spelling bee and added superb graphics to help motivate students to learn spelling,” said William D. Edwards, President of Siboney Learning Group. “The features in Spelling Buzz get students and teachers alike excited about spelling.”

Students in kindergarten through 6th grade encounter words commonly found in basal series used by schools. Each lesson contains 10 words that share a letter or sound pattern or that relate to a subject area like science. Students learn to manipulate words and gain experience in components of words, such as roots, prefixes, and suffixes, as well as spelling patterns, such as word families.

Spelling Buzz is available as a single title through Siboney Learning Group’s Gamco product line or as part of a comprehensive solution through Orchard Software, which also provides standards-based assessments and automatic targeted assignments. With more than 150 Skill Trees covering over 3,000 concepts, Orchard’s assessments are designed to ensure that students are working on the specific skills they need to master in order to meet challenging academic standards as well as each school district’s learning objectives.

Siboney Learning Group is a dynamic publisher, integrator, and provider of comprehensive and motivational software. Its associates are passionate about the success of children and adult learners and are committed to playing a leading role in their education by providing high-quality software.

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