My Dictionary and My Thesaurus

 My Dictionary and My Thesaurus

Word spelling books designed to improve the literacy skills of 6-8 year old children

MY DICTIONARY was first developed in New Zealand in the late 1980’s by two teachers who requested for a local printer to prepare 80 copies for their students. From this modest beginning, we have now printed over 1,000,000 copies sold around the world in the United Kingdom, United States of America, Canada, Australia, Ireland, Malaysia, Taiwan, Singapore, Pacific Islands, Oman, Spain and Qatar.

The company is led by Jenny and Tony Aston and many other partners and promoters throughout the world. Our partners have good understanding of the schools in their countries and areas as well as the needs of their teachers and students.

Sunshine Books International Limited is known for producing high-quality and low-cost resources for primary-grade classrooms. Our company encourages suggestions and comments from teachers who use the books in their classrooms. All feedback is a welcome means for keeping our books current and relevant.

For Parents –  My Dictionary and My Thesaurus

Recent research shows that vocabulary growth is largely determined by parental practices, particularly before the age of 7. (Biemiller, 2003)

Children mainly use words their parents and other adults use with them in conversations, and acquire larger vocabularies when their parents use more words. (Hant and Risley, 1995)

Let’s get our children word-confident!

How can we, as parents help improve children’s vocabulary?

Every child has different interests and strengths. Some children respond better to word games, whilst others are just as happy making most of the vocabulary books. Some children remember quicker with visual aids such as flashcards and word applications whilst other children just love being imaginative and want to use the words in their creative stories.

To help our children get more interested in building their vocabulary power, let us try a few tips and apply them to our activities and plays.

Use or make Flashcards – Use the existing ones or create your own flashcards with your children and talk to them about how the words are associated with the drawings or symbols in the flashcards. Why don’t we start with the words in My Dictionary and My Thesaurus!

Make use of the Key Words – Select the key words from My Dictionary and My Thesaurus and think of other words that are associated with the key words and expand!

Out and About – Take the children out and show them what the words mean in real life!

Repeat and Repeat – Repeat use of the new words in many different contexts in the daily conversations.

Exposure!!! – Get your children exposed to the world of vocabularies! Make use of multimedia (maybe dictionaries, word books, flashcards, CDs, DVDs, mobile applications, etc.). Expose the new words daily and get your children interested.

Revise the new words learnt from school at home to make the journey of learning vocabulary complete!

Hexco Spelling eMentor

Outstanding Word Lists Paired with the Perfect Spelling Mastery Tool! Try Spelling eMentor today!

Spelling eMentor  by Hexco Academic is a state-of-the-art online methodical word mastery program that comes with hundreds to thousands of words per product.

Over 20 National Spelling Bee champions in a row have used Hexco products, and each unique spelling product includes time-tested word lists, ideal for homeschool spelling. Along with quality word lists which contain phonetic pronunciations (so students can ‘sound out’ words), spelling eMentors include audio pronunciations, abbreviated definitions, part(s) of speech, and etymology. Spelling eMentor also provides the built-in capability to save all missed words so students can eventually get every word right!

Spelling eMentor by Hexco can save parents countless hours of drilling and can speed up learning.

Benefits of Spelling eMentor by Hexco Academic

  • No more looking up words to create challenging, yet grade-appropriate curriculum
  • Tracks missed words like a proficient teacher or parent
  • Each product is grouped into manageable study lists of 50-150 words
  • Audio recordings by articulate speakers
  • Excellent for SAT study and most lists are primarily “good, vocabulary enriching” words
  • Options for all grade levels, from grades 1-12, including very advanced students who need more of a challenge

Read what 2017 National Spelling Bee Champion, Ananya Vinay said about Spelling eMentor:

“I got to use the eMentors as part of the PSC (Personal Spelling Coaching). They were one of the most helpful items to study … It really improved my variety of word knowledge throughout the past year. Another thing I really liked about the eMentors was that it was easy to efficiently study by starring your doubts and reviewing your mistakes. They also had a lot of tricky words that I learned as I did the eMentors. They were very beneficial to my learning.”

Which spelling product(s) is/are best for my child?

For homeschool spelling curriculum, we recommend a foundation of 10,000 words. For a child in kindergarten through the first or third grade, we recommend starting with the Spell Buddy word lists which contain a total of 8,000 words and challenges students up to the eighth-grade level. For children in the third grade and beyond, or for more advanced spellers, use the list of options below, presented in increasing levels of difficulty.

Beginner to Intermediate

Intermediate to Advanced

Blitz List or Blitz eMentor – 3,000 words per volume (popular for National Spelling Bee preparation, and for very advanced high school homeschool students who are looking for a challenge.) This list contains some of the most difficult words in the English language!

More about Hexco products and company

Watch this YouTube video showing how Hexco’s Spelling eMentor works and sign up for Hexco’s free demo to gain immediate access to our eMentor samples. Also recommended: Spelling Rules Book for teaching all ages the ‘rules’ for words of various origins, like French, German, Yiddish, Chinese, Hawaiian, Japanese, Italian, and many more!

As a 35+ year publishing company, Hexco Academic also offers personal spelling coaching and small classes by Skype for young spellers up to serious National Spelling Bee competitors. Personal spelling quizzing can also be purchased by the hour.

main – 830-367-3825
toll free – 1-800-PAJAMAS (you’ll never forget it!)

Spelling You See

Spelling You See is a research-based, developmental approach that uses five essential activities presented through short daily lessons to help students commit the correct spellings of words to longterm memory, thereby becoming confident spellers.

Spelling You See’s carefully designed approach empowers instructors (parents, teachers, and tutors) to help students develop skill and confidence in spelling through an effective, engaging, low-stress learning experience. Developing confidence in spelling skills contributes to developing effective written communication skills, which are important for success in higher education and adult life. Also, this successful approach can foster a student’s lifelong love of learning that transfers to all subject areas. Spelling You See’s consistent format guides students through the five essential activities (listening, reading, chunking, copywork, and dictation), presented at the appropriate developmental stage. These activities help students transfer the correct spellings of common words they see in print to long-term memory, enabling them eventually to be able to reproduce the correct spellings in their everyday writing.

Lessons are limited to short daily sessions to keep interest and enthusiasm high. There are no word lists to memorize and no weekly tests. Spelling You See is a program based on years of research into how students learn to spell. Students become effective communicators as they grasp the proper spelling of words in the English language.

Reading Kingdom

Online program that teaches reading, writing & comprehension
The first reading programs that use the “Phonics-PLUS” instruction system.
Reading Kingdom – 30 Day Free Trial – Click here to sign up

“Reading Kingdom has transformed the teaching of reading … Central to the program’s success is: 1) its steady integration of spoken and written language, and 2) its unique incorporation of “immediate interactive feedback.” Research has shown that this type of feedback is critically important to engaging the student and thereby to enhancing effective learning. It regularly provides an immediate response to what the student does, and it offers clear, simple direction to overcome any errors that occur.”
— Dr. Bradley Peterson, Director, Institute for the Developing Mind, USC“All three of my children report that they ‘love Reading Kingdom because it is a lot of fun.’ In fact, with adorable animal characters and engaging activities, they often don’t even realize that it’s a learning program. They consider it to be a fun game that they are ‘playing’. And since it is a customized program it is adaptable to their particular needs. As a mom and an educator, I feel a great sense of pride observing my children actively engaged in this program as I watch their confidence soar when they “master” a skill…In my opinion, what makes Reading Kingdom an exceptional program for use with my children is that it expands on the traditional phonics method to teach words that cannot be sounded out phonemically (the majority of words in the English language). In fact, my six year old son has wisely questioned me in the past asking, “Why can’t I sound out so many of the words in my book…that doesn’t make sense?” With Reading Kingdom…..learning to read finally “makes sense” to him.” –Maureen Ruble, homeschooler

“The Reading Kingdom is the answer to my prayers. As a homeschooler, I was desperate and determined to find materials to help my son read and comprehend better. Dr. Blank’s methods proved to be just what I was looking for. Everything she offers worked and was so easy to do! In very little time my son became a strong confident reader.”
— Colleen Dillon, homeschooler

Reading Kingdom – 30 Day Free Trial – Click here to sign up

Reading Kingdom teaches students to read and write with comprehension at a 3rd grade level (Lexile 750). It is the program that we recommend for mainstream students. Reading Kingdom’s innovative techniques are extremely effective because they are based on a new “Phonics-PLUS” six skill model of reading instruction and do not rely solely on phonics-based decoding instruction which is problematic because most words in English cannot be sounded out.
Here is a video overview of the program.
• Read more testimonials here.

Reading Kingdom – 30 Day Free Trial – Click here to sign up

Key Benefits:
• The only program that uses the “phonics plus” Six Skill Integrated Method based on 40+ years of research by Dr. Marion Blank from Columbia University
• Program is adaptive and is personalized for each student
• Teaches students to read and write with comprehension at a 3rd grade reading level in only 12-18 months
• Works on any device with an Internet connection (including Windows, Mac, iPad, Android, Chromebooks, etc.)
• The program includes versions for ELL students and students 11+.
ASD Reading is a groundbreaking online reading & writing program
for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
ASD Reading – 30 Day Free Trial – Click here to sign up

“Dr. Blank has been a pioneer in developing effective reading programs for children with a variety of disabilities including autism.”
— Dr. Suzanne Goh, MD, Harvard University


“ASD Reading has transformed our relationship with our daughter, Kate. Its reading and writing programs helped her develop critical communication and problem solving skills. Now Kate reads and spells at or above grade level and we can ‘talk’ with her about her interests and feelings via writing. It has allowed us to recognize her true potential.”
— Andrew Walling, parent

ASD Reading is a patented, research-based method for teaching students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other significant learning disabilities to read, write and comprehend at a 3rd grade level (Lexile 750). Current reading education relies on methods that do not work for students on the spectrum with the result that the majority never gain the ability to read with fluency or understanding. However, the innovative content and methods of ASD Reading enable students to achieve success – even when they are non-verbal (i.e., non-speaking).

ASD Reading – 30 Day Free Trial – Click here to sign up

• You can find some information and videos about the autism program Dr. Blank created at Columbia University here.
• You can find a number of articles relating to Dr. Blank’s research on teaching students with Autism here.
• Read more testimonials here.

Reading is the gateway skill that opens the door to all learning. But current reading education relies on methods that do not work for children on the spectrum with the result that the majority never gain the ability to read with fluency or understanding. However, the innovative content and methods of ASD Reading enable children to achieve success – even when they are non- verbal (i.e., non-speaking).

ASD Reading offers unique instruction methods not found in other programs:
• Research based and incredibly effective.
• It provides adaptive instruction.
• Works with Win, Mac, iPad, Android, & Chromebooks.
• Almost all children can use the program – even those who are non-verbal.
• Teaches students to read & write with comprehension at a 3rd grade level in only 12-18 months.

ASD Reading – 30 Day Free Trial – Click here to sign up