In most cases, yes. Some modifications may be needed in some cases, depending on how old your materials are, but generally the flash cards and other supplements can be used with any edition. Here are some details about when it will be helpful to get updated versions.
All Essentials books from 2015 and newer are compatible with each other.
We did a major expansion and update of Essentials starting in 2015 with the 2nd edition.
- All books from the 2nd edition and later versions of Essentials are compatible with each other. For example, the Essentials Volume 1 Teacher's Guide and Workbook, which contain lessons 1-15, can be used interchangeably with the Essentials 1-7 and 8-15 Teacher's Guides and Workbooks, which split these same lessons into multiple books.
Essentials 1st edition (2012) books and later edition books are not compatible with each other. If have the First Edition of Essentials and would like to switch to a newer edition, you will need the following:
- Essentials Student Workbooks and Essentials Teacher's Guides from the 2nd edition (2015) or later. Essentials 1st edition Teacher's Manuals and Workbooks are not compatible with these newer editions.
- Spelling Analysis Card; Morpheme Flash Cards. These products were released with the 2nd edition of Essentials.
Some supplements are now in a more recent version, with some changes that provide clarification or new information. It is still possible to use the earlier products, simply adding the new concepts to your cards as you encounter them, but you may find it worthwhile to update. These include:
- Grammar Flash Cards: These went through a major update in 2018, adding many new concepts taught in the second half of Essentials. We recommend updating to the new set (3rd edition) if you are teaching a newer version of Essentials.
- Phonogram and Spelling Rule Quick Reference: This was updated in March of 2014 and again in the summer of 2018. Those who purchased older copies may find it worthwhile to order an updated version, but it is also possible to use the older one.
- Advanced Phonogram Flash Cards: We added 13 new advanced phonograms to this set in 2015, and two more in 2018. Since students doing level C of Essentials (the most advanced level of spelling and vocabulary instruction) learn all of the advanced phonograms, those teaching level C will likely want one of the newer sets, especially if you purchased yours before 2015. You can also use index cards to add the new phonograms to your existing set as you come to them in the lessons.
Update optional/likely not needed:
These materials do include minor updates that reflect changes we have made, but they are not necessarily significant enough that you should purchase the new versions.
- Basic Phonogram Flash Cards: We added a fifth sound of OU to this set in 2016, and a new phonogram, ES (plural noun and third person verb suffix), in 2018. Since the lessons specifically note that ES is a newly added phonogram and include an activity in which students cut a new flash card out of their workbooks, and since the fifth sound of OU can be added to the back of your existing card, you may find you do not need to order a new set.
- Phonogram Game Tiles and Phonogram Game Cards: These were updated in the summer of 2018 to add the new phonogram ES (plural and third person verb suffix), which is introduced as a new phonogram in Lesson 21. Since we will be teaching this phonogram from now on, we are adding it to all our materials, but those with older sets of these supplements will not necessarily need to upgrade to the new ones. Students were already using this suffix before we taught it as its own phonogram, so they will already have some familiarity with its sounds.
- Spelling Journal: This was updated in April 2014 to include hints and rules for where different spellings may be used, and in April 2018 to include new sections for schwa and other tricky words of students' choosing. The older editions will still work fine with Essentials lessons, so updating this supplement is optional.
- Spelling Rule Flash Cards: These now include Rule 31.1, 31.2, and 31.3, about schwa (added in 2015), and an updated and expanded Rule 7, about where I and Y may say long /ē/ (added in 2018). You can add these rules to your existing set with index cards unless you would prefer to purchase a new set.