27 October 2008 09:32 AM

S-P-E-L-L-I-N-G Is Important (Part 2)

by Dr. Rick

Continuing where I left off last week, this second group of tips is for School Times, when your kids are studying for their weekly spelling quizzes or preparing written assignments.


School Times: Be involved in your child’s studying.


  1. Make big tasks small. Banish the fear of the weekly spelling quiz by breaking down the weekly spelling list to a few words a night. Small tasks are so much easier than big ones.
  2. Write each word with your child. Let her see you learning the words, too. Have her concentrate on the movement of her hands with each word. This will help her later, when she’s writing the word in class.
  3. Pronounce each word with her. Use the word in conversation, so the word becomes a part of her working vocabulary.
  4. Make your own practice quiz. Practice, we all know, makes perfect. So why not have a practice quiz during the week? How many letters are in "chair?" What’s the first letter of "pneumonia?" What’s the last letter in "civil?" How many syllables are in "arithmetic?" What does “v-o-i-c-e” spell?
  5. Turn the tables. Have him quiz you. It’ll be fun and give him some opportunities to think about the words.
  6. Create a Word Wall. Fill a wall (or the front of the refrigerator) with words your child has mastered and/or with words he has trouble with. Put the mastered words on blue index cards, the troubling words on white. It’s fun when he can move the white words to blue. Praise him as the word wall fills up.
  7. Movement helps. Movement is a common learning style, and many of us learn best if we can move as we learn. Try spelling the words to rhythm and clap along.  Jump rope to the spelling. 
  8. Make flash cards with your child. Let her make some, you make some. Put the definitions and a sentence or two on the back of the cards. Quiz each other.  Make a game out of it. Games are easier to face than quizzes.
  9. Keep a list of difficult words. Go back and review them from time to time.  Come up with interesting ways to remember the spellings.

Have interesting, fun techniques you’d like to share? I’d love to hear. I’m one of those “word nerds” who can’t get enough of this stuff!

For the original part of this post, click here.




11/1/2008 10:35:29 AM

Sadlier-Oxford.com (publisher of the Vocabulary Workshop books) has a graphic organizer called a word square.  They divide the square into four parts: word, my connection, what it means, and how it looks.  Our kids that are more visual learners have had a lot of success using these for learning both spelling and vocabulary words.  

Heather Elyse

12/22/2009 2:11:22 PM

Nice to see a blog post with no fluff.  I like that.  I'll have to come back and read more.

Carlo Murany

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