SPELLING WORKS

Spelling is such a necessary but unliked subject for both students and teachers.  I have pulled away from the traditional way of teaching spelling and moved into a more student friendly technique.  Each week I introduce a new theme for our list of spelling words often times this list coordinates with the phonics lessons for the week.  The students help brainstorm words for the list.  Then they choose 15 words for that list that are just right for them.  I have found that by letting the students choose their own words they feel more responsible and motivated to learn and understand those words.  It is also very beneficial for the variety of spelling intelligences that are in my classroom.  The students have a week to study their words then take a buddy test at the end of the week with their partner.

 


 

 


 

Look Cover Say

Look Cover Say Worksheet
Pencil
Spelling Card
Flip folder

Write your spelling words down the first column of the worksheet.  Double check to make sure your words are spelled correctly.  Start on your first word, say the word aloud, look at it noticing anything important about the word, cover the word with the flap, say the word again, write it in the next column, and check if you were correct.  If you were correct, great, if not dont fix it.  Do the same for each word three times.

 

Report It

Lined paper
Pencil
Spelling List

Read your spelling list.  Think about how these words could be used to report an event.  It could be an imaginary or real event.  Write the words who, what, when, where, why, and how on the left side of your paper.  Leave two or three lines between each word.  Beginning with who, use one or more of your spelling words in a sentence to describe who is involved in the event.  Underline each spelling word in the description.  Think about the next word, what, and write a phrase describing what happened in the event.  Continue with when, where, why, and how.  You must use each spelling word at least once.  Use all this information to write a short article describing the event.  Have someone edit your article.  Underline all of the spelling words that were used.

 

Rhyming Couplets

Lined Paper
Pencil
Spelling List

Read your spelling list.  Think of words that rhyme with your spelling words.  Choose a word and write a rhyming couplet.  Underline each spelling word.  Continue to write until you have used each of your spelling words.  Have someone help you edit the rhymes.  Neatly rewrite the rhymes on a new sheet of paper.  Share your rhymes. 
Example:
Pop is nice    
With lots of ice
 

Design a Code

Lined Paper
Pencil
Spelling List

Think about different types of symbols.  A symbol could be a letter, number, picture, and so on.  Which symbols would be easy for you to make?  On your lined paper write the alphabet spacing the letter by skipping one line between each row.  Chooses a symbol to represent the letter a and write this symbol on the line above the letter a.  Choose a different symbol to represent the letter b.  Write this symbol on the line above the b.  Continue to choose and write a symbol to represent each letter in the alphabet.  Do not repeat any symbols.

 

Encode Your Spelling Words

Copy of your spelling list
Copy of the official code (students may make this up)
Writing Paper
Pencil

Fold the writing paper in half to for two columns.  Write your spelling words nearly in the left column.  Use your official code to disguise each spelling word and write the encoded words in the right column.  (List the words in the same order in the right and left columns.)  Fold the left hand column in half so you cannot see the spelling words only the encoded words.  Give your partner the official code and the spelling word codes and see if they can uncover the words.

 

Encode a Spelling Message

Official Code
Writing Paper
Pencil
Spelling List

Write a message using all of your spelling words.  Have someone edit it.  Replace the letters in your message with the symbols in your code to disguise your message.  Leave a space between each word.  Write the encoded Message neatly on the writing paper.  Make an answer key by writing the decoded message on writing paper with the spelling words underlined.
 

Spelling Exaggeration

Spelling List
Paper

An exaggeration is to stretch the facts beyond the truth.  To make things more extreme than they are.  For example an exaggerated sentence would go like this: Tom and his little brother Samuel walked for days and days until they can to the fair.  Ton and Samuel rode the roller coaster miles into the air and back down again.  It seemed like the end would never come.  Please write sentences using exaggerations.  If you can, for your sentences into an exaggeration story. 
 

Spelling Postcard

Postcard
Pencil
Spelling List
Crayons or Markers

Begin by looking over your spelling words and brainstorm some ways that you can use them in a message.  Think of your favorite vacation spot.  Pretend you are there, and write a message to a friend on the postcard.  Use as many spelling words as you can in your message.  Underline the spelling words as you go.  When you have written your message, then address your postcard using a real or fictional address.  Lastly, design a postage stamp in the square in the top right corner of the card.  Draw and color a picture of the vacation spot you describe on the other side of the postcard. 

 

Spelling Story

Spelling words
Pencil
Paper

Begin by looking over all of your spelling words.  Think of a main character that could do, see, or be some of the words on your spelling list.  Begin your writing by placing the main character in a good place doing something exciting.  Try your best to include each spelling word as the story goes on.  Underline your spelling words so you can see them more clearly.

 

Venn Diagram

Venn Diagram
Pencil
Spelling Words

Write the name of two categories on the circles of your Venn diagram.  Choose a spelling word.  Decide in which set it belongs.  Write it neatly in the appropriate set.  Repeat for each spelling word.  Add five words from previous spelling lists to the Venn diagram.  Write a sentence or two describing the location of the words in your diagram.  (e.g. Describe how may words fit in each category)

 

Spelling Memory

Cards
Spelling List

Begin by writing one spelling word on each card.  Then mix up the memory cards.  Place them face down and in neat rows.  Find a partner to play with you.  One person begins by turning two cards keeping them in their same place.  The object is to try to find a match.    Let the people in the game study the cards for a few seconds then turning them over again.  The next person takes his/her turn.  If you make a match on your turn you get to go again until you dont find a match.  Continue to play until all the cards are picked up and matched. 

 

Graph It

Graph Paper
Pencil
Spelling List

Fill in the category names for each row of your graph at the bottom. (foods, long vowel sounds, prefixes, school supplies, etc.) Look at your first spelling word.  Write the word in the first open box of each category in which it fits.  Write words that do not fit in any category below the graph.  Repeat for each of your spelling words.  Using words such as most, fewer, less, and greater than, describe the data on your graph to a classmate.
 

Spelling Sentences

Spelling List
Pencil
Paper

In this center you will be writing sentences using your spelling words.  It is important to be able to use your spelling words in your writing and this is good practice.  As you write each sentence think about using words that make an image appear in the mind of the reader.  Take your time to write a good quality sentences with correct punctuation.  Underline the spelling words as you write.

 

Categorize Words

Cards
Spelling words
Paper
Pencil

Begin by writing your spelling words on the cards. (one on each card)  Pass out the word cards to members of your groups making sure each person gets about the same number of cards.  Your job is to put the cards into groups and give each group a name or title.  The group titles can be anything from nouns, verbs, people, things that grow, or short vowel sounds, long vowel sounds and consonant clusters.  As a group, start placing the cards together with other similar cards.  Once all the cards are in a group get the paper and pencil and write down all the words in the group and their group title.  On you have done that rearrange the cards into new groups with new titles.

 

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long a sound r-controlled vowel /r/, // suffixes ful, less
short a sound r-controlled vowels /r/, /r/ calendar words
long e sound r-controlled vowels /r/, /r/ plural nouns
short e sound words with more letters than sounds singular possessives
long i sound words with more consonant letters than consonant sounds plural possessives
short i sound words spelled with qu, squ suffixes ness, ment
long o sound consonant clusters compound words
short o sound words spelled with final -en states
long u sound r-controlled vowels /er/ continents and nationalities
short u sound suffixes with er, est soft c sound
words that end in -le or -el homophones hard c sound
vowels /yoo/ or /oo/ prefixes un, re, pre soft g sound
vowel diphthongs /oi/ or /ou/ suffix er hard g sound

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Check back later on this Fall for a program that can make choosing spelling words easier for both you and your students.  My brother who is a computer programmer is making me a program that will enable me to add all the spelling word choices for the week and let the students choose the 15 they want without retyping them. This list can simply be printed out and used for the student to study from.  I am really looking forward to it.

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