Spelling success and sounding skills are first cousins!!!! . Sounding must be the first step before spelling can improve. It is a skill that needs to be taught explicitly, daily and with enthusiasm. Children’s ears need to be tuned into the sounds in words.
Write what you hear
Over many years I have decided that the best rule for beginning spellers is, “write what you hear”. It sounds so simple BUT it works. This rule means that if you hear the letter name you write that letter, if you hear the letter’s sound you write the sound’s matching letter. Let’s not complicate the process that early spellers are using to write.
The other strategy I use is to make the words with cards or letter rocks so that the writing of the letter does not complicate the work of spelling.
Spelling warm up
Phonological awareness exercises should always begin a spelling lesson. These are the warm up exercises. Following this I go over the basic sounds with the children. For this early level of spelling, these are only the sounds of the alphabet.
When beginning this skill, it is important that only a few letter cards are used. I use the letters; a b, c, d, f, h, m, n, p, r, s, t, v. I have only used one vowel at this time to give time for consolidation before moving on to other vowels.To begin concentrate only on three letter words.
Simply, the spelling word must be given in a sentence and then the word is said again and stretched out into the individual sounds and the student moves the cards to make the word. The teacher should be saying all of the above to begin so the student is only concentrating on the letter cards. Once the child is able to make the words easily with this strategy, the child will stretch out the words.
Continue with this strategy until bit by bit all of the letters of the alphabet have been introduced. Take notice of the way your child is managing the pace that you are working at and PLEASE, PLEASE don’t go so fast that the child never has time to feel comfortable with their level of success.
One important clue. If you use these strategies consistently for three days a week and make sure that the lesson is engaging and fun, the child will learn to spell confidently. Don’t give up, it is your child’s future at stake. If you need extra support meet me on Facebook and leave your concerns. http://www.facebook.com/pages/Letterbox-Learn-to-Read/257419317604354
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Ann Foster is a teacher with a unique talent to provide back to basics step by step programs/products and tutoring for students in Australia and overseas.
Her programs and products help children, teachers and parents to achieve extraordinary results quickly. She has a track record of bringing into action programs that are easy to follow and that achieve results.
Ann has been working online teaching students and adults successfully for the last four years and has taken children from average results to well above.Her programs are tried and proven and bring clarity out of chaos. Letter Box staff solve problems and puts wings onto dreams.