If you have a child in school or you are homeschooling, chances are that you might have a need to work on spelling words in your home. Although, I do know that there are some homeschoolers that don’t use weekly spelling lists, but rather feel that children will learn to spell just by being immersed in language and reading. If that’s you, you still might find that some of these methods will help with words that your children are having difficulty with.
If weekly spelling lists are a reality of your homeschooled or traditionally educated child’s life, then why not try a new activity next week with your kids while they study their words?
Ideas for Studying Spelling:
1. Have children type all of their spelling words into a word processing program (This is great typing practice as well!)
2. Painting Words – Instead of writing out the words, they actually paint them out to write them.
3. Write words with their fingers in things like sand, shaving cream, rice, corn meal, finger paint, etc.
For a child with special needs that may be more tactile defensive, this is great practice at learning to tolerate tactile stimulation. If it’s just too much for them, however, fill up a Ziploc bag with some finger paint and seal it up. Lay the bag flat and smooth the paint out throughout the bag. Your child can trace words in the paint without directly putting their fingers into the paint.
4. Workbook Pages – You can either use pages provided in a curriculum they may be using or create your own
5. Write or type words in a pyramid or stair step shape. For example, pretty might be written as stairs like this:
or like this…
(and then they can draw a triangle shape around that)
6. Make flash cards that they can look at and study either on their own or with a parent or sibling. Your could even stick the cards around the house where they can see them often!
7. Write each word 3 times, 4 times, 5 times...whatever your choice is. But, each time the word is written, have them write it in a different color. In the end, they will have a rainbow of spelling words.
8. Have siblings work on quizzing each other.
9. Help your child find if there is a pattern to the words. If there is, help them to recognize it and discuss how it might help them, if they are unsure while trying to spell a word. For example, if they know that all of the words this week have an “ou” in them, they know they are going be watching for that in each word.
10. Make “snakes” out of Playdoh and then use the snakes to form letters — spell out all words (one at a time) in the dough.
11. Write the words in sentences. But, to jazz this up, perhaps you could make up a guideline for it like my fifth grade teacher made. She allowed us to write as few sentences as possible, as long as we could write good sentences with as many of the words in them as possible. (This was a highlight of our week. Why write ten sentences when you can get all ten words into just three rich, detail-laden sentences?)
12. Allow the kids to spell words to you aloud while doing some physical activity. Perhaps they can skip rope or bounce a ball to give themselves a rhythm for spelling. This is great for those wiggly kids!
13. Sidewalk chalk!
What fun methods do you have for practicing spelling?
photo by elginwx