Monday, May 16, 2016

How To Best Help Students Transfer Spelling Skills

How To Best Help Students Transfer Spelling Skills by A Word On Third


Have you ever felt like you work really hard to teach word study, but you're just NOT seeing the work transfer? 

I've been there! I'm lucky because a really talented teacher from the Reading and Writing Project over at Columbia's Teacher's College comes into our school for staff development. She has helped me to completely change my word study instruction for the better. I'm going to share 2 of my favorite tips that she shared with us. I hope you like them as much as I do!


1. Students should edit their writing.

During writer's workshop is when we hope to see the changes in spelling taking place, right? So it makes sense that we have to PRACTICE using our spelling strategies in the writer's workshop setting if we are believers in balanced literacy! I have an 8 day word study rotation in my room, and one of the things we do after I introduce the spelling principles to each group is we edit our writing. If you're teaching long vowels that follow the vowel-consonant-magic E pattern,  have them look for words with this pattern they may have spelled incorrectly. Whatever spelling principles you're teaching should be searched for in their writing. I like to have the kids edit their most recent writing first and work their way backwards.

You might choose to have kids edit independently or in partnerships. Both are fine for this as long as students working together are in the same word study group! You can see more about my favorite game for peer editing by clicking here or the picture below.

How To Best Help Students Transfer Spelling Skills by A Word On Third


This is really great because it teaches kids that we edit as we write and draft, not just on the days we set aside to edit before publication. Real writers do both!


2. Students should hunt for words.

This is fabulous--all I do is have the kids read a text and then hunt for words that would fit in their word sorts. They might read a science or social studies article if I am struggling to fit it all in or just read from their just right books. I make sure to stress the importance of reading a part and then going back and hunting to make sure that there isn't a breakdown in comprehension.

You can download my word hunt by clicking the picture below. It's not in my store because it took me 2 seconds to make! It's just in my Google Drive.

I really like having the kids work on this because it helps them to become more aware of the words they see that follow certain spelling patterns. 

If you're looking for more word study activities, you can view a freebie in my store by clicking the picture below. I love choice menus because they improve student engagement in a BIG way!



By the way, are you following me on Facebook? From now on, I'm posting my Morning Meeting tips every Monday morning. Make sure you follow me on there to benefit from Morning Meeting Mondays! I will post a tip for greetings, activities, sharing, or morning messages to keep your meetings fresh and fun. I posted one this morning!

Which word study tip might you use? Any different tips you love? Comment below!

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