Do you do this practice? I still do, but
I guess I am getting tired of it and wondered
what other things you do? Besides the
Workbook activities, I do word finds,
scrambled words, fill in the blank,
games such as sparkle and hangman,etc.
I was thinking about saving the 5x each
until after the practice test. Any ideas?
journal made out of a 8 x 11 sheet of contruction that I have the children Rainbow write their words. My Third Graders really enjoy it! For example...happen they write the word in yellow (no real order) then they copy over it in orange, then red, then purple, then blue...I have them choose at least 5 colors. They have the word written 5 times and it is a lot more condensed and FUN! Hope this helps!
But since I did my research for my master's on spelling, I hate to hear anyone say they make their kids spell words more than once!!
Research shows that kids do not learn how to spell words by writing them multiple times, in 'rainbow' colors, or many of the other spelling activities that we give them (no matter how 'fun' we think they are). We are only creating 'Friday spellers'. They spell the words correctly on the test, but can they correctly spell them in their daily work? Look into Words Their Way. Children learn to spell on a continuum- they must master certain patterns before they master others (98% of the English language has predictable patterns). It is very similar to guided reading- they have an instructional level they should work at.
I'm sorry, I know I just leaped onto a soapbox. But after my 1 1/2 year long project, I will never go back to teaching spelling the way I used to.
and then continued practice with the pattern they are working on. Words Their Way by Bear, Templeton, Johnston, and one more person (I can only remember those three from all the citations and referring I did!) is an excellent resource.
And unfortunately, I do not get a kick back from them for talking about their book so much!
To all, Thanks for the discussion of spelling instruction. Spelling has changed a great deal in the last 25 years of teaching. It is still a subject that parents feel comfortable doing with their children so I try to incorporate some safe activities that are family friendlly. In my classroom, however, I try many word sorts. This is kid friendly for my regular and special ed students. This week we are working with -le and -el words. They did much better on the pretest after a word sort than doing other kinds of activities.
I know that alot of the writing is not helpful, and it is
time consuming to boot. They mispell the words
when they do the 5 times each. I guess I have
continued it because it seems expected around here,
and I had a couple of parents question me when
I stopped the practice for awhile last year. They
seemed to feel I wasn't "pushing" their kids hard
enough. Ya Just Can't Win!!!!
Don't have time to figure out how to attach document so I'm cutting and pasting my spelling contract..kids have two choices each night...
Choose one activity to complete each night. Late or incomplete homework will be completed during specials and/or recess.
Write each of your words 3 times (one under the other – not all on the same line).
Write each of your words once and underline all the vowels, then write the words again and underline all the consonants.
Write two interrogative sentences (questions), three imperative sentences (commands), three exclamatory sentences, and two declarative sentences (statements). Each sentence must be at least 10 words long. Use and underline at least one spelling word in each sentence. Label the sentences with IN (interrogative), IM (imperative), EX (exclamatory), or DE (declarative).
Write a story that has 10 or more sentences. Use and underline at least 10 of your spelling words. The story must have a beginning, middle, and end and must make sense. If it doesn’t make sense, it will be written again during specials or recess.
Write words in ABC order and then in reverse ABC order.
Write a word triangle for each spelling word. Skip some space between words so they are easy to read!
c g t
ch gr ti
chi gri tip
Write each word 3 times (going down the paper). Use a different color each time.
Type each spelling word 3 times, using a different font each time.
I do a lot of activities and actually count them for a writing grade. I did not do it for the 1st quarter but for quarters 1-3. I did see a change in Spelling Test grades. I had several students go from a C to an A. I think this was the only way some of my kids studied their words and our Report Card for Spelling is strictly the Spelling Tests!
Of course, they had to do choose some kind of writing activity - sentences, letter to me, story and then chose other color coding, 3 xs each, pictures, etc.
Anyway, I would like to read more about the research. I thought I was doing something good for my kids.
By the way I taught 5th and 6th graders.
I don't know if this is particularly spelling as much it is vocabulary but...
Has anyone ever tried the Making Words (by Patricia Cunningham) method? It's a book where you spell words by sorting out a defined combination of letters. Anyway, I've always wanted to do this, but I've never found time or had the inclination to make a class set of a zillion letters.
Does anyone know if you can buy a class set of letters for this activity somewhere for not a lot of money?
What does it mean to be a "C" speller? An "A" speller?
Is that based solely on practice activities? Test scores? How they spell the words in their writing? You say that the report card grade is only on the tests...so do you grade spelling anywhere else?
Is everyone at the same level? Does a child who does very well on their tests and practice activities but spells poorly in their daily work get the same grade as someone who spells well in their daily work?
Just curious...these are questions I always ask my student teachers when they start talking about grading spelling.
I'd already found this site. I actually even started to print these off but it was quite a big project to make 20 sets of these puppies! I'd love to be able to just buy them somewhere but I've never seen anything like this.
Our District report card Spelling grade is solely on the Spelling Tests that our students take. It says right there - Spelling Test grade. Everyone gets a pretest on Monday and a test on Friday. Most students are on grade level unless they are ELL or have an IEP. Sometimes I might have a student do 20 words and not 25.
I chose to do activities with Spelling words and I count them as a writing grade because of the fact we are just supposed to average the test grades. The spelling activities are worth a certain amount of points and if they spell words wrong, points are taken off. We use 6 traits for writing. If I am grading using conventions, then Spelling is taken off. Every written assignment, in all classes, has a rubric. If spelling is on that rubric then yes, I take off. So, yes we use letter grades, some may not. Being a C speller solely means they averaged a C on weekly Spelling Tests. Should our district change this? Maybe, but this is how we do it for now.