Helping a youngster learn to spell can be both challenging and rewarding. But not to worry, there are strategies to get this done and help your child get better at spelling words.
Here are my 6 top strategies:
1. Grade Your Child’s Spelling Knowledge
Assess and grade your child’s spelling knowledge. The best teaching practice starts with learning what he/she already knows, so you know where to start from.
So, take a moment to access your child’s knowledge of spelling by asking them to spell a list of common age-appropriate words.
This assessment allows you to start teaching at your child’s current level of competence.
2. Prioritise Spelling Lessons
Before you proceed to assessing and committing to teach your child how to spell you should invest a little more time on spelling lessons. Invest a little time every day in independent word work.
No doubt, this can be difficult to handle, because it will require a personalisation of your child’s learning ability.
The trick is to plan ahead to include spelling instruction every day, multiple times per day.
Also, consider creating the inclusion of spelling words in the different areas of study; even in a math lesson.
3. Teach Word Knowledge, Not Just Spelling
Start by teaching sight words, i.e., words that they are likely to encounter often.
Some of such sight words include: they, because, are, again, said, friend, and were.
This trick alone goes a long way in helping youngsters learn how to spell.
Now, post crossing the familiar words bridge, teach your child to consider why the word is spelled as it is.
Teach her the rules behind the spelling.
For example, explain the reason for the silent e, and how it affects the sound of the word.
Things like adding an e to a simple 3-letter word usually makes the vowel long, rather than short.
Teach them word knowledge, not just spelling.
4. Encourage Them To Notice How Words Come Together To Make A Larger Word
For example, the combination of fun and silly to make ‘funny’.
Your child might enjoy clapping the syllables, then writing letters for each syllable.
Help him/her identify different spellings of rhyming words, such as place and race, or here and there.
Children need lots of opportunities to try the correct spelling to see if it looks right.
Provide resources around the house- dictionaries, calendars, charts, word walls, etc.
5. Encourage All Writing, Regardless Of Spelling
Writing and spelling are two distinct academic areas.
Having your child write, without worrying about their spelling, will help them become more confident writers, spellers, and speakers.
Also Read: 5 Ways To Raise A Child Who Loves Science
Provide opportunities for them to write about things that are important to them: fashion, football games, video games, school outings, or pets are popular topics.
6. Expose The Child To Written Words
The more a child is exposed to written words, the more likely he/she is to internalize the spelling of the word.
If you’re working on particular spelling words, point them out in books, on TV and online.
Highlight with a marker to emphasize that the word she’s learning is also found in the “real world” if possible.
Some kids might learn well auditorily but others might need to see you spell out a word before they can copy it. Try both strategies and see what works.
School-aged children may appreciate reading the same stories over and over again.
If this is the case for your child, take advantage of this repetition to highlight different words found within the same story.
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