Even as an adult, spelling can be challenging. So when your child begins to feel frustrated by their spelling skills, it’s important to help them work through any challenges they may be facing. Spelling takes time, practice, and patience. Here’s what you can do to make the process interesting, motivating, and, most importantly, fun!
Just like there are different types of learners, there are different ways to learn how to spell. If your child is struggling with their spelling, try each one of these strategies. You never know which one will work!
The most common method of spelling, phonetic spelling teaches children how to listen for the sounds that make up a word and then how to use a letter or a combination of letters to represent that sound. First, encourage your child to learn to separate words into segments or syllables.
Rule-based spelling goes hand-in-hand with phonetic spelling. For example, rules can help your child distinguish when the sound of /j/ is spelled “j,” “g,” or “dge.” Some common rules include the silent e, how to make words plural, and that all proper nouns should be capitalized! You can check out some of the most common spelling rules here.
Morphemic spelling is similar to phonetic spelling in that you are breaking words down into smaller units. Morphemic spelling will help your child focus on the meaning of the word to help them spell better. For example, if your child knows that “ed” indicates something that happened in the past, they’ll be more likely to end a word with “ed” rather than “t”!
Backyard Spelling Game
Bring these spelling tactics to life by turning your backyard into a life-size Scrabble game! To make the pieces, visit your local home improvement store to purchase a 4- by 8- foot sheet of Masonite. Then have the store cut the Masonite into 8-inch squares. You can also sub the Masonite for cardboard, but note that the cardboard pieces won’t last as long.
Once your squares are made, apply a press-on vinyl letter to each title. If using cardboard, you can also use a marker to write letters directly on the squares. Be sure to include all vowels and skip duplicates of less commonly used letters such as Q and X.
Once your letters are created, it’s time to turn your backyard into a giant Scrabble board! Stack tiles facedown in piles of ten. Each player should then pick a pile with any extras becoming the draw pile. Then, play as you normally would play a game of Scrabble!
Lake Forrest Prep, a private school in Orlando, wants to help your child be the best they can be! By turning spelling into a fun game, your child will be begging to practice their skills! For more tips on how to help your child practice their spelling, math, and reading skills, check out our blog!