Over the last year, we have been working at home on ways of helping my youngest learn spelling words. From multisensory methods to traditional ways, it's been a long progress but it is working. One of the ways that we support her learning of the words is with a spelling wall. It's a really simple idea but works well especially where we have it positioned in the house.
Spelling Words Wall
When you visit most classrooms in a primary school in the UK there are lots of displays of words "Word Walls" in the classroom that support the children with their learning. The Word Wall's help to model how these are written and spelt as well as seeing patterns in the words and provide a resource for them to use.
The idea works - even in my high school classroom I had words around the room - the science room was full of terms that I knew needed to be remembered and my computer classroom with prompts, HTML and CSS coding reminders etc...
Taking these ideas I wanted something really quick that we could reference easily and support the learning of spellings at home. So as we sit down for a family meal twice a day in our dining room and it's where you will find the kids most of the time drawing and crafting it seemed the perfect location.
Materials Needed for your Spelling Word Wall
A packet of Post-It Notes
Setting up this Spelling Words Activity
- Take the week's spelling words and on each post-it note write one of the words.
- Place the words on the wall.
How to Learn Spellings with this Activity
The first way that this method is helping with learning the spellings is the fact that the spellings are seen. When we pass to lay the table we are able to read then, spell them out loud and see them in a prominent place.
As we sit as a family and eat my husband, myself or her brother may prompt with a "How do you spell..."
I have found that this simple spelling aid works best if we switch around the position of the words in the week.
Where there is an difference in the pattern of the words e.g. Diving, Moving, Skiing (the double ii) I highlight this is someway to make it possible to identify the difference and remember it.
How successful has this been in helping to learn spellings each Week?
Well, good question at the beginning of the year she was disheartened by the spellings and we were told to focus just on 5 words instead of the 10 words each week. With those words she would maybe get 1 or 2 right. Since introducing this we now focus on the whole list of words and although she hasn't yet got 10 out of 10 her confidence has soared and she frequently gets over 7 of the words right.
Spelling is part knowledge, part remembering but also about confidence and any way that we can help to build that confidence is useful.