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Last updated 26 October 2012 15:30 by NZTecAdmin
Suggestions for teaching spelling: step 4 (PDF, 71 KB)

Many tutors have identified that their learners need additional help to progress with their spelling skills. The suggestions here follow the steps in the spelling progression. Some have been adapted from material available at http://www.dfes.gov.uk/ curriculum_literacy/

Learners at the 4th step

Learners need to use strategies to spell more specialised words, including those of many syllables. They need to use knowledge of how more complex words are built (prefix + Latin root + suffix) to spell more advanced words.

Suggested activities

  • Teach learners to use spelling strategies and dictionaries to check spelling as part of the standard proofreading process for their own writing.
  • Working in groups, learners can individually identify any new word they have needed to spell in the past week. Anyone can volunteer to spell it and then you or the learners put the correct spelling up on the board.
  • Take a list of common homophones or near homophones (for example, their, there, they’re; hear, here) and ask learners to compose sentences that include those words.
  • Learners work in pairs or groups to share some mnemonics to remember tricky spellings and write these mnemonics in their spelling dictionaries (for example, e + a and a + e = separate; i before e except after c).
  • Learners work in pairs to identify root words from words with prefixes and suffixes. For example, impractical: im (not) + practical (sensible, able to be done).
  • Learners identify common problem words (for example, occasionally, argument) or groups of words that have a common spelling pattern (such as tough, through, thorough, enough). The learners can make a set of memo cards by writing the word on a card and highlighting the part that causes confusion.


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