The key to spelling right lies in using the most efficient approach.
While there are several ways to teach a student to spell correctly and effectively, approaching the art of spelling from a scientific standpoint has got to be the most efficient of all. It, therefore, goes without saying that when the art of spelling a word is approached in a scientific way, amazing things begin to happen in a student’s mind!
When I teach my dyslexic students how to spell, read and write with more success, it is this scientific approach to spelling I use. I have found it more progressive than other methods and as far as studies tell, this approach has been researched, used and proven for well over 50 years!
Students will re-train their brains to THINK about spelling strategies and rules when coding or decoding (spelling or reading) a word when applying this scientific approach. What teacher doesn’t want to instill independent thinking within their students?! If you are anything like me, I love when I see my students using their “smarts” to think through something & realizing they CAN do whatever task is put in front of them when they put the effort into it!!
So, to help you achieve the same level of success that I have achieved with my students, I would share with you a fun and free activity that would help you develop a scientific approach to spelling with your students and by extension, effectively turn around dyslexia.
This fun activity is designed to assist students in thinking through why a word is spelled or pronounced the way it is. When students think through words they are familiar with, they soon develop the strategies that would help them in times when they encounter words they don’t know when either spelling or reading.
To get started, you’re going to make your students “Word Scientists” for the day!
What I do in my class is; I provide my students with science goggles or lab coats to help get them into character. This makes the whole experience so exciting and really engages the students!
The “Spelling Really is Scientific” activity is editable so you can design each page for your student’s needs and to correlate with what you are currently learning or reviewing. Here’s the five-step procedure to getting the best result out of this activity.
Step 1: First, enter a word in the 3 boxes at the top of the page. I chose “picnic” for the video below. Divide the word in three different ways, one being correct.
Step 2: Print out the “Syllable Division Experiment” page for each student. You could create individual pages for each student or small group. So each group gets a page.
Step 3: Students would now attempt to point out which of the 3 words is divided correctly. Here are some posters I have hanging up in my word work area that remind my students of the syllable patterns to look out for
Step 4: Following step 3, students will “Work It Out!” using the “Think Sheet”. The “Think Sheet” has questions to guide student’s thought process by breaking the word into syllables and putting it back together again in order to prove…or not prove their predictions.
Step 5: There is an optional writing extension where students can reflect on what kind of prediction they made & what they learned from working through the “Word Experiment.”
I am so excited to share this fun and meaningful activity with you! It is a freebie in my TpT store. Head over and download the file so you can start teaching your little “Word Scientists” effective, research-based scientific approach to spelling and reading right.
I would love to hear your feedback on this activity – Is there something more you’d like added? What were some of your student’s responses? Let me know in the comments, message me on Turning Around Dyslexia’s Facebook Page or tag me in your post of your “Word Scientists” at work on Instagram (@turning_around_dyslexia)