What is the most effective way to challenge the youngsters who get every spelling right, all the time?

It’s the same old story: Letters and sounds. (Or put another way: Lttrs n snds).

How can we persuade children who get 90% or more in all spelling tests to develop an interest in the written language?

To practise spelling children need to use letters and sounds over and over. They need to embrace letters, get to know spellings, and in essence see the written language as a central part of their lives.

This means practice and exercises – and that is what makes up the books we sell. We provide structured, organised, practice and exercise.

But we would also suggest that sometimes it is worth stopping the lessons and playing a little game.

Such as getting the children to wrt wrds wth th vwls tkn out. A e i e ooas ae ou. (And then with the consonants taken out). Strange that, isn’t it, that words without consonants are harder to decipher than words without vowels? But it generally doesn’t take children long to work out why – and playing games with words and letters enhances their grasp of what is going on.

Sometimes they might be asked to write their names backwards. There’s one colleague who even got so far as to read out the class register with the names backwards. Never has registration been so enjoyable.

Does it help them to spell? There’s no real proof. But it is a spelling activity that genuinely is highly enjoyable for the children. (It is one of the activities that most children report to their parents that evening and remember for years to come.)

Quite simply because it makes letters and spellings interesting – not so much alien abstracts sent to torment children but rather items to be played with, experimented with, have fun with. And through that process – learned.

It is the theory of the “occasional pause”. The stepping back from a theme can re-motivate the children. (It can also be a game that parents can play with their children at home.)

So the message is, sp*ll*ng has to be learned, but can also be f*n.

Free sample pages of our Spelling Practice KS2 revision (Phases 3-6) and Spelling Practice KS2 Extension (Phase 18+) books are available on our website atwww.topical-resources.co.uk/literacy

(And just to be clear, we don’t have words with vowels removed in the test. That was just our way of stressing the point: we all see the written language through different eyes.)

If you would like to know more please call 01772 863158 or email us at enquiries@topical-resources.co.uk

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