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Spelling suggestions for 6th grade....

SS in MD

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dd has used various spelling curriculums - IEW Phonetic Zoo, Spelling Power, and currently Sequential Spelling. She has been using SS for two years now (started in Book 1 now in Book 3). I don't really see an improvement in her spelling and I'm wondering if we need to switch to yet another program??? Do you all have any suggestions for other spelling curriculums that are geared at struggling spellers?? Help!


Thanks for any suggestions!

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Spelling did not even *begin* to click for our spelling struggler until part way into grade 6, so some students are late bloomers -- it takes until age 12, even 14 for the spelling portion of the brain to mature to begin to "get" spelling.


We've been using Megawords for the past 4 years, and I do think that -- along with his brain maturity kicking in -- that it has been extremely helpful. Megawords teaches vowel patterns and syllabication rules to help students see the root and then prefixes, endings, and additional syllables to give them a method of spelling attack.


Megawords can be used as a stand alone spelling program. We use it as a supplement, and also made our own individualized spelling program, really emphasizing practice of words through a variety of techniques:


- daily out loud spelling back and forth (Phonetic Zoo type of technique; idea from Andrew Pudewa's seminar talk on "Spelling And The Brain")


- working with words on the white board (using ideas of roots and endings, syllables etc. and building words from Sequential Spelling; and making stories/visualizing vowel patterns from the Stevenson Blue Spelling Manual)


- dictation of short sentences with spelling words in them to practice simultaneous thinking/writing/spelling (idea from Stevenson Blue Spelling Manual)


- various tactile spelling practice techniques (ideas from friends and dyslexia tips)



You may also want to look into some testing to make sure this isn't a symptom of a learning issue, such as stealth dyslexia http://mislabeledchild.com/html/Library/DyslexiaReading/Stealth_dyslexia.htm, a vision problem, or a brain processing issue. It's always nice to be able to rule out those things for sure with testing -- or, if you do get a positive test result, it can really help you get a tutor or special help, or help you figure out the best program or techniques for your situation. BEST of luck! Warmly, Lori D.

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it's the most comprehensive spelling method/product I've used.


Spalding Education International


:iagree:with Ellie. Romalda Spalding wrote the book The Writing Road to Reading. This method has worked beautifully for my kids. In fact, my oldest was the struggling speller and she has made huge leaps in her spelling. I will also suggest copywork and dictation several times per week. That has also helped my dd.




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Thanks! Any other ideas?


All About Spelling has made huge differences for us, I blogged about it here. We've used it for just about a year now. I see differences in their writing, and their confidence about writing.


A question for you: are you looking mainly at "freewriting" type assignments--assignments turned in that she hasn't edited? Or are you saying you don't see her improving in her ability to edit her work at all? I've seen improvements in both areas, but I know when my kids are writing something and focusing on the ideas, their spelling and mechanics are awful. They can edit it later, after a break, and fix a lot of things--but the harder the assignment makes them think, the worse the spelling is. Doing both at one time can be really challenging for some kids, and some just aren't ready to put all those skills together at one time. So I'd look at whether this is an issue of her needing the skills broken down more (separate editing time with certain things to look for), or an overall spelling issue.


I use "COPS" when my kids edit--capitalization, organization (neatness etc...), punctuation, spelling. They check for each one, one at a time. And if they can't find their errors, I might mark the line & tell them what kind of error to look for (spelling etc...) and then see if they can find it. Often they can then.


One thing I like about All About Spelling is that it incorporates dictation, so the kids get practice writing (not just a list of words), and also the "Writing Station" where they write a few sentences using words they have studied--the words relate to each other and often my son comes up with funny little stories. This is my son who "hates to write," but enjoys doing this! I know if I just asked him to write sentences about spelling words he'd hate it.


I hope you find something that will help your daughter! Merry :-)

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How to Teach Spelling is great for an older student. The TM has everything you need. Copywork and dictation are a big part of the program. Every lesson has words, nonsense words, phrases and sentences for dictation.


AAS is very similar to HTTS in what and how they teach, but AAS is laid out for a homeschooler in a much better way. HTTS is harder to learn to use, especially if you start with a younger student. I don't think you would have a problem using it with a 6th grader.

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  • 2 weeks later...

We have used Spelling Power for two years. My children are constantly recognizing their misspelled words in books they are reading. The review is great. I have contemplated Phonetic Zoo and might use it down the road, but so far Spelling Power has been giving us great results so I am reluctant to switch at the moment. Good luck. I hope you find what works for you.

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