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At what age do your children spell correctly?


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This varies by child. I had one that never put a misspelled word on a piece of paper and probably never will. His spelling has been better than mine for awhile now, so if he does, I won't know it. My dd has always been a good speller, so from the time she started writing (4ish) most words were spelled correctly, but even today they are rarely all spelled correctly. sigh.

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My ds is 7 working on 2nd grade Abeka. He is one of those care free happy-go-lucky types, so whether or not something is spelled correctly is no big deal to him. He spells okay when concentrating on it but otherwise doesn't. I'm working on Improving it but am wondering if there is an age/stage when it finally clicks.

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My ds is 7 working on 2nd grade Abeka. He is one of those care free happy-go-lucky types, so whether or not something is spelled correctly is no big deal to him. He spells okay when concentrating on it but otherwise doesn't. I'm working on Improving it but am wondering if there is an age/stage when it finally clicks.

This is my dd too (also 7). If she is made to stop and think through the phonetic sounds she can do well, but mostly she doesn't stop to think and does a 'good enough' guess. :glare: She is constantly asking me 'how do I spell...?', just like her father, though she does better than him 90% of the time!

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At what age do your children spell well? For example, you send them off to write a paper, and the paper they being back to you has most of the words spelled correctly? Thanks in advance!

 

 

Specifically in answer to the situation you list (spelling while writing) -- on average, along about grade 5-8. For some students, not until into high school; for a few students it is as early as grade 3.

 

Writing requires brain maturation in three different areas for the three different activities of writing: *thinking* of what to write, the *physical act* of writing, and *spelling/proofing*.The ability to simultaneously juggle all three activities takes until all three brain areas mature, and then can "speak" to one another during the process. Some people never are able to do this, and writing will always need to a multi-step process (with going back at a separate/later time when the brain has had time to change gears in order to correct spelling as one of the steps).

 

JMO, but I would not send a student below grade 5-6 at the youngest off to write a *paper* on their own. Yes if it a journal entry, a story they are working on, answers to worksheets, etc. But not a paper; in fact, not even a single paragraph until they really have the writing process down (middle school). Students really need guidance, direction, hand-holding, modeling, and a teacher to make them see writing as a *process* all along. Otherwise, students have a tendency to think, "There! I've put words on paper! It is done, it is sacred, and if you ask me to change it, that would be sacrilege!" Or they see it as you torturing them, since putting words on paper to begin with was so hard -- how could you ask them to "do it again???!"

 

I like the way SWB explains that while speaking is a natural, easy to learn activity for most students, writing is not. It is very different from speaking, and is artificial, hard and is a process that must be learned.

 

A good strategy is to train your students to think of writing as a multi-step process from the very beginning. Treat each step initially as a separate activity, spaced apart to allow the brain time to change gears -- even to doing just 1 step per day, so it takes a week to complete a writing assignment -- but it is done *well*:

 

1. Brainstorm; create a key-word outline or use a graphic organizer to capture your thoughts

2. Actually write from the outline/organizer -- this is the "sloppy copy", so you DON'T try and proof while writing, otherwise you shut down the creativity.

3. Revising -- adding/subtracting, changing, improving the writing.

4. Proofing -- checking spelling, subject/verb agreement, punctuation, etc.

5. Make a final copy and hand it in.

 

 

As your students get older (late middle school/high school), you can give them a checklist to take along with a writing assignment, in which they must do the different steps in the writing process, and check them off as they do them. When they had the paper back in and they checked off all the things under proofing as "done", but clearly they did NOT proof for spelling, you can legitimately ask why spelling wasn't really corrected, and you have the hard proof in your hand that correcting spelling WAS part of the assignment...

 

 

Teaching writing is HARD and requires a lot of diligence on the parent's part to make sure the student really does understand how to do it, and then actually does DO all the steps. Over.and.over.and.over.again. :ack2:

 

 

Warmest regards, Lori D.

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At what age do your children spell well? For example, you send them off to write a paper, and the paper they being back to you has most of the words spelled correctly? Thanks in advance!

 

 

You mean that's supposed to happen? :lol:

 

Really depends on whether they're NT (neurotypical) or not, how much you've been working on it, whether there are vision problems, a whole host of things. If you're so frustrated you're ready to spit, yeah there might be a reason that goes beyond age/maturity.

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This year at age 8, after working on his spelling program for a couple years, he is spelling more words correctly than incorrectly. I expect a lot of spelling errors still. Many of the words he wants to use, he hasn't gotten to in his spelling program yet. That's ok. He's only 8. I feel pretty confident that he'll spell decently by high school. :)

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JMO, but I would not send a student below grade 5-6 at the youngest off to write a *paper* on their own.

 

 

 

I have purposely left out the writing part of our curriculum, because I don't think he is ready for it. So, he isn't sent off to write a paper. He does have a couple of workbook pages that he does on his own though. I got IEW for when I feel like he is ready to start a writing program.

 

I'm more so looking for an idea of when their spelling comes easily and not something that requires a lot of thought. :)

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my daughter still makes some mistakes & she is 11. we always review her rough draft together & correct any misspelled words. mistakes are not a big deal for me though, as she is only in the 5th grade. some are careless mistakes, simply because she was focused on the writing process more than spelling (so a word may have a letter missing - but i know it is one she can spell, so i just circle it for correction). other times it may be a bigger word that was spelled with good effort, but is incorrect. those words are rotated into her spelling review.

 

her 2 best friends are in public school here (in 6th grade & 7th grade) and my daughter spells better than them both, so i'm really not concerned.

 

i have no doubt that she will continue to spell well as she continues to write more. the more she puts it into practice, the better she will become.

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My dh still can't spell, but he was taught using the whole-word method and not phonics. I had very little phonics but am an excellent speller. This is going to vary so much depending on the child's inate skills and abilities, as well as how strong a phonics program they have used.

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Well both of us are proving that "theory" wrong though aren't we? I was taught with very little phonics and am an excellent speller. So I don't credit phonics for that.

 

Yes, but my dd spells like her dad, and phonics is making a huge difference for her. There is definitely a combination of nature and nurture that goes into how well a person spells.

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Now that I am thinking about it, it seems to me that I read something somewhere that you should not expect correct spelling to begin showing up in writing until about 4th grade. I thought it was in WTM, but I can't find it now.

 

 

SWB said it... I think in her teaching writing in the elementary years lecture? It's probably in the WWE instructor text as well.

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As far as sight word versus phonetic teaching... My DH was taught to read with sight words only. He says he can't tell the difference between "friend" and "fiend". Thankfully, his job is all computers, so spell check is always available. I taught myself to read at a young age (3-4). I read very phonetically, but it's not because I was taught phonics. I intuited the phonics. I'm an excellent speller (errors in my posts are usually Swype errors ;) ), and I basically sound words out as I spell them. Some words I "think to spell". I don't just memorize a string of letters. I was certainly never taught O-G/Spalding type rules and phonograms, but as I learn them, they help me remember some tricky spellings.

 

I agree that it's probably a combo of nature and nurture.

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Ummm...

 

LOL

 

(Lori D's post is good. If you get to about age 10 and the spelling isn't improving, you might be able to fix many of the errors by teaching how to add a few of the most common things like ing, ly, and ed, work on a few of the homonyms like there/their/they're, and teach a few of the famous spelling rules like i before e. We worked on them one at a time and I sat next to them and watched them write, stopping them and making them fix things right away. That got tedious after a bit, so they began to be more careful. I ony did that during dictation. Then, after they've got those rules down, you can teach the spelling rules from this site: http://www.dyslexia.org/spelling_rules.shtml That helped my children. And me. When they are older, spell check gives instant feedback and helped improve my teenagers' spelling. I could see fairly early on that getting my particular children to spell well when they were young was going to be a giant time sink and that we would be better off putting that time into something else, like learning to draw or learning a foreign language. I kept working at it, but we didn't do a million years of spelling books (since they weren't retaining anything) or worry about it too much. I just told them they would HAVE to have somebody proofread anything important.)

 

Nan

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DH (37) wrote a receipt for gas in the checkbook as "gass". His recent entries on the grocery list include "vanela ice cream" and "letis".

 

You asked about kids, but so far DS12 and DD10 are horrible at spelling, and I'm blaming DH for that. I'm a natural speller and don't remember ever having to work at it.

 

DD10 does have dysgraphia, so I'm assuming DS and DH probably both have some undiagnosed learning disabilities and are not representative of the general population.

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If you get to about age 10 and the spelling isn't improving, you might be able to fix many of the errors by teaching how to add a few of the most common things like ing, ly, and ed, work on a few of the homonyms like there/their/they're, and teach a few of the famous spelling rules like i before e. We worked on them one at a time ...

 

...Then, after they've got those rules down, you can teach the spelling rules from this site: http://www.dyslexia....ing_rules.shtml ...

 

...When they are older, spell check gives instant feedback and helped improve my teenagers' spelling...

 

 

 

TOTALLY agree with Nan on how to tackle improving spelling when it is an older child and they are still struggling with spelling. And Spell Check is a big help as they are writing their papers on the computer for instant feedback.

 

Megawords was also excellent (for grades 4-5 and up)l for teaching vowel patterns and syllabication to assist spelling.

 

Also practicing several spelling words in a short dictation sentence helped hone the simultaneous juggling of 2 of the 3 balls -- the practices writing and spelling together, and takes out the "thinking of what to write" portion.

 

Also learning root words and ending rules is very helpful; in grades 3-5 we used worksheets from Mary Pecci's Super Seatwork: Word Skills; it also practices syllabication and alphabetizing, among other skills.

 

We used the ABCs And All Their Tricks (Bishop) for spelling/vocabulary while in middle school/high school; it is helpful in showing word origins to understand spelling patterns.

 

BEST of luck in your spelling journey! Warmest regards, Lori D.

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I was never a good speller. I don't have any natural spellers (yet) although dd#3 has a better visual memory than her two older sisters & thus does better at remembering the correct spelling more often. Oldest has finally gotten to the point (age 11) where I don't shudder at the thought of her grown-up-self writing something (essay on the SAT, thank you notes for her wedding) many years from now. There are glimmers of hope on the horizon that I won't teach have to keep "spelling" as a subject on her yearly list forever ....

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My dh still can't spell, but he was taught using the whole-word method and not phonics. I had very little phonics but am an excellent speller. This is going to vary so much depending on the child's inate skills and abilities, as well as how strong a phonics program they have used.

I taught myself how to read before I entered kindergarten and I'm pretty sure I just recognized words. I am an excellent speller, and it's not because I know phonics so well. I can just look at a word and it will not look right to me. I may not know how to spell it (I do know how to spell most words), but I can tell if it's not right.

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My son, 8, seems to be a natural speller. He was taught to read with phonics and it was a slow process, so the fact that he has picked up spelling so much easier came as such a surprise. He doesn't however remember how to spell words based on rules or such but based on remembering what they look like from reading.

 

Dd 5.5 is just reading a little bit now and doing a bit of spelling so it is far too early to tell how she will be. Glad to read of the various ranges of proficiency in this.

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