Archive | August, 2012

Word Study and Spelling

26 Aug

Spelling instruction has an impact on the quality of student writing, but also helps students understand how words work at the level of sound, structure and meaning.

-The Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat, Research Monograph #27, Ontario Ministry of Education

Traditionally word knowledge was taught through memorization and spelling lists.  Currently, the preferred form of learning is through Word Study.  In a Word Study students are not assessed based on their ability to memorize the words provided by the teacher; their assessment is based on their ability to recognize and apply word patterns.

In teaching Word Study, teachers should be aware that even the brightest students need the techniques modelled before mastery can occur.  The level of scaffolding provided by the teacher will be dictated by student need.  Word Study is also not to be completed in isolation.  Students should be encouraged to connect the “theme” of the Word Study to their reading and writing, i.e. Word Study notebooks, adding words to a word wall, etc.  Fostering the ability to make connections will aid in student’s transferring word pattern knowledge.  Word Study needs to be planned and consistent as well as presented in multiple formats, i.e., shared, modelled, independent, etc.[1]

Many teachers inspired by teacher resources such as The Daily Five are implementing a Word Study program in their classroom.  We created this Word Sort resource to help teachers with their Word Study programs as current research supports the concept that “focused spelling instruction has also been shown to have an impact on reading comprehension.”[2]  This package provides words and word study activities to help support the acquisition of word knowledge and word patterns.  This word study package is soon to be available on our download section.

Right now our Word Sort Package (both Canadian and American spelling) can be purchased on Teacher’s Notebook

[1] Dr, Ruth McQuiter Scott, Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat Monograph #27, Ontario Ministry of Education, September 2010

[2] ibid