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ways to learn spellings

(13 Posts)
partymum Wed 16-Sep-09 13:24:33

My ds1 has just started in year one and they are being given lists of words to learn every week. This consists of a list of words and a grid to fill in where you look, cover, copy and check ie write out the same word 40 times.

Is there no more creative way to learn spellings ?

ForestFloor Wed 16-Sep-09 13:29:46

40 times! Yee gads!
I have no idea, but if it were me, I would repeat each spelling maybe 5 times and leave it there. Could you ask the teacher why they are using this method - it sounds most unusual shock

Pyrocanthus Wed 16-Sep-09 13:40:43

40? Really? Typo? I'll go along with most things for a quiet life, but I think I'd balk at that.

In year 4 last year, my DD2's teacher used to give them word games to do at home incorporating their week's spelling words: making a word search for a family member to do, writing the words out with their eyes shut, writing them out against the clock, and so on. This was in addition to writing sentences with the words in. The games didn't have to be handed in; they were just an aid to memory. My DD found them moderately entertaining and engaged with them more than if she'd been copying out lists. I wonder if some of them might adapt to year 1 children?

ChopsTheDuck Wed 16-Sep-09 13:44:49

We jsut get them to write it 5 times, then I test them. Anything they got wrong they write out another 5 times. We used to practise out loud on the way to school too.

Year 1 seems very early to be learning spellings in such a rigid way. I personally really dont think spellings should be important at that age, they should be concentrating on expressing themselves. At that age, expression and forming letters is mroe than enough to be getting on with.

Hulababy Wed 16-Sep-09 13:48:15

Having to rewrite spellings over and over again is not a nice way to learn IMO, especially 40 times! Talk about destroying a child's confidence!!! How horrid.

However Look, Cover, Copy is a good way of learning tricky words.

Other ways though:

* chanting or singing them; hand clapping or marching up and downt he stairs, bouncing on a trampoline with one letter per bounce.

* writing them into sand

* making them using letter magnets or cards

Do the words have a common theme or sound, such as sh/ch, etc?

MollieO Wed 16-Sep-09 14:35:04

Ds (year 1) has to write out his spelling three times. So far he has refused to do it at all. If he had to do it 40 times I think he would refuse to go to school ever again. shock

Berrie Wed 16-Sep-09 14:37:45

Do you mean 10 words 4 times each?

FernieB Wed 16-Sep-09 15:17:57

One teacher my DD's had taught them to learn spellings using a staircase spelling system. It was really effective. If the word was 'animal' for example, they would write it out in a staircase form:-


The words seemed to stick much better using this system.

It does get a bit tedious when the words are longer - they have 'haphazardly' this week! But probably less boring than writing out 40 times.

BrigitBigKnickers Wed 16-Sep-09 15:46:08

I know writing them down is important to learn the pattern and practise handwriting but this online game might make it a bit more interesting.

You can delete the words and write in his current spellings in the boxes.

Making rhymes up for each letter of the word can be fun too-e.g. seven ants in danger (said)

hocuspontas Wed 16-Sep-09 16:22:32

Are you sure it's not 10 words and 4 columns? This sounds about right for the look, cover, write, check method where you write each word 4 times in a grid.

TwoPersephone Wed 16-Sep-09 16:40:53

Try a water pistol/squeezy bottle and squirting the words on the floor/wall.

Getting out the paints and painting each word a different colour.

Little rhymes work for some words; big elephants can always understand small elephants (because).

Make shorter words in lego on the floor.

As well as the copy cover method, anything to make it less boring and a bit fun.

MaryBS Wed 16-Sep-09 16:49:19

Getting DS to learn his spellings was a nightmare. In the end, I devised a way with him typing them into word. If he got them right, then I'd make the word bigger and change its colour. If he got them all right, then he had a page of absolutely huge words, which he thought was great fun.

partymum Thu 17-Sep-09 14:06:33

Thanks so much everyone - yes my mistake it was actually 5 words 16 times but felt like 40 !

Will definitely try suggestions - wondered about fridge magnets as wasn't sure if part of the task was to to improve writing, but i suppose we would be doing it in addition as we have to produce grid for homework so everything helps.

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