Crossword puzzles. Hidden words. Fill-in-the-blanks. Join-two-or-three-parts-of-words-together (not always at syllable breaks..agghh….). Graph paper practice. Circle the correct spelling. Highlight the word families. Syllabication. All viable spelling word practices. Some work. Some don’t. Some work for some kids but not for others. Enter my Six S Spelling Secret Packet–the technique that is used weekly in my Character Quality Language Arts program–and that brick and mortar and homeschool teachers are using weekly thanks to our new downloadable products!
Before I explain the four ways that students practice their spelling words with this packet, I’ll give some tips associated with the methods contained in it:
1) Students need to use multi-sensory spelling practice methods. Some kids learn better visualizing; some writing; some speaking aloud.
2) Students should not be burdened with practicing words that they already know how to spell.
3) Students benefit from incremental practice. If this step doesn’t help, the next one might. The incrementality in this packet helps students learn what works best for them!
4) Students get better at spelling practice by repetition. By doing the same steps each week to practice spelling, they become skilled at using those techniques.
5) Students work harder on pre-tests and pre-practice (practice before the practice!) if they know they might be able to drop some spelling words from their practice steps. This helps them look harder at words to see what they already know.
6) Students are encouraged by protocols that show them that “they know more than they think they know”! This packet does that for students (along with teachers who continually tell them that “they know more than they think they know!”).
7) Teachers like built-in spelling practices that are user-friendly for all word lists and that are easily mastered by students so that the practice becomes automatic each week.
To learn more about this product via audio, click here.
The “Six S Spelling Secret Packet” gives your students four helpful ways to practice their spelling words–three traditional methods and one “secret” method! These methods work for students of all ages, but are especially effective for second through eighth grade students who are able to self monitor their progress (which this packet will help them learn to do even more!).
Here are some suggestions for using the Six S Spelling Secret Packet:
(1) The first page of the packet is a traditional “pin-point your challenging words and syllabicate and copy.”
This works especially well with spelling programs in which the syllabication is given for the student’s spelling words–though it is also effective for extremely phonetic learners who can syllabicate on their own. If the student does not desire to syllabicate, the lines are provided to simply copy challenging words multiple times for repetition. This step also gives the student the option of listing words under the coordinating spelling commonalities/word families in Language Lady’s Spelling Notebook. This is optional, of course, but for those desiring to create your own SN, the preview of the SN (available at Teachers Pay Teachers, CurrClick, and Character Ink Store) gives the Table of Contents that may be used to create a phonetically-based, systematic spelling notebook for recording mis-spelled words.
(2) The next two pages of this packet contain two pages of graph paper with two different sizes of boxes in the graph.
This allows younger learners who write larger to use the larger boxed paper and older learners with smaller penmanship to use the smaller boxed paper. Writing each word, one letter per box, helps many students visualize their spelling words, one letter and one shape at a time.
(3) Lastly, the “secret” part. The instructions for the Six S Spelling Secret Sheet are given on the actual sheet for each student. Here are some other keys to using this document:
(a) Stress to the students that they only need to use The Six S Spelling Secret Sheet for words that they mis-spell in a pre-test. This alone is sometimes enough encouragement for a student to practice prior to the pre-test. (They will not have to work on any words
that they “passed” in the pre-test.)
(b) Work through the columns of the sheet with your students one column at a time for one word, completing each step that is listed for each column. You will want to do this several times in order for them to be able to do it completely independently as they study
for their spelling test.
(c) Emphasize honesty in the cover, write, etc.. portions of the sheet. While it isn’t a test per se, looking up the spelling (not covering or folding the page over) will not help the student learn how to spell the word (obviously). Encourage them to complete the sheet as
it is given, reminding them that this repetition and multi-sensory approach will help them become excellent spellers.
(d) For classroom use, I recommend that you have a pocket or stacking tray or other area in which students can pick up copies of The Six S Spelling Secret Sheet at any time (even if you pass out a sheet to each student weekly).
(e) Consider passing out the sheet each week when you give new spelling words–and walk through one word (a challenging one from their list) with the students at that time. They will be more likely to use the sheets on their own if they are emphasized and even
re-taught each week.
Enjoy my freebie for subscribers this week! I hope your spelling practice goes amazingly well this semester!