6 Fun Activities to Improve Your Child’s Spelling

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Learning and memorising how to spell can be challenging for children and adults alike. The rules and exceptions of spelling can leave children feeling confused and disenchanted to learn.

Spelling is important because it aids in reading and writing. Proper spelling facilitates clear written communication and helps your child communicate their ideas through writing in school and beyond.

We’ve put together some fun and simple activities to improve your child’s spelling – minus the frustration! Read our previous post: 

1. Letter Lily Pads: On large pieces of butcher paper, print the letters of the alphabet. Cut the area around each letter into the shape of a lily pad and lay them out on the floor. Have two of your children pair up to play this game, or team up with your child yourself. Have your first person read the word aloud. The second must step on the letters to spell the word.

2. Stair Steps: This is an easy one to help your child memorise the way certain words are spelled. Have your child write each word as if they are stairs, adding one letter at a time. For example:

R

Re

Rea

Read

3. Spelling Ball: Here’s something the whole family can take part in. Stand together in a circle with a ball. Call out a word, toss the ball to another person, and have that person spell out the word, and so on. If the word isn’t spelled correctly, then whoever has the ball tosses it to another person who will try to spell it.

4. Magazine clippings: Have your child cut out the letters from a newspaper or magazine to spell words. This will encourage them to consider each letter carefully and individually, while creating visual representations of the words as a helpful memory aid.

5. Scrambled Spelling: Give your child a number of scrambled words. You can use alphabet blocks or fridge magnets, or even make your own by writing letters on pieces of paper. Then haven them unscramble the words within a time limit. This game makes a great competition for multiple little spelling bees!

6. Spelling Train: Read a word aloud and have your child write it down. Using the last letter in that word, ask them to write another word beginning with that last letter. They can continue the ‘spelling train’ using the last letter of the word. For example:

Toe

Eat

Tea

Ant

Tin

For more fun spelling tips and ideas, read our previous blog posts 5 Fun Ways to Remember Spelling and 5 Tips to Improve Your Child’s Spelling.

5 Fun Ways to Remember Spelling

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Remembering how to spell certain words is so much easier when you’re having fun. Try some of these fun activities to improve your child’s spelling:

  • Rainbow Letters – give your child three or four crayons and ask them to write a word over and over again in each colour, layering the colours one on the other to create a rainbow.
  • Telephone – to play this game you will need to make a string/fishing line telephone with cans, or you can just use one of those cardboard tubes that come with wrapping paper. It’s pretty simple, just whisper words and their spelling to each other through your telephone!
  • Sand Box – writing words in sand can help your child remember their spelling. If you don’t have a sand pit in the back yard you can always place sand in some kind of shallow storage device, or better yet, go to the beach!
  • Shaving Cream – this could get messy, but it’s also a lot of fun. Spray a layer of shaving cream on a flat surface and allow your child to write their words in the shaving cream.
  • Fridge Magnets – say the words and have your child spell them on the fridge – a nice activity to take your mind off the dishwashing!

Remember, if your child has difficulty spelling a word, make sure you always praise them if they spell part of the word correctly, and try and suggest what else is needed instead of just giving them the answer. For example, if they have written part of the word, you might say; ‘You have three of the five letters right. One of the letters should be doubled. Can you tell me which one it should be?’

Visit www.readingeggs.com to see how your child can learn to read while having fun with Reading Eggs!

5 Tips to Improve Your Child’s Spelling

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Learning to spell can often be far trickier for children than learning to read – even some adults have trouble spelling! Try these 5 tips to help improve your child’s spelling:

  1. Create a Word Wall – designate a space easily accessible to your child – whether on the fridge, a whiteboard, or simply a piece of paper hung on the wall – where they can write any new words they encounter. With every glance at the word wall, your child will reinforce their memory of these new words, as well as have a handy reference to check their spelling.
  2. Circle words – when your child makes an attempt at writing, ask them to circle the words they are unsure of. It’s a good idea to add these words to your word wall so they are continually exposed to their correct spelling throughout the day.
  3. Keep a Spelling Journal – your child may have the tendency to ask you the spelling of certain words when they write. A great idea to encourage self-sufficiency and reinforce their memory is to keep a spelling journal. At the top of each page they can write a letter of the alphabet – page 1 being ‘A’, page 2 ‘B’ and so on. Before your child asks you how to spell a word, ask them to check if that word is already in their journal. If not, ask them to write the correct spelling of the word on the appropriate page. Their spelling journal will eventually fill with words and become an invaluable learning reference.
  4. Word of the Week – assign your child a particular word for the week and challenge them to try and use it when writing. The spelling of this word can be slightly more difficult than the words they usually learn to spell. Make sure you congratulate them each time they use this word and spell it correctly.
  5. Record and play back words – Use your phone to record your child reading the words on their word wall. Play back this recording and ask them to spell each word as they are spoken (pausing when necessary). The aural stimulation of hearing their own voice reading the words combined with writing the same words down provides a multi-sensory experience that helps memory retention and provides a fun new way to learn spelling!

Visit www.readingeggs.com to see how your child can learn how to read while having fun with Reading Eggs!