Spelling is something that is really developmental. Some kids take to it right away, and others just take a little longer. In third grade, we really work on our abilities to spell correctly, and if we can't, we learn to use all sorts of resources to help us get our meaning across. A traditional dictionary doesn't help with spelling--you've gotta know how to spell to find the word to begin with. So, I make special word dictionaries for my kids to use to collect words in. They keep them inside their writing binders and I see them out and being used every day during our writing block. I thought I would share those with you this week since they can be so helpful in the classroom.
To use them, print out a single copy. Then take them to your copier and run the stack front to back. I have my kiddoes cut them apart on the midline and then order the pages. One staple in the corner and they are ready to stick into the pocket of their binder. If you don't use a binder, you can always staple the bundle inside the back cover of your notebook.
During writing conferences, I always give my kids a few words that they really need and we add those right into their dictionaries while we work. It really seems to help my ESOL students, who will often just sit there and write nothing at all when faced with a word that they don't know how to spell. We also add content words and interesting vocabulary words that we run across as we read during our reading block.
And that's it folks! Once again, with no time to draw, I thought I would share a classroom tool that might make things a bit more manageable for you in the real world. I hope you find my freebies useful and that you will continue to visit my little corner of the teaching world.
Have a great weekend!