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Beyond the Spelling List

So, the end of the year is almost here and you're still fretting over your students' spelling! Try one -- or more -- of the tips below to add another element to their spelling practice and to help students connect spelling to the rest of the curriculum.

Misspelled Word Search
Are you still correcting misspelled words in students' papers? There's a better way! Instead of correcting misspelled words yourself, simply tell students how many words in the paper they've misspelled and ask them to find their own mistakes. This technique will force students with poor spelling skills to take a closer look at their corrected work.

Share Your Favorites

What are your favorite children's books? E-mail a few of your best-loved titles to Linda Starr and we'll include them in our summer reading list.

Keep It Clean
Invite students to practice writing their spelling words on their desks -- in shaving cream. (Students spray their desks with the shaving cream and then use their fingers to spell the words.) This also is a good way to clean students' desks!
Submitted by Catina Stewart, Albertville Elementary School, Albertville, Alabama.

Draw It and Spell It
Do you have a student or two whose spelling is very poor? Have those students draw a picture of each word on their spelling list and then have the students spell the word aloud. Allow students to look at their drawings when they take their spelling test.
Submitted by Nancy Grant, Villisca Community Schools, Villisca, Iowa.

The Computer Can Spell Too
To reinforce spelling or vocabulary words each week, put the week's words on each classroom computer's desktop screen saver. Every time students look at a classroom computer, they'll see their words! Use a large attractive font and bright colors to attract students' attention.
Submitted by Lindsey Knutzen, Peter G. Schmidt Elementary School, Tumwater, Washington.

You're Out!
Introduce spelling to recess too! Invite students to play kickball as usual, except ask each student to spell a spelling list word before being pitched the ball. If the student misspells the word, he or she automatically strikes out. If the student correctly spells the word, the pitcher rolls the ball, and the game progresses normally.