Despite the proliferation of spell check in word processing documents, it is still important to teach spelling to children in school. Not every document will be written in a computer program, nor will these programs pick up every mistake. Proper spelling is a fundamental part of language arts skills and continues to be taught in elementary schools across the United States.
Students who have trouble spelling may need remedial help. While most problems can be overcome with time and practice, it is important to help and encourage a struggling student. Reasons children may have trouble with spelling include:
Classroom teachers and tutors can help students reach their potential by planning exercises and activities to reinforce spelling rules and words. Practice and repetition of the words to emphasize concepts, patterns and rules regarding syllabication and word structure is helpful, but other tools can be used as well.
Other ways to help students reach their spelling potential include use of the following approaches:
Reviewing a student's progress is imperative to helping him/her learn. Seeing growth and progress is a motivational tool for the child and helps the teacher understand what strategies are working.
Students who need remedial help with spelling benefit from practicing skills at home. Communication between schools and parent is imperative. Teachers should send home word and vocabulary lists for the student to practice with. Reading and writing these words can help, but other activities will also make a difference.
Interactive computer games and websites can provide entertainment and reinforce spelling rules. Additional ways to practice words at home include:
Talking to your child's teacher about his/her progress can let the teacher know you are involved and are working on skills at home. The teacher may be able to suggest different activities and ways to approach spelling practice at home that you have not considered. Keeping the lines of communication open with the school is the best way to help your spelling-challenged student.
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