Elementary School Most Commonly Misspelled Words

There are many words that are commonly misspelled by elementary school students, particularly because this time is one where students are just beginning to spell words on their own. Spelling is difficult, because not every word can just be sounded out. There are silent letters, compound sounds, and so forth! Therefore, reviewing a list of these words with your elementary school students will help to ease some of the issues.

Engaged elementary school students in classroom Engaged elementary school students in classroom
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Most Commonly Misspelled Words in Elementary School

Some of the top words mispelled by elementary school students include:

  • accomplish
  • belief
  • clothes
  • deceive
  • dictionary
  • existence
  • February
  • misspelled
  • peculiar
  • quizzes
  • through
  • vacuum

Review and download the printable PDF document below for the full list of commonly misspelled words. It's a great reference resource to keep on hand in the classroom.

Elementary School Most Commonly Misspelled Words


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Teaching Strategies

Teaching spelling can be difficult enough, without the added stress of teaching commonly misspelled words.

  • Be patient with the students. Yelling at students about spelling is just going to frustrate them. It will not help in making them become better writers. Furthermore, the students will appreciate that you are patient.
  • Use flashcards. Even older learners can benefit from the usage of flashcards. Sometimes just seeing the word before them is enough to help them remember it.
  • Encourage the use of tools like spell check on the computer. Spell check should not become the ultimate source for students, because it does have errors in it. However, it allows students to see the word in front of them.
  • Distribute handouts that have both the correct and incorrect spellings of words on them. Allow students to figure out which one is correct. It does not create the high pressure environment of having to spell out a word by one's self, but it does have a similiar effect.
  • Ask students which words they have trouble spelling, and admit that everyone has a few problematic words. Students might feel that they are the only ones who cannot spell.
  • Be sensitive to learning disabilities. Spelling words correctly is going to be much move difficult for someone who is dyslexic than for someone who does not have any learning disabilities.
  • Encourage students to edit their own work. If they learn to pick up on their own errors, they will be more likely to correct them.
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Practice Makes Perfect

Understand that recognizing misspelled words is simply a matter of experience and practice. Many problematic words don't make a lot of sense, because they don't follow conventional rules about how words should be spelled. Be patient. The more the students work on the words that give them trouble, the better able they will be to overcome these challenges.