Sometimes I use dictation to help students focus on spelling and sound patterns in English. This is one variation.
Word Family Dictation:
1. I draw two columns on the board and write a word family at the top of each column. Students copy the columns on paper.
2. I say a word and students repeat it. Students then identify which column the word belongs in.
3. Students sound out and write the word on their papers.
4. I ask the class to spell the word aloud as I write it in the appropriate column on the board.
Here are some contrasting word family dictation options:
Spelling those sight words in English is a challenge for us all, but it’s a particular challenge for our low-level literacy students. This is a technique I learned from a Special Education teacher. It really works!
1. Sound: I say the word aloud and students repeat it. We do this several times. I ask: How many syllables does the word have?
2. Print: I write the word in large letters on the board as each student writes the word in large letters on a blank page.
3. Kinesthetics: I trace the shape of each letter in the word with my index finger as I say its name. Students repeat with me. Then they do this on their own. Sometime they “sky-write” using their whole arm to trace the letters in the air.
4. Spelling: Students close their eyes and look at the word in their mind’s eye. I ask visualization questions like,
- How many letters does the word have?
- What is the first letter?
- What is the last letter?
- How many vowels does the letter have?
5. Writing: Students open their eyes, flip over the page and write the word on their own.
What do YOU do to help students spell sight words?