Now that your child is in first grade, spelling becomes an important part of the language arts experience. In kindergarten, your child experimented with “inventive” or “temporary” spelling, and will continue to do that during the first grade as well. Yet your child will also begin to learn certain conventions of spelling, as well as how to correctly spell basic sight words. This year, you will see your child transform into a Wordsmith: A Skillful User of Words. In our Wordsmith Spelling Program, spelling words are selected based on their frequency of use in reading and writing, by their representation of the phonetic concept, and by their ability to enhance vocabulary and writing skills. Spelling patterns and concepts are taught such as Closed Syllable words, Open Syllables, Silent E Syllables, R Family Syllables, and basic Vowel Teams.
Every Monday, your child will come home with a letter for you with four-six Wordsmith Words written, as well as “tricky” words that we may need for Writer's Workshop purposes.
Every Monday, your child will bring home some spelling words for the week. These words will be written in a special letter to you. Please help your child study the spelling words at home. Saying the word and then spelling it orally is good practice. Have your child try writing the spelling word in one color, then over it again with a different colored pencils, and so on. Your child can practice writing the words on a chalkboard, with playdoh, using magnets on the fridge, etc. Spelling the words in a sing-song, rhythmic way also helps!
Your child will have a weekly spelling test on the week’s words on Friday. (Make sure they always review previous words. We don’t want them to learn a spelling word for a test on Friday and forget about it! ) Even later in the year, I will add a sentence to the test in order to practice all the previous words as well as practice good conventions of print: capital letter in the beginning, spaces in between each word, and punctuation at the end.
So, get ready for a few spelling words every Monday.