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My brilliant idea - Spelling it out

Literacy

Ages 7-11

This is an idea to help pupils overcome difficulty with spelling. Select seven words they find difficult. Once they have learnt these words using traditional methods, for example, writing in the air, using the "look, cover, write, check" method, include these words in a story.

The first line of the story is given to the pupils to finish. They practise their handwriting and story writing, while the teacher writes a short story that contains the seven words.

The pupils read the teacher's story. The teacher then presents the same story with the vital seven words missing. Pupils fill the gaps by writing in the seven words in their correct spaces.

The time lapse helps embed the words in the pupils' long-term memories. After this, few pupils will be left not knowing how to spell and use the seven special words.

Rosemary Westwell teaches in Cambridgeshire.

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