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Help your child to become a Spelling Bee Champion!

 Our regular spelling teaching in school currently follows quite prescriptive guidance from the New National Curriculum regarding age appropriate expectations in spelling patterns, rules and shapes. With your support at home, we know that this new ‘Spelling Bee’ initiative will complement the learning in an exciting and motivating way.

At the start of each term your child will bring home 100 words to investigate and explore different spelling rules, exceptions and common ‘tricky’ words.

During the last week of each term we will challenge your child to spell a small selection of the words correctly, awarding special certificates for both ‘high achievement’ and for ‘good personal improvement’. Of course this will be carried out sensitively, recognising that all children develop their skills at differing rates.

Words are fascinating! Please help your child to explore and enjoy them. Spelling shouldn’t be a boring slog. It’s about thinking, not just memorising lists of words.

Do

  • Point out interesting differences in the way sounds are spelt (e.g. bed and head)
  • Work out rules together (e.g. skate, skating drop the e when you add -ing to words ending in e)
  • Be word detectives!  Look for smaller words within longer ones.(e.g. football, birthday)
  • Look for word roots and origins (e.g. photograph, photosynthesis)
  • Look for word families (e.g. rhyming words that are spelt the same – came/lame/same)
  • Break words into syllables (e.g. re-mem-ber) and affixes (e.g. dis + satisfy)
  • Use a mnemonic (e.g. necessary has one collar and two sleeves) and make up your own mnemonics!
  • Give lots of praise for good guesses.
  • Have fun together!

Don’t

  • Nag or criticise incorrect spelling. Try and find out which bit is causing the difficulty.
  • Spend long sessions laboriously working through lots and lots of spellings.
  • Give your child reasons to lack confidence (e.g. I was hopeless at spelling when I was at school)