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Personal Spelling Words

Sarah wrote:

I’m a little behind in your posts, but I was wondering if you would be willing to share the type of spelling program you use with your students? We have a district mandated spelling book that I abhor, so I ventured out on my own this year with Words Their Way. While I love the individualization it gives the kids in support of RTI, I’m not seeing great strides in their personal improvement. I would love to know more about your personal spelling lists etc.

My colleagues and I use Wilde’s Book, Spelling Strategies and Patterns, for weekly spelling instruction.

Each child in my class receives eight personal words to study each week. Their personal word lists come from one of three places:
1) Misspelled words I identify in their writing.
2) 3rd and 4th Grade High Frequency Word Lists (i.e., words I test my kids on that they misspell)
3) If I don’t find many misspellings (as in #1 and #2), then I look towards our vocabulary words, which come from our Interactive Read Aloud Books, as a way to help my students spell slightly more complicated words.

Students give their Word Study Partners a “Buddy Test” every Wednesday and a traditional Spelling Test on Fridays.



Stacey Shubitz View All

I am a literacy consultant who has spent the past dozen years working with teachers to improve the teaching of writing in their classrooms. While I work with teachers and students in grades K-6, I'm a former fourth and fifth-grade teacher so I have a passion for working with upper elementary students.

I'm the author of Craft Moves (Stenhouse Publishers, 2016) and the co-author of Jump Into Writing (Zaner-Bloser, 2021), Welcome to Writing Workshop (Stenhouse Publishers, 2019), and Day By Day (Stenhouse, 2010).

One thought on “Personal Spelling Words Leave a comment

  1. Thanks for the suggestion! I just got my copy of the book today due to the snow/ice storm here in Texas! I’m excited to look at it for my classes next year. Our school district weights the LArts grade 30% in spelling! I will still have to give a grade in this area, so I’ll use this and keep an eye out for any other spelling strategies you have to offer! Thanks again!


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