Spelling is stigmatized as a difficult activity in school and most of the children don’t have the skills to spell words correctly and their vocabulary isn’t enough. Teachers, tutors and parents can make spelling fun and learning at the same time by using Scrabble.
Scrabble is a word game that contains word tiles with corresponding scores. Families have popularly played this game for generations and this can be used to teach and strengthen the spelling skills of children with excitement. It is a hands-on activity.
These are the following steps in teaching spelling with scrabble:
1. Take out the scrabble tiles from the board and instruct your students to form words in their vocabulary bank. This way they will be able to appreciate how to break down words and build from the component parts.
2. To spice up the activity, track their formed words and list down the highest scoring Scrabble words created. This they will find it interesting to build more words. Also, by adding up score points, Mathematical skills are also improved.
3. Then, randomly pick seven word tiles and let your students create as many words as they could in a specified span of time using the letters picked. The words can be 1 to 7 letter combinations and it must be correctly spelled.
4. After finishing the round, repeat the process by randomly taking out another set of 7 letters. This activity will help them practice word formation and increase their vocabulary.
5. Next, teach them to use suffixes, prefixes and plural words in order to form new words. They will also learn root words where suffixes and prefixes were added. In addition, they will learn how certain words in the English language are generated.
For example the word "test" is a root word. You can think of a prefix and attach it such as re- to the word test, which makes it "retest". You can also attach suffixes such as -ing, -ed, to form words like testing and tested. Adding -s in most of the nouns create a plural form like tests.
Adding additional letters to the root words can create some words with different meanings. Thus, you can educate children on the use of multiple words. By this they can learn how words are drawn from another. Introduce also (past, present and future) as well as creating plural words.
6. Keep in mind that when students spell words correctly; enforce positive feedbacks by praising and appreciating. But when they misspell words don’t get disappointed, instead give constructive corrections.
With positive reinforcement, students tend to learn best because they won’t get discourage to try harder the next time and they will have an optimistic outlook in spelling words. Negative reinforcement will only decrease their self-esteem and they will be scared to make an effort to get their spelling right.
There are a lot of ways to make spelling stimulating to students. Spelling with Scrabble will surely help them reach their full potential skills in spelling as well as enrich their vocabulary banks. They won’t have a hard time catching up with their classmates when Spelling Bee arrives.