Sunday, October 23, 2011

Word Study 5 Ways

In Language Group we work on studying how words are put together. We cover common spelling patterns. And we practice reading and writing frequently used words. The goal is that these words become part of the children's reading and writing vocabularies, part of the words that the children can read and write without having to break them down.

I have used various approaches to studying frequently used words over the years. The one I like best is from About the Author: Writing Workshop with our Youngest Writers by Katie Ray Wood with Lisa B. Cleaveland. Each student is given a sheet each week with five words from our Word Wall along with a checklist of ways to practice those words. Students are to choose five ways to practice from the checklist. Choosing how to practice the words adds to the students' investment. The list includes everything from rainbow words (writing the words using rainbow colors) to making the words with Unifix letter cubes to back writing to stamping them with letter stamps. A couple of years ago one of the students came up with the idea of finding and pointing out the words on the Word Wall. That way was taken up by the other students and now is on the list each week. This year’s students enjoy exploring the different ways, and each is developing favorites.

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