Sunday, 9 March 2014

Blogging.... Hmmmmm

Well, here I am blogging, writing a post, so I can receive comments and be excited about what other people think of what I write or the topic I write about. I cant believe I am spending my Sunday afternoon expressing what I feel and think in a blog. My own blog....

Maybe I should have titled this post "Working on Words", relating it to the Daily 5 that we are all working so hard on implementing in our classrooms. I am "Working on putting words together" in this post, or is that just the same as "Working on Writing"?

I recently read an article about spelling - why some kids cant spell and why spelling tests wont help.
In the beginning I was horrified to read that the activities I have my children do to practise their spelling does not actually teach spelling: look cover write check, looking for small chunks, words within words etc. But as I read on I became more interested in what spelling teaching should look like.
Finding meaning in words is important, not just memorising a string of letters. That sounds are important but so are the morphemes in words. The example the article used was the word “jumped”. It has two morphemes - “jump” and “ed”. We can understand the meaning of “Jump”, but “ed” is also meaningful because it tells us that the jump happened in the past. It goes on to suggest that when assisting kids to spell words we should ask "what does this word mean" rather than "what sounds can you hear".
So, to develop a love of words, stories about words, meanings of words, will assist in teaching kids how to spell. Interesting concept. As part of the daily 5 we teach the kids to "tune into interesting words". Perhaps this can now become a part of our "Work on Words", linking reading to writing to spelling...


  1. Hi Lea,

    I just posted a comment and "it just disappeared" Well I never. Thanks for your post about spelling. I too found it interesting and I was worried how I was teaching spelling. I do think we need a mixed approach and students needs as many strategies as possible. What fits one word doesn't always fit another. Just like we orchestrate the use of cues when reading the writer needs to be able to orchestrate a range of strategies to enable spelling to happen. I guess the most important thing is for the children to have a spelling conscience. So they search out to find out and can see when something is not right.

    I also wonder how much spell checkers will be used in the future as more assessment comes online. Also I wonder about the importance of oral language as speech to text becomes more commonly used. What do you think?
    Cheers from Jenny

  2. Lea,
    You are blogging!!! Awesome first post.
    I feel out of the loop with the Daily 5 and I have no idea what the CAFE menu is but if someone hands me a hot chocolate and GF muffin when I walk in their classroom well that would be pretty cool.
    At school council last night we had a discussion about Naplan results and in particular writing. There was a lot of discussion around the thought that technology was having a huge impact in secondary students writing skills measured over a few years. Will be interesting to monitor this further as the school in question has a mix of primary and secondary students completing Naplan.
    Enjoy your blogging journey.

  3. Nice work using Social Media and Blogging Lea.
    Do you find that there are times where the Daily 5 learning changes focus each week.
    For example if students get better at reading, you realise that students are requiring support in other areas all of a sudden?


  4. Hi Lea,
    I also read that article on spelling and had similar thoughts about the way children 'Work on Words' in my classroom. Spelling has looked different in my class over the past few years and will probably continue to change as I constantly reflect on my teaching practice.
    We have spent some 'Work on Words' time looking at prefixes and suffixes and what they mean eg. tri, triangle, tricycle, etc along with many other strategies. As Jenny said we need a mixed approach to teaching spelling.
    Happy Blogging!