Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Children Who Struggle to Spell Need Multi-Sensory Teaching



Reading and Spelling Are Linked

Help my child can't spell!  Even in the age of technology where spell checkers abound. Spelling has an important role in literacy development.* Research studies have shown a moderate to high correlation between spelling skills, phonological skills, and reading skills.  Studies have also shown that if children can spell better their reading fluency speed increases.

What Skills Does A Student Need to Spell Well?


In order to be able to spell well student must have two capabilities. The first skill that they must have is phonological awareness. This is the ability to hear sounds that make up words in spoken language. For accurate spelling, students must be able to hear the sounds in words and then write them down in the correct order in which they heard them. Another skill that students must have in order to be able to spell well is the ability to visualize words in their mind. They need to be able to picture the words that they spell in their mind as if they were looking at them on a movie screen. Dyslexic students often have trouble with these skills.

courtesy of Vecreezy

 Multi-Sensory Teaching

There is a six-step multi-sensory strategy which is I use to help students to strengthen both phonological awareness and visualization. Multi-sensory teaching involves the use of visual, auditory, and kinesthetic tactile pathways simultaneously. The first thing that the teacher will do is carefully dictate the word to the student assuring that the student can see the formation of the word on the teacher's lips. After the teacher dictates the word the student uses the following 6 steps to gain spelling and reading mastery of the word.

Six-Step Strategy


1. Say it out -repeat back the word to the teacher so that the teacher can determine if the student heard the word correctly.








2. Tap it out- the student says each of the sounds in the word the student puts a finger down for each sound. I often will use boxes for this part and have the student put a finger down in each box for each sound. Remember it is a finger for each sound not each letter. So in a word like peach they would put 3 fingers down for the 3 sounds.
When tapping out 2 and 3 syllable words have the student tap out each syllable separately. 


3. Count it Out- This step just reinforces the last step. Starting with the thumb the student says the word again and counts how many sounds are in the word. 




4. Write it out and Read- The student will write the word and name the letters as they write them. This way they see, and hear the word as they write. Then they read the word they wrote. This is an important step to multi-sensory teaching.  



5. Visualize and Draw- For this step I have the student make a mental picture of the word. If any sounds are difficult we draw them in a different color to create a stronger mental image. Sometimes we will add a sentence to go with the word and then draw pictures directly on letters that are difficult because they don't say their usual sound.  This is especially helpful for "sight words." This student was having trouble withthe word ground so he added rocks in the o and dirt and flowers in the u this helps create a strong mental image for the student.





6. Visualize and Air Write- After visualizing and drawing to get a good mental picture then the teacher should ask the student to close their eyes and "see" the word in their " mind like looking at it on a movie screen. They should write the word in the air with their index finger saying the letters as they write and then say the whole word.

Using this method consistently will help your students retain their spelling words if you allow for enough practice. 









I have made a poster and chart for student’s desks or notebooks that will remind them of these steps. There is also a recording sheet with visual reminders where the student can write their spelling words and check off each step in the process. You can have them free this week Here. If you find it helpful please leave feedback in my store. Happy Thanksgiving!
I hope this article was helpful. If you have any questions please contact me.










www.aft.org/sites/default/files/periodicals/Moats.pdf
https://www.nmu.edu/education/sites/DrupalEducation/files/UserFiles/Johnson_Mandi_MP.pdf





1.      

0 comments :

Post a Comment