When we discuss errors in writing, we have to talk about spelling. I’ve suggested in class that there aren’t a whole lot of payoffs to committing large resources of time and energy to spelling instruction, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t care about spelling (or that our students shouldn’t care). I’ve collected some practitioner articles that might help you when working with struggling spellers in secondary classrooms. These links will take you (in most cases) to the HBLL electronic versions of the journals or articles.
“Awesome Mess or Good Compromise?” by Jim Meyer
Meyer analyzes the underlying issues behind spelling and spelling issues in a very straightforward way. He suggests underlying linguistic patterns at work in spelling that may be helpful to students who struggle. [Article Link]
“My Kids Can’t Spell and I Don’t Want to Deal with It” by Sandra Wilde
Wilde has some excellent ideas in this article for helping empower struggling spellers with specific strategies that will help them overcome their challenges without encouraging them to rely overly much on the teacher. [Article Link]
“My New Teaching Partner” by Reva Potter and Dorothy Fuller
Our students might assume (as do many adults) that spell-checking technologies have eliminated spelling problems. Not so, of course, and this article suggests some important ways we can help students be more critical and aware of the benefits and limits of these programs. [Article Link]