Word Builder is the free spelling activity that helps students visualize word morphology in spelling. I know, that’s technical talk, so here’s how it helps you:
- Students will see a word broken into word parts.
- Students hear the word.
- Students will combine the word parts to form the correct spelling.
- Students get instant feedback on their spelling attempts.
You can use Word Builder in the free spelling unit, Spelling 3: Inflected Endings.
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How to Use Word Builder
Word Builder is one of the simplest activities in our free Word Study courses. The directions are embedded in the interactive videos. Here the quick directions and a few teaching tips:
- Students will listen to and see word parts with a corresponding picture.
- Students can use a blank piece of paper to combine the word parts into a correctly spelled word.
- After a few moments, students will hear and see the correct spelling.
- Students check their spelling against the conventional spelling and make any changes.
Word Builder is a fast-paced spelling activity, so here are a few teaching tips to make it successful:
- Have students set up a table (like a word sort) with the spelling patterns for each video. This will organize their paper.
- Tell students to add letters or edits when checking their spelling, but there isn’t time for erasing.
Word Builder for Transitional Readers
Transitional readers (grades 3-6) often are in similar stages of spelling development. Their knowledge of inflected endings is under-developed. You’ll often find words in their writing misspelled, such as:
Word builder helps transitional readers because it makes spelling visual. These readers have strong phonetic knowledge and good decoding skills, but they need to learn:
- Advanced inflected spellings (i.e. ed when it sounds like t).
- Visual differentiation of inflected endings and other morphological patterns.
In word builder, students can see the base word separated from the inflected ending. After attempting to spell (build) the word, they receive immediate visual feedback.
Word Builder for English Learners
Word builder helps students learning the English language in three ways: vocabulary development, listening skills, and grapheme-phoneme connections.
Word Builder builds vocabulary and background knowledge. Each time students build a word, it is joined with a picture of that word. This builds meanings of basic English words in L2.
English language learners develop listening skills and grammar knowledge as they hear the word in isolation and then in the context of a sentence. Listening comprehension improves by:
- hearing the word and seeing it at the same time (dual-encoding).
- hearing and seeing the correct spelling after attempting it (immediate feedback).
The visual and auditory aspects of Word Builder help students make a grapheme-phoneme connection. They hear the sounds and see the letters. Before they attempt to spell the words, they see the word parts on the screen. This is a highly scaffolded way for students to learn to spell inflected endings.
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