Spelling Contracts

Discussion in 'Third Grade' started by blondie77, Jul 30, 2009.

  1. blondie77

    blondie77 Rookie

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    Jul 30, 2009

    Being a new teacher and new to third grade last year, I implemented the spelling contract that the 2nd grade teacher in my school used. If a student received a 100% on the pretest (and the words were sent home the Thursday before in my newsletter so they could study over the weekend) they did not have to participate in spelling lessons or take Friday's test, and they completed 3 activities off of a spelling contract that parents and students signed. I tried to correlate the activities into all aspects of our curriculum (example: draw a life cycle). I am finding that this year, I am thinking that even if a student gets a 100% on the pretest, I want to ensure they understand the lessons and how/why we spell words the way we do (CVC, CVCE, etc). I was afraid that some students last year just memorized words. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? Thanks!:)
     
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  3. newbie23

    newbie23 Comrade

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    Jul 31, 2009

    We use McGraw-Hill Reading and although this is my first year at this school, it's the same program we used during reading.

    Personally, I find that the words are fairly simple for the top students but spelling is intertwined often with the reading and language arts as well. I do less spelling "worksheets" and more activities I think which helps students want to participate even if they think they know all of the words. Sometimes these exciting activities help to challenge the students who just memorize them the night before the pretest and then forget them right after (I was one of them!)

    I also use bonus words from our vocabulary list. The top students feel like they "need" to get these right and they don't penalize for wrong answers so it has been a win-win in the past.

    I've tried to do the 2 lists and work my way through the dolch words before but found that sometimes that created more self-esteem issues and frustration along the road. I do keep track of the words each student missed and will throw those in as additional words later on in the year.
     
  4. kacieann

    kacieann Companion

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    Jul 31, 2009

    I have my students complete the pretest and they do not have to take the post test or complete any spelling homework for the week if they make a perfect score. My students still have to complete the required lessons in class. Many times the lessons require more skills than just spelling the words correctly.
     
  5. blondie77

    blondie77 Rookie

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    Jul 31, 2009

    Thank you for the responses!:)
     
  6. dunwool

    dunwool Rookie

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    Aug 2, 2009

    Do you do the spelling contracts and then homework on top of that or is that your homework for the week? I am thinking of incorporating these into my homework packets but I am not sure what all I should be giving for homework. I am a brand new teacher so I don't want to overload the kids. Thanks for any help!
     
  7. kacieann

    kacieann Companion

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    Aug 4, 2009

    I am planning on completing them for classwork only. I am still not sure about spelling homework for the year. I think I will come up with a few games they are to play with their parents. I think with students completing the contract in class there will be little need for homework.
     
  8. jenejoy

    jenejoy Companion

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    Aug 5, 2009

    I teach a spelling rule each week. So I assign 10 words that are able to be memorized as the sample words (when I modify for a student they only learn these words.)I then give 5-10 additional words using the spelling rule on the test. I found that this helped focus students on not memorizing whole words but the various spelling rules. It improves their spelling overall in their writing because as we practice a rule they are internalizing it so that they can be successful on the spelling test. So with that said, when I give my pretest I don't let students out of doing the work who have aced it. They get those words correct and have to fidn additional words for the homework that fit the rule and take the spelling test on Friday.
     

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