Spelling help

Discussion in 'Special Education' started by Funsuperteacher, Nov 23, 2020.

  1. Funsuperteacher

    Funsuperteacher New Member

    Nov 21, 2020
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    Nov 23, 2020

    I am a teacher who is currently providing private tutoring instead of classroom instruction. I have a special needs 7th grader who can't spell beyond simple CVC words. He can read them, but there is some kind of disconnect when he actually has to spell them (orally, verbal, or written). I have tried to teach him basic spelling rules, but he neither remembers them nor understands them. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to help him learn how to spell? Thanks.
  3. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

    Jul 19, 2014
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    Nov 24, 2020

    Take this as an observation of a personal nature. My son would today be considered on the spectrum, but they called it Asperger's when he was small. Some of the deficits and weaknesses he displayed were enough to make me want to pull out my hair. We would work, he would seem to make progress, but by the next day, we would be back at square one. The child study team he had in MS was simply amazing. After extensive evaluations, they confirmed the lack of ability to hold on to newly learned material, showing up more with math, but also with spelling in language arts. But the other thing they learned was that although he had difficulty holding on to the new information, he had no problem when it came to knowing how to acquire the missing information, whether it was 2+2, or spelling. Best advice they ever gave us was this - be grateful that he is high functioning enough to be aware that even if he doesn't remember 2+2=4, he never failed to be able to use his calculator, which was already mandated for him. Similarly, we made sure that he became proficient on the computer in word processing, since that meant that many of those words that vexed him were covered by spell check. The calculator and the computer were the great equalizer for my son. With them, he could not only keep up, but actually excel where he had once struggled mightily. The principal at the school district could see that my son was really trying, and he didn't take out his disappointment on others when he got it wrong. Her view was the school simply needed to make it easier for him to be more right than wrong, and once that started happening, he was building one success on top on another.

    My son is now an ESL teacher, and he often has students who struggle above and beyond being non-native English speakers. The unspoken rule is that ESL students don't get evaluated for IEP's, even though common sense would seem to dictate that the percentage of students who would benefit from an IEP should be somewhat constant across the board. Knowing that he can't get any of his HS students evaluated, he teaches them what he was taught all those years ago - he makes sure they get competent on both the computer and the calculator. Giving them those 2 tools can help level the playing field. I only know how much it changed the mindset that teachers had about my son in MS and beyond.
  4. Morah

    Morah Rookie

    Dec 23, 2019
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    Dec 1, 2020

    Have you tried a curriculums such as Fundations, Just Words, or Wilson Reading System? Really, these are curriculums made to reach reading and spelling together, but maybe you can modify it to focus more on the spelling aspect. It is very systematic and breaks downs spelling rules and teaches each rule one at a time.

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