weak reader & speller

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by PinkLily, Sep 30, 2007.

  1. PinkLily

    PinkLily Companion

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    Sep 30, 2007

    I have a student in my class this year that is very weak in both reading and spelling. The strange thing is that when he reads, he is sometimes able to read some of the bigger words, yet he has trouble with the simple words like 'at', 'with', etc... This student also knows his sounds and many phonetic rules, yet I can barely read his work. Usually if I point out a mistake in his work, he can fix it. But again he can't spell simple words like 'good'. Any ideas on how I can help this student become a better reader and speller?
     
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  3. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    Sep 30, 2007

    I can't help you but thought I'd share that last night my second grade son was reading to me and he read "confidential" correctly and then in the next sentence read "a" as "the" and some other equally as easy word incorrectly. He does this regularly and it drives me bonkers! In a nutshell he focuses well on the harder words and gets them correct. The two and three letter words like the, or, an, at, in, on... he just assumes he knows and sometimes substitues in another word which often makes sense, but isn't the one actually written.

    Wish I had some advice on how to limit this from happening, but I've yet been able to get my son to stop doing it. If I hold up the words as flash cards he does them fine, it's when they're in sentences that he reads them wrong.
     
  4. snickydog

    snickydog Groupie

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    Sep 30, 2007

    One thing I've found that helps my first graders is making flash cards of sight words like the short words you're mentioning. That might help with recognition. Maybe the student is making a great effort to sound out and think about those harder words and then doesn't take the time to recall the short ones. Also, what about trying different spelling techniques for those short words - writing in shaving cream, Play-Doh, etc?
     
  5. halpey1

    halpey1 Groupie

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    Sep 30, 2007

    I'd say this is a fluency issue too - too often kids are only taught to 'decode' without stopping to check for meaning... I'm guessing that if these 'smaller' words are read incorrectly, the meaning breaks down. Have the child stop after each sentence and ask them if it makes sense... most likely they need to SLOW DOWN and pay attention to ALL the words instead of rushing... unfortunately kids are many times taught that reading FAST is what we want from them. Hope this helps. :D
     
  6. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Sep 30, 2007


    You need to bump him into the visual cueing system. When he says a different word that makes sense he is working in the meaning cueing system, which is great because he's thinking about what makes sense and probably comprehending well but he's not reaading the words on the page which will ultimately affect comprehension. When he makes the error say, "Does that word look like------? Try again." For example if he says 'fence' instead of 'gate' have him go back and look at the word- 'Does that look like 'fence'? What letter does that word start with? What word could it be that starts with /g/? Go back and read the sentence, get your mouth ready for a /g/ word...'
     
  7. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    Sep 30, 2007

    Often dyslexics can read the larger words because they don't have those confusing vowel blends and things. The spelling and reading probably need to be evaluated.
     
  8. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    Oct 1, 2007

    Keep working with him! The flashcards, shaving cream, clay are all great ideas. Another one is to have him get a magazine and cut out words from a list you give. Make the list a focus of the words he regularly misses. Then he could make a poster and read the poster to you - you could even put it up in the room where he could refer to it.

    I read last year that a child must see a word 60-100 times before he recognizes it by sight. So hang in there. He is a late bloomer maybe.

    One other hint that has worked miracles for my lower readers - get books on topics he is specifically interested in. That will motivate him a lot.
     
  9. PinkLily

    PinkLily Companion

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    Oct 1, 2007

    Thanks for all the suggestions. The student in question has been tested and he is getting some help from our reading resource room. He has also had some testing done that indicates that he is at risk for learning disabilities. I'm thinking that he may be dyslexic as he often has letter reversals, but that's something that I'll have to look into a bit more. I'll continue to work with him and hopefully we'll see some improvements before the end of the year.
     
  10. Pattie

    Pattie Companion

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    Oct 1, 2007

    Another thing you could try is taping a post it on his desk with 3 of 4 words you want him to memorize for reading and for spelling. Start with the first 25 most used sight words and see which ones he can't do. I do this every 3 or 4 days and then add a new little batch of words. I remind them several times a day, "What are you special words Bobby? Are you reading them to yourself? Good job!" and stuff like that. They think it's a game between us and it is fun for them to come tell me they have learned them. I give them new ones at guided reading. Also, do spelling practice on white boards or chalkboards with him and a small group every day doing chunks like ot, at, ick, uck, oo, etc. Use the 37 rimes and lots of digraph practice and er and ing. They will pick them up just by rote practice. :up:
     

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