Why kids can't spell when they are writing...

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Writer's Block, Dec 9, 2008.

  1. Writer's Block

    Writer's Block Companion

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    So Spellcheck gets some things correct, but when students are writing, they don't have spellcheck.

    On my radio in the car, you can push the INFO button to get the artist and name of the song. Here is what I just saw:

    Flo Rida
    "In the Ayer" (I know, not a new song, but it just made me think.)

    And we wonder..........
     
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  3. mandagap06

    mandagap06 Devotee

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    That is true! I saw a thread on this a while back with the game "wii".
     
  4. dizzykates

    dizzykates Habitué

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    Yep...between that and how some parents choose to spell their children's names I don't see this getting better anytime soon. Artistic discretion should be left to artists at home or once they have graduated school.
     
  5. ELA 11 12

    ELA 11 12 Companion

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    It's "inventive spelling." I don't know who invented the inventive-spelling concept and sold it to public education...

    The song has a good beat, makes my head bounce and I really want to put my hands up...and touch the seelin'...I mean ceiling...:dizzy:
     
  6. Writer's Block

    Writer's Block Companion

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    Totally just cracked up at you for a minute. Now I have that song in my head.

    I think J. Richard Gentry started the inventive spelling idea. I agree with some of it, but at some point, the kids need to stop writing "ayer", "wit", etc.
     
  7. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    "Inventive spelling" is prominent in the younger grades, but by the time they reach upper elementary they should be out of this stage.
     
  8. ebrillblaiddes

    ebrillblaiddes Companion

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    Yeah but how are we supposed to get them out of it?
     
  9. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    After a few years in school, they are SUPPOSED to outgrow this. :)
     
  10. Writer's Block

    Writer's Block Companion

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    "SUPPOSED" being the operative word..........
     
  11. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Yes...
     
  12. ebrillblaiddes

    ebrillblaiddes Companion

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    My sister's 21 and we're still waiting.
     
  13. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    So you're saying I souldn't be concerned about my 19 (almost 20) year old sister? In her defense, she's one of the ones my parents adopted, and the adoptables all have "histories". She has significant learning issues, so the fact that she's a 4.0gpa student in her second year of college totally overrides the fact that she can't spell worth a darn. She makes up for it by carrying a dictionary like most people carry a day planner.
     
  14. Writer's Block

    Writer's Block Companion

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    :confused::confused::confused:
     
  15. CanukTeacher

    CanukTeacher Comrade

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    Hi,

    I'm not sure I agree that kids will outgrow this. I work with some struggling readers and within my county we have moved away from this concept towards balanced literacy (which I think is pretty common, but maybe I'm wrong?) approach - which is a combination of phonics and the "kids will get it on their own' approach (sorry I forget the official term right now :) I do think kids need to be taught how to spell, but not using things like spelling tests. DeByers has a lot of great ideas surrounding this.

    Canuk
     
  16. ebrillblaiddes

    ebrillblaiddes Companion

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    From that story, I wouldn't worry about her--not because of the age, but because she obviously cares enough about getting it right to do the work that she needs to do to make it work out. So, she'll be fine.
     
  17. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Writer's block...my parents take in foster kids, and from time to time, adopt them. They have two biological children, 3 adopted children and one almost adopted child. Their kids were orginally placed in their care after being removed from their biological homes for reasons ranging from prenatal drug/alcohol exposure, to neglect, to physcial, emotional and sexual abuse. You name it, my parents have probably dealt with the aftermath. The sister in question was taken into custody after testing positive for cocaine and heroine at birth.
     
  18. Writer's Block

    Writer's Block Companion

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    I thought you meant all adoptive kids have "histories." Now I understand! Thank you for clearing that up!

    Your parents are godsends to these kids. Amazing.

    (PM for you!!)
     
  19. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    No, I'm sorry for the confusion. I meant just their adoptables. They adopt the children only when there's no place else for the child to go once they leave their care. For example, the child they're in the middle of adopting (once all of the parents appeals for the termination are over), is actually one of a sibling group of 4. The kids all had the same mother, but different fathers. The other three children are living permanately with their respective paternal relatives. This child's father; however, is the perpetrator (the primary charge in the case is sexual abuse, but there's physical and emotional abuse as well as neglect in there as well). The courts won't allow ANY of the paternal reletives to take her since they're defending their father (he has adult children), even though he's been convicted in both dependency AND criminal courts. If my parents let her leave them, she would be a permanant resident of the foster care system, and they won't do that to a child, so they'll keep her. Some people collect stray cats, my mother collects stray kids...and my dad bankrolls it :D
     
  20. Sheba

    Sheba Companion

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    Can you always spell correctly when you're writing? I can't. I tell my kids to point out any mistakes they see on the blackboard and usually at least one's happy to oblidge.
     
  21. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    My brother's - well, old enough to have been in school well before there was "invented spelling"... and we're still waiting on him.
     
  22. ELA 11 12

    ELA 11 12 Companion

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    Spelling is important because paying attention to detail encourages precise language. Language that sounds right is too often misinterpreted...mass media campaigns use that trick to influence the audience. 99% of students are not sophisticated enough to do it on purpose.

    I like "balanced literacy" because I think that Whole Language had that intent.
     
  23. ebrillblaiddes

    ebrillblaiddes Companion

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    I subbed today, and "thru" was in the lesson plan notes. For an english teacher. I died a little inside. This is why kids can't spell--adults, even in education, don't demand it of themselves.
     
  24. Teaching Grace

    Teaching Grace Connoisseur

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    I guess I add to the problem by telling my kids in writing to spell it the best way they can. Of course, we do go back and we check all of our spelling during editing and we use dictionaries!!! Otherwise my students will sit there screaming out the letters and arguing over them!
     
  25. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Since it was on the lesson plans, I'm sure she was just short-handing.
     
  26. Writer's Block

    Writer's Block Companion

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    That is the best way...let them spell it how they think it should be spelled, then check it with the dictionary. I tell them to underline it to remind them to go back and check the spelling. Otherwise, they will spend hours trying to figure out how to spell it correctly and lose their train of thought on what they are trying to express.
     
  27. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Nope, that's called teaching. I think you have it right.
     
  28. ELA 11 12

    ELA 11 12 Companion

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  29. runsw/scissors

    runsw/scissors Phenom

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    Invented spelling makes sense when you are talking about younger children writing, and by younger I mean first or second grade, words they may never have encountered with rules they may not have learned. But if older children are allowed to spell words the invented way they will become lazy and not take the time to do it correctly. I tell my students at the beginning of the year that spelling always counts in writing pieces, spelling and vocabulary assignments, and anytime they have the words in front of them for copying purposes. It takes some of them a while to realize I'm serious about this, but eventually they do.

    I think we can also blame parents to a certain extent. Not all of them mind you, but some of the helicopter variety. I had a mom write me a nasty note about her son's test grade (it was a B) because I took off points for misspellings. Apparently I was too hard on the kids and much too demanding. My grading was rather harsh. Anyway, I wrote her a not so subtle reply telling her that I have high expectations of my 5th graders, but that they are not unreasonable, among them are correct spelling and penmanship.
     
  30. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    It's meant to be a 'temporary' stage. If kids in K-2 were required to write using only words they knew how to spell, they wouldn't write very much.. invented spelling is a way for kids to use what they know about words to get their ideas down on paper. Through the editting process, spelling workshop, diligent word work and word study, this temporary stage passes...
     
  31. each1teach1

    each1teach1 Cohort

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    If you want to see some creative spelling, try teaching Spanish. Spanish is a phonetic spelling, meaning it's spelled the way it sounds, but my students are stuck on the English spelling system that has all kinds of hidden letters inside of words.

    Speak of which "Ayer" in Spanish means yesterday, so I was confused for a few seconds...
     
  32. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Writing and editing are two distinct stages. I'm cursed with very good spelling, so that happens not to have been a problem for me since I was about eight, but I've had to learn the hard way that if I insist on the perfect phrasing on the first draft, the first draft never gets completed and sometimes doesn't even get started.

    The trick is to emphasize that both stages are required.
     

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