Topic | Poor Spelling Habits

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  • Michelle Brumgard

    My 9.5 year old daughter doesn’t seem to be improving in her spelling at all, in reviewing this past year. Today, she asked me how to spell room. Honestly, I think the word grouping she did in K and 1st in a charter school confused her more then helped her. We did not do Hymns in Prose this year and I’m wondering if I should do it next year, seeing it does word grouping. Would it be beneficial to help with spelling? She definitely doesn’t need it for reading.

    We just finished Spelling Wisdom and Using Language Well exercise/lesson 62. I love the gentle layout of these two books! In the beginning of the year, prior to discovering ULW, I had her copying the SW exercise on day 1, writing out words she didn’t know how to spell on day 2 3-5 times, and then dictated those words to her on day 3. Once I discovered ULW, we started over and followed the two books together. I’m thinking I am not asking her sufficiently about spelling words since we added ULW.

    How does spelling proficiency look with SW and ULW together? How can I help her with spelling? With that in mind, I plan to add typing next year – if you know a program that helps teach typing AND spelling, please let me know!


    I can’t address the specific use of SW and ULW but I can address the use of dictation for spelling. My son is a natural speller. He won spelling bees and always had an intuitive grasp of spelling. We didn’t do hardly any spelling curriculum with him and I was very lax in dictation as well. He is still a good speller.

    My daughter came along and, though she became an avid reader at a young age, she was definitely not a natural speller. I worried a lot. I tried a few spelling programs but they didn’t help. I finally came back to dictation and after a year of consistent dictation, my daughter’s spelling improved dramatically and it just keeps getting better as we continue implementing dictation in our homeschool.

    My daughter was 10 or 11 when her spelling really started to improve. She began to want to improve her spelling and that made a huge difference as well. As Charlotte Mason said, there is no true education except self education. Until the child decides he/she really wants to spell well, their may not be much improvement. I think this usually takes place some time in the preteen years when they begin to care a bit more about what others think.

    One of the biggest things I have learned homeschooling my children is not to worry too much when they are little and haven’t yet grasped a concept or shown much improvement in an area. All of those little kinks seem to work themselves out in the preteen and middle school years when the students begin to make the transition from child to young adult. We moms just need to stay calm, patient, and consistent and we truly will see the fruit as our children grow older.



    Michelle Brumgard

    Thank you for the encouragement. We haven’t begun dictation yet, with her being 9.5. I plan to slowly move into dictation with the SW next year. This just encourages me to stay on track with what we are doing. Thank you!!


    What is this SW and ULW your are talking about?


    Is the video where Sonya explains dictation on the SW store page? If not, could someone provide a link? I’ve been thinking about it   (because we need it!) and this may be a good thread to put it on.


    Karen Smith

    Kim, SW and ULW refer to Spelling Wisdom and Using Language Well. Spelling Wisdom is a set of books that have prepared dictation exercises already chosen for you to use for spelling. Using Language Well is a set of books that are used alongside Spelling Wisdom to teach grammar, English usage, and composition skills.

    Michelle, the prepared dictation demonstration video is on the Spelling Wisdom product page (scroll down) and on the video page (scroll down) in the Learning Library.

Viewing 6 posts - 1 through 6 (of 6 total)
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