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St Teresa's Catholic Primary School

St Teresa's Catholic Primary School

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Spelling

Learning to spell is a complex business and educationalists are often divided on how best to teach children to spell. However, recent research indicates that children do not learn spellings by simply using rote visual memory. Instead, their ability to spell is dependent on their growing understanding of spoken and written word structure. It is crucial that these word structures and spelling patterns are explicitly taught to children, rather than sending a list of words home on a Monday to be learnt and tested on a Friday.  Some children learn to spell using this method, but many do not. Children who struggle with their spellings will never succeed if they are constantly tested in this manner.  Although repetition is important, simply copying a word a number of times will not, on its own, help children to recall the spellings.   We therefore employ activities, some in the form of games, that allow children to practice the spelling patterns they have been taught.  The spelling patterns are repeated over four weeks to allow children enough time to assimilate spellings into the long term memory.  As the more practice children have, the better the retention, support at home is welcomed and encouraged.