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Writing And Correcting Mistakes


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Hi all

alot of my children are now beginning to write - i have 2 who like to write independently, some who like me to dictate things to them to write and some who are just happy to mark make and put meaning to it. My question is about those who are writing - when hey are sounding out words for example house they will ask me how to spell it - i tell them to sound it out and writie the sounds they can hear so they then say to me hws is that right? at the moment i am saying 'if there the sounds you can hear then write them down - well done. When we then read through the work together i will correct one or two spelling mistakes - i dont want to correct them all as i am really worried about damaging their confidence - However how long do i let them go on spelling things wrongly? if i correct every mistake with them they will become disheartended but then i dont want to teach them wrong if you understnad my meaning?

Sorry if this is confusing just wondered what others do?

 

Thanks

 

Lola

 

Merry Christmas

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i encourage have go writing and encourage children to say the sounds in each word and count them and then write the letters for each sound , some of my children are writing cvc words and the correctly. but like you a lot of my children want me to write it correctly for them to copy. letters and sounds helps with spelling although it as yet not transfering into their writing , this probably doesn't help very much but thought i would reply maybe other people will be more helpful

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hi all

alot of my children are now beginning to write - i have 2 who like to write independently, some who like me to dictate things to them to write and some who are just happy to mark make and put meaning to it. My question is about those who are writing - when hey are sounding out words for example house they will ask me how to spell it - i tell them to sound it out and writie the sounds they can hear so they then say to me hws is that right? at the moment i am saying 'if there the sounds you can hear then write them down - well done. When we then read through the work together i will correct one or two spelling mistakes - i dont want to correct them all as i am really worried about damaging their confidence - However how long do i let them go on spelling things wrongly? if i correct every mistake with them they will become disheartended but then i dont want to teach them wrong if you understnad my meaning?

Sorry if this is confusing just wondered what others do?

 

Thanks

 

Lola

 

Merry Christmas

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I'm dying to hear the answers to these questions Lola! This is such a tricky area - as you say you really are in danger of damaging children's self esteem and their views of themselves as competent writers if you continually point out their mistakes.

 

I'm doing a research project on the thorny issue of worksheets in pre-school and as part of that I'm doing some background reading on teaching children to write. One thing that did stick in my head was someone (somewhere) saying that it was important to make children understand that the content of what they write is every bit as important as getting the spelling correct.

 

I'm guessing there is no right or wrong answer to your questions Lola - I'd be willing to wager one of my Christmas chocolates (as yet unopened) that this will come down to personal philosophy, principle and experience of what works in a variety of contexts, and for individual children.

 

But of course I could be wrong - in which case we'll know just what to do from now on... :o

 

Maz

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While not wanting to damage confidence if I have introduced or know the child knows a phoneme/blend but not put it into practise I will point it out intially verbally.However if its repeated I may write the correction (with the child) or dictate a word/sentence where I can point out the mistake and correct it as the child writes hopefully without undermining the intial piece of work.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I think what you are doing is spot on.

Does it matter if the spelling is wrong at this age? I dont think so. I hate it when children are worried by the spelling rather than the content.

If a child spelt house - "hws" I would be delighted.

But as always we need to move them on so perhaps you could share a story with the word house and talk about how the "o" "u" make an "ow" sound. Can you find any other words with the "ou" sound in it?

You will then find that they spell all words with the "ou" spelling (cou / cow) but this is their terrific learning isnt it?

hope this helps.

x

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I think what you are doing is spot on.

Does it matter if the spelling is wrong at this age? I dont think so. I hate it when children are worried by the spelling rather than the content.

If a child spelt house - "hws" I would be delighted.

But as always we need to move them on so perhaps you could share a story with the word house and talk about how the "o" "u" make an "ow" sound. Can you find any other words with the "ou" sound in it?

You will then find that they spell all words with the "ou" spelling (cou / cow) but this is their terrific learning isnt it?

hope this helps.

x

Welcome to the Forum, Roxanne

 

What a great explanation of children's 'terrific learning'!

 

Maz

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Hello and welcome to the forum Roxanne.

 

In reply to Lola's initial post:-

I think that children's confidence can take a battering if they are constantly corrected in their spelling. However, how long do we not over-correct?

My daughter is 11 and her spelling is very poor. When attending parent evenings over the years I would get the chance to look over her work books (usually kept at school) and found her wrong spellings never corrected. When I asked her teachers why this was I was told that if the child's spellings were phonically correct the teachers would not correct them. Consequently, my daughter spells 'scarf' as skarfe' and 'build' as 'bild' etc.

The reason given by the teachers was that her confidence would be damaged if her work was constantly returned with corrections.

Over the years I have always thought this to be wrong but each teacher I challanged would point out that non-correction was a valid reason and could be found in the national curriculum guidelines.

 

I feel I have let her down by not being more insistant. She writes beautiful poetry and I really have to try very hard to see past her wrong spellings to appreciate what she has written.

 

So how long to we let very young children spell words incorrectly without correction?...........I don't know. I am not a teacher, but as a parent, and if I had the time all over again, I would insist on my child's work being corrected in a sensitive way, showing her the correct spelling.

If a child does not know something is wrong then how can they fix it!

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So how long to we let very young children spell words incorrectly without correction?...........I don't know. I am not a teacher, but as a parent, and if I had the time all over again, I would insist on my child's work being corrected in a sensitive way, showing her the correct spelling.

If a child does not know something is wrong then how can they fix it!

I guess we need to find the equivalent to the way we correct a child's speech - ie by repeating the correct word back to them without highlighting their mistake.

 

Not sure how we'd do that in writing though!

 

Maz

 

PS Probably by the time your daughter gets to university we'll all be talking in text speak anyway :o

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In my opinion, children's spelling at reception should not be corrected, as any attempt to write phonetically (after all that is what we are teaching them) is what we are expecting isn't it? We are asking them to 'sound out' constantly, so when they do, we correct them????

 

I can understand how worried you'd be if this practice continues throughout their school career ... but at Reception ... most definitely.

 

Surely through reading their spelling will improve?

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Surely through reading their spelling will improve?

 

I wish this was true but my child is the most avid reader with terrible spelling.She wasn't corrected nor taught phonics and I tried not to interfere being 'in the job' but now wish I had.I queried dyslexia by year 5 but after testing she's not.

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I took the stages from a book called Planning the Primary School Curriculum published by Featherstones Really Good Stuff range.

Thanks Marion! I like to reference everything I can when providing information - sometimes I wonder if people think I make stuff up!

 

Maz

 

PS - just what I was looking for - a good reason to visit the Amazon site!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi there. Just thought I would let you know how we approach this in our school.

 

We use the THRASS method of synthetic phonics.

 

We have a large chart in each class which has a box for each of the phonemes you can hear in words and displays the possible grapheme choices, with a picture representation for each one. We also have lots of small versions of the chart available for the children.

 

For example in the 'oy' box there is a picture of a toy and a coin, with the choices oy and oi.

 

When a child is try writing and hears a sound they want to represent, then they can look at the corresponding sound box and choose a grapheme. It may not always be the correct one, but gradually they begin to know which looks right. The charts are used throughout the school.

 

In reception we start to learn the 'geography' of the chart and what all the pictures are. They quickly recognise a digraph when they see one, and they have small charts in front of them when try writing wherever they are, e.g. in the role play area.

 

When they are first in school they learn what they look after on the chart, for example Charlotte looks after the chef, whilst Chloe looks after the school. It sounds complicated but we find it works so well as it is multi sensory, fun and goes right through the school.

 

This all links in really well with the letters and sounds materials.

 

Therefore, when children spell a word incorrectly, I can praise them for hearing the correct sound, and refer them to the correct grapheme choice on the THRASS chart. Of course we don't pick up on all mistakes right from the start, but it is a gradual skill building process.

 

Hope you are not yawning too much now!!

 

Ann

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Hi Lola

When i have children who are feeling confident to write independently i encourage them to sound out (or I now say use your sound-talk) I only correct the spelling of key/tricky words because it can become habitual later such as wus etc. Also we are using the letters and sounds programme and so we are teaching the children to read and spell these words from the beginning.

Any other spellings I will use in a retorical written question at the end such as What does your house look like? Then the children can see the correct spelling but in context and not as a correction of their hard work. I don't want to make them feel like a failure when at the same time I am telling them to have a go! Later I use these retorical written questions to extend my HA writers. (It also gives the parents an indication of what their child has written!!)

 

The sound-talk is working a dream in my class as they instantly know what I mean when I say it, rather than them thinking it is something abstract.

Hope this helps

Munch

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