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|Spelling Help For Adults|
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Many adults are embarrassed about their spelling ability. Some people simply were not taught spelling effectively. Adults who have learned English as a second language also tend to have difficulty spelling words with more than one syllable. Fortunately, there is free spelling help for adults available.
In the past, spelling has been taught as a separate subject by itself. Students were given a list of words at the beginning of the week and a spelling test at the end of the week. Practicing spelling used to involve writing the words over and over to learn through rote memorization.
Rote memorization has been proven many times to be the least effective way for a person to learn to spell. But there is now plenty of contemporary research on the best way people learn to spell.
Fender (2008) found that adults who have difficulty spelling generally have the most trouble with words that have more than one syllable. It has been suggested that adults with difficulty spelling try to focus on the individual parts of the word rather than the word as a whole. The words can be broken down into syllables based on how they are pronounced out loud. These syllables can then be studied.
The person practicing their spelling should focus on what sounds those letters make in that combination. Attention should be paid to what consonants and vowels come before or after that sound; this will help predict how the word is said. Spelling effectiveness is tied directly to reading efficiency, so improvement in one area causes improvement in the other.
Von Duyke also agrees that focus on phonics is the best way to learn spelling. By learning why sounds are spelled and pronounced in English, a person can learn to spell words he or she has never seen written. Very little of the English language is actually irregular, so learning the rules is actually quite beneficial.
There are many rules, but an interested learner can begin to internalize them as he or she becomes familiar with the different parts of the words. The individual syllables or parts of the words are called phonemes. Each of these parts spells a sound.
It is useful to begin a journal of misspelled words as well as chart of word parts. As a person records the correct spellings of the words they missed, they will begin to notice that many words are made up of the same parts.
Fender, M, 2008, 'Spelling Knowledge and Reading Development: Insights from Arab ESL Learners', Reading in a Foreign Language, vol 20, num 1, pp 19-42.
Von Duyke, K, 2003, 'Montessori Language Arts at Home', Practical Homeschooling, March- April, issue 52, p 35.