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Spelling or Legible Writing?

Posted by on Jul. 31, 2011 at 10:31 PM
  • 5 Replies

 My daughter is 6 years old and is super smart, but has the attention span of a goldfish lol
Yesterday she ask me to give her something to write about, so I told her to go write about our trip to the zoo. She said that she didn't know how to spell the names of the animals and I told her to just sound it out and it would be okay, we would work on the spelling afterwards.
Her phonetics is awesome, but she can't spell very well. Sky is spelled with an I for example. I don't have her little notebook with it, its upstairs in her room, so I will have to come back with more examples tomorrow. But my question is, what would you work on first, legibility of handwriting or spelling? And I ask because she starts off writing wonderfully and as her attention leaves her handwriting turns horrible. I am very patient with her and remind her that she needs to focus on making it neat and to put a finger space between each word. But she has a hard time keeping focus. Okay so another question is, how do I help her keep focus? HELP! :-)

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by on Jul. 31, 2011 at 10:31 PM
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by on Jul. 31, 2011 at 11:07 PM

 Did you kidnap my DD? I swear they sound exactly the same, which is your reassurance. Spelling non-sight words is not a huge deal...yet. The site words you should be picky about. Handwriting is key, just make sure other people can read it, letter turned the right directions ect. I am trying to have my DD write 1 sentence in relation to everything we do, so 2-3 a day. I go back and write the correct spelling under. We use handwriting paper so there is a 1/4 in margin I can write in. I really like the writing paper with half blank for a drawing! We are just starting 1st grade skills. I am just commenting alot like word spacing, punctuation, then correct spelling.

As for attention, check out a few books from library on ADHD and classroom accomodations-there will be good tips to help. And i'm NOT saying she has ADHD, there are some great tips in there. My DD is having that problem too. I am thinking about using a cheap small dry erase board (more like a sheet) to write her a checklist of task before she gets a break. For example: 2 math pages, writing, book, science then 20m break of choice. But I will still have to stay right on top of her for task completion. I try to by asking question like, was that math problem hard or what punctuation are you going to use. Just to keep her mind on the task. I do this will working with my son at the same table.

Mommy to Corbin (8-epilepsy,autism, add) Kayla (6) Collin (1.5), Wife to Ben-OT, and I love teaching- M.Ed Early Childhood. SAHM & Homeschooling. Come watch us at

by on Aug. 1, 2011 at 12:38 AM

All of that is VERY normalfor her age.

Ask any PS teacher! LOL

The spacing the spelling the good to bad handwriting, all normal.

At that age they often hold the pencil too tight and thier hand tires easily, so their hand writing starts slipping quickly.

Spacign issues are normal too. They just can't judge spacing. Totally normal.

And com on-if you sound it out-I says 'I' so ski can phonetically say 'sky'

I would maybe ask for shorter writing. I wouldn't focus on handwriting over spelling or spellign over handwriting. Work on both.

BTW-we LOVE all about spelling. Awesome program.


by on Aug. 1, 2011 at 11:21 AM

 you could do both, whatever she misspells use it for spelling words, extra handwriting practise! but with short lessons

and make the lessons shorter, even time them, i timed one of my dds for real short time(her attention was not long) and she kept asking for more time!

spelling out loud also might help, do you know her learning style??

yes short lesson for focus, and

and you being consistent to have her practise everyday will help, well it did for my dd with the short focus.

by on Aug. 1, 2011 at 11:43 AM

One thing I wouldn't do, is make the incorrect spelling a big deal.  It might take away her confidence and she won't even try anymore.  She's doing a good job of spelling, especially since you told her to sound it out. 

I think all those things sound normal. 


by on Aug. 2, 2011 at 9:51 AM

Sorry for taking so long to get back to ya'll.
I try not to put too much pressure on her, we just go with the flow really. Until we "officially" start school, we are just playing around. Somedays she wants to do math all day {or so it seems} and other days she wants to write stories. So I just follow what she wants to do at the moment. I just give her a topic to write on {like about going to the zoo} and tell her to give me at least 5 sentences. I really don't worry too much with the spelling. I do correct her spelling and tell her to try better next time.
I do not know her learning style, I am still trying to figure this all out LOL This is our first year homeschooling and we are going through Connections Academy, and we just recieved all the school books last week. I think that its going to be very helpful to her. I am excited and can't wait to start in two weeks! Honestly, as long as I can read what she has written down, I am not too concerned with the spelling. We can work on that as we go.
Thanks for the advice and I will definately be looking for tips on the ADHD and classroom environment.


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