Spin and Spell – Spelling Activity For Kids

” Mom how do you spell ______? ”  is that a common phrase at your house? Since my son has started reading more and more fluently he has been eager to spell words as well. The catch is he’s not the most enthusiastic writer. I want to fill that desire to spell without creating crazy stress over writing, this spelling activity does that. This is an easy way to make spelling into a puzzle and not a test.  If you are a long time reader you probably know I am a terrible speller and I so want my kids to love the challenge of spelling that I never had for fear of being wrong. Games and spelling activities like this are a great way to start.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some( many) letter stickers ( you can just write on the blocks, but I prefer to do something temporary), blocks, a spinner, animal stickers and time to sit down and play with your child. 
  2. Start by placing animal stickers on the spinner. I chose animals my son would be able to spell with encouragement. Which means a parent helping him sound out when he got stuck. Not quite all by himself, there needs to be some challenge. 
  3. Now add the letters. Spell each word yourself to make sure that you have them correct, remembering that some letters can be used for multiple words… it’s only a little tricky.
  4. Time to play. It’s simple, they spin the spinner then spell the word corresponding to the animal the spinner landed on.
  5. Spin and spell! My son kept landing on lion after a few I thought he’d get annoyed but instead he said ” I know this word L-I-O-N ”

Remember you can break this down for non-readers too by looking for the first sound, or for even younger children by providing a basket of toys with matching animals. Lots of options.

Spelling Puzzles

My son has been asking how to spell words for a while, he knows his letter sounds and while I am not planning on formally teaching him to read yet I do want to keep him interested and learning , as well as offering some challenge . This activity evolved as we played and is easy to adapt to various abilities. You could even skip spelling as use it as a match game for younger children!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a cardboard puzzle ours was from trick or treating , and markers in various colors. If you are doing this with school age or more proficient readers you can use one color, but for beginners or children needing less challenge the single color per word will help the process.
  2. Start by putting the puzzle together.
  3. Next divide it into smaller pieces for the words.
  4. Using one color per word , write the word one letter per piece on the back of the puzzle. Out of habit Icapitalized two of the words. When we put those together we talked about Uppercase letters and when we use them.
  5. Now to play! The way we did it for my son was to pick out all the letters in one color and place them on the tray.
  6. Next we tried to decide which letter came first. This frustrated my son, it was too much of a challenge. So I found the first letter and he was golden from there.
  7. Once the pieces are all together he sounded it out without prompting .
  1. This is when he figured it out!

Letters Of The Week

I am chilling with my little man.  I am waiting for the furnace repair man today after a weekend with wonderful women in Nashville and filling my head and heart with new information and friendships.  I didn’t want to leave anyone hanging so I have found wonderful  letter activities from a number of great blogs around the web. Most are geared towards older preschoolers and young school age kids but are all worth bookmarking for later even if your little one isn’t ready for them quite yet.

This is a fun way to use flash cards – see I don’t think they are inherently evil, they just need to be played with ! Muffin Tin Mom makes a fun game to help teach letters and promote early literacy.

This is from my other blog Craftivity Corner on FamilyEducation.com . We loved matching up the letters and stickers, and my 3 year old was adamant about doing it all by himself. The activity wasn’t too daunting or long but still offered a challenge.

This phonic flip chart from Quirky Momma is a fantastic way to play with letters with children who have started to show interest in spelling . When I went to the next blog I noticed they had linked this exact activity today as well. Hey when an idea is good it deserves recognition!

I had booked marked this word family activity from Preschool Playbook a while back . What a wonderful way to learn dynamically!

I love this idea from Hey, I’m just the nanny. For children who are past the basics and ready to play with sentences using a well loved book ( we all know which ones our kids know so so well) is a great way to scaffold this activity!

I had to include something for the little ones too. This Caterpillar C from Ramblings of a Crazy Woman is so cute I couldn’t resist!