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Lynn Hellerstein
February 2011 Newsletter

Acing Spelling

SpellingDo you ever notice how some kids spell words accurately and some spell poorly? Look at the papers with misspellings. Most likely, you know what the word is because the student has spelled it phonetically; in other words, she spelled it the way she heard it—not the way she sees it.
Spelling problems may stem from a multitude of difficulties including:
  • Poor visual memory
  • Inadequate development of symbol imagery
  • Deficient sequencing skills
  • Lack of integration of imagery and language
  • Inappropriate utilization of visualization strategy
Does your child practice day after day at the kitchen table, verbally spelling her words accurately? Then she goes to school and bombs the spelling test?  She may see the words in her mind and accurately spell them out loud, but then she seems to lose the words when she writes them. This is not uncommon.
Some kids have visual motor (eye-hand) problems.  When they go to write the word, they often use a different strategy and write the way they hear the word, not see the word.  They have the spelling of the word in isolation but really don’t have a picture of what that word looks like in their head.
What can you do if your child needs some help in spelling and how do you do it?
It is very important to make sure that your child studies spelling using motor and movement skills. Don’t make it a chore. Just make sure there is some type of motor response practiced. 
That is why I refer to the spelling strategy as see it-write it. Initially, it may seem to take time to go through all the steps with each spelling word.  As soon as your child gets the process, then it becomes automatic. Practice until it becomes a habit.
This Activity a great way for your child to learn to spell! Click here to download the Spelling Activity from See It. Say It. Do It!

Next month newsletter: Great tips on helping your child do his homework. Avoid the homework battle!

Feel free to send questions, comments or insights on your journey of transformation.

With love and gratitude,

Lynn Fishman Hellerstein, O.D., FCOVD, FAAO

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Dr. Lynn F. Hellerstein
7180 E Orchard Road, Suite 103
Centennial, CO 80112

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