Analyse spelling errors

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1 Analyse spelling errors

2 Why the strategy is important Children with a history of chronic conductive hearing loss have difficulty in developing accurate representations of sounds and words. The effects of these difficulties can be seen in the spelling errors children make. A number of common patterns of error can be identified. These patterns should be explicitly addressed through the use of teaching approaches which focus on repairing and re-educating the child s phonological awareness for each sound. Taking the time to look carefully at each child s work in order to identify consistent patterns of error will allow you to plan teaching which will address the individual needs of the child. Common patterns of spelling error made by children with chronic conductive hearing loss Developmental immaturities in sound development and phonological awareness Children with chronic conductive hearing loss often have trouble learning to pronounce some sounds. By the time they begin school, the speech of these children may show only minor problems but underlying problems may still exist in discriminating and manipulating these sounds in spelling and reading. This means they have poor phonological awareness for these sounds. Problem sounds Some sounds cause particular difficulty for children with a history of conductive hearing loss, and there are also English sounds which are difficult for children whose first language is an Indigenous language or dialect. These sounds have been discussed in detail in Strategy 4. To remind you, the groups of sounds which are likely to cause difficulty are: 1. voiced/voiceless sounds. These are the pairs of sounds which differ only in whether or not the vocal cords are vibrating. They are: /p/ /b/; /t/ /d/; /k/ /g/; /f/ - /v/; /th/ (as in thin) /th/ (as in that); /s/ /z/; /ch/ /j/. Intervention Strategies 2. fricatives. These are sounds which are made with a continuous, vibrating air stream. The sounds are: /f/ - /v/; /th/ (as in thin) /th/ (as in that); /s/ /z/; /h/;/ sh/. They are difficult for many Aboriginal children because indigenous languages don t use these sounds. Learning to produce them means that children have to learn a completely new set of sounds. These are also sounds which are particularly difficult to hear when hearing is affected by a conductive hearing loss. You will notice that these sounds are also included in the voiced-voiceless sounds list, so it is clear that there are a number of reasons why they are particularly difficult for Aboriginal children. The sound /h/ is an interesting case in Kriol and Aboriginal English /h/ doesn t appear on some words where speakers of Standard Australian English would expect to hear it (e.g. orse for horse ), but may appear on words which, for Standard Australian English speaker, begin with a vowel (e.g. happle for apple ).

3 Vowels Indigenous children have difficulty in spelling the vowels of English for a number of reasons. Indigenous languages include three main vowels, but Standard Australian English, Kriol and Aboriginal English have many more vowels. In addition to this, vowel length (whether the vowel is long or short) does not change meaning in most Aboriginal languages, but is very important in English particularly in coding or writing. Generally speaking, the differences between vowels are slight. Discriminating these slight differences is likely to be very difficult for children with a history of chronic conductive hearing loss. The following types of spelling errors may be present. 1. use of a short vowel in place of a long vowel. [ Note that what sometimes appears to be the use of a short vowel in place of a long vowel (e.g. plad for played ) may, in fact, indicate poor knowledge of spelling conventions. In this case, the spelling error may be due to the child using the letter name to represent the sound. ] 2. omission of vowels; and 3. inaccurate vowel representation. This is most likely to affect the vowels which are similar in Standard Australian English, but which don t occur in Indigenous languages. This includes pairs such as /i/ ( hit ) - /e/ ( bed ); /a/ ( cap ) - /u/ ( cup ). Omissions Children with a history of conductive hearing loss may find it difficult to hear parts of words. This difficulty will affect those parts of words which are less obvious, or produced with less emphasis than other parts of the word. In spelling, this will be reflected in a tendency to omit some parts of words. You can expect to see the effects in omission of: 1. unstressed syllables the syllables in multisyllabic words which have least emphasis (eg, the first syllable in banana, the second syllable in dinosaur ); 2. sounds in clusters (blends) one consonant in a group of consonants (eg. the /s/ in stop ); and 3. word end consonants the last consonant in a word (eg the /g/ in dog ). Poor knowledge of relationships between sounds and letters Poor phonological awareness skills are associated with a history of conductive hearing loss. This makes it difficult for children to develop understanding of the relationships between sounds and letters. In spelling, this will be reflected in spelling attempts which do not represent each sound in the word (e.g. spelling attempts may not include the vowel, or may not include a representation of all the consonant sounds in the word). Analyse spelling errors

4 Poor knowledge of spelling conventions Alphabetic scripts (such as that used in spelling Standard Australian English, Aboriginal languages, dialect or Kriol) represent sounds using letters and combinations of letters in conventional ways. In order to become skilled spellers in whichever language they are encoding, children need to develop an understanding of the conventions used in that code. Lack of knowledge of these conventions will result in the child making incorrect spelling choices to represent particular sounds. In an attempt to cope with the complexities of spelling, children with a history of chronic conductive hearing loss may develop an over-reliance on visual coding. That is, they may depend on remembering what the word looks like in order to spell it. The success of this strategy is limited by memory, and by the need to make finer and finer distinctions between visual patterns. When the reading and spelling vocabulary is small, reliance on visual coding is possible forms such as cat and dog can be distinguished on the basis of their shape alone. However, as the vocabulary increases, visual discrimination becomes more difficult forms such as bog and dog are, in visual terms, more similar than different. Explicit teaching of the sound structure of words; the way this relates to writing; and the spelling conventions appropriate to the language which is to be encoded will reduce this reliance on visual coding. Intervention Strategies

5 A framework for analysis and teaching Careful analysis of spelling errors evident in children s work may reveal patterns of error. It is important that you look for frequently occurring error types, not single instances of error. Be aware also that more than one error pattern may be evident in a single word. For example, a child who writes sep for sleep demonstrates two error patterns the omission of a consonant from a consonant cluster, and poor knowledge of spelling conventions. The common error patterns will provide you with a basis for your teaching, at either a small group (if a number of children show the same pattern) or individual level. The common error patterns, examples of these, and suggested actions are shown below. You will notice that the suggested activities focus on developing knowledge of, and the ability to produce the sounds themselves, and on explicitly linking those sounds to the written system. That is, the ideas and types of activities we have discussed in Strategy 4 and Strategy 5. You will find many activities which could be used in Strategies 4 and 5 - and you are encouraged to develop more! Analyse spelling errors

6 Developmental immaturities in sound development and phonological awareness /t/ substituted for /k/ pat for pack /s/ substituted for /sh/ sell for shell /d/ substituted for /th/ dat for that /f/ substituted for /th/ frot for throat /l/ substituted for /y/ yeg for reg /w/ substituted for /r/ wet for red Production Clarify production, focus on developing understanding of the way the sound is produced (e.g. t = tongue tip on upper teeth ridge). Use cues outlined in Sound Production, Strategy 4. Practice Practice accurate production of sounds: Use rapid naming cards. Make cards with the target sound at the beginning, end and in the middle of words. Generate word lists for oral word drills. Discrimination Develop children s ability to discriminate target sounds in words. Make up lists of words with the target sound in all word positions (ie beginning, end, middle). Children can hold up a sound card or run to a nominated spot when they hear the target sound. Use magnetic letters to spell out nonsense words sounded out by the teacher e.g. lak; mep. Make sure you include the target sound. Code Use the magnetic letters or letter cards to spell out nonsense words, repair and reflect on errors. Children identify words in magazines (National Geographic are really useful) that have the target sound at the beginning, end, middle of the word. Then have them sound the word out providing assistance with difficult patterns. Use naturally occurring opportunities to talk about spelling conventions for example, if looking for words beginning with the sound / sh/, children will need to look for the letter combination sh. Using oral word drill list, sound words out and have the children negotiate spelling for each word. Use a large piece of butchers paper. Children may take a turn or one child may scribe for the group. Intervention Strategies

7 Problem sounds /d/ substituted for /th/ bruda for brother /f/ substituted for /th/ frot for throat /s/ substituted for /sh/ sop for shop /s/ substituted for /ch/ luns for lunch /d/ substituted for /t/ hid for hit /g/ substituted for /k/ digl for tickle /b/ substituted for /p/ berbl for purple /h/ omitted or added orse for horse hapl for apple Follow the same sequence of actions for errors involving any of these problem sounds. You must first identify the target sound, and the way the child is representing the sound, then focus on: Production Clarify production of the target sound. Develop knowledge of placement of tongue and lips, the way the airstream is used and whether or not the vocal cords are vibrating. Use cues outlined in Consonant Production, Strategy 4. Practice word lists, oral repetition and rapid naming of pictures or objects. For all activities, remember to include the target sound at the beginning of words, at the end of words and in the middle of words. Contrast Practise saying word pairs which contrast the target sound with the child s error sound, or with similar sounds. For example, for the child who is omitting the sound / h/, practice target words with and without the /h/ sound (eg, contrast hat and at ). When working with voiced / voiceless pairs, teach cues to indicate voiced (fingers on voicebox) and voiceless (hand in front of mouth to feel air). Children should alternate production of voiced / voiceless sounds and word pairs. This will be easiest with sounds which can be drawn out (/th/ (thin) /th/ (that); /f/ - /v/; /s/ - /z/). Discriminate develop a list of words with the target sound in the initial position, and a list which includes these words, and distracter words (which begin with a different sound). Read the list aloud, and challenge children to put up their hands when they hear a word with the target sound. (Continued overleaf) Analyse spelling errors

8 Problem sounds /d/ substituted for /th/ bruda for brother /f/ substituted for /th/ frot for throat /s/ substituted for /sh/ sop for shop /s/ substituted for /ch/ luns for lunch /d/ substituted for /t/ hid for hit /g/ substituted for /k/ digl for tickle /b/ substituted for /p/ berbl for purple /h/ omitted or added orse for horse hapl for apple (Continued from previous page) Code Discuss ways the target sound is represented in print (eg the sound /k/ may be represented using the letters c, k, ck ). Children look through print books to find words that contain the letters discussed. Take advantage of naturally occurring opportunities to talk about spelling exceptions (for example, when the letter c represents the sound /s/ as is the case for the word circus ), or the use of letters in digraphs (as is the case for the letter h in ch, sh, th ). Think of as many words beginning with the target sound as you can, or use a dictionary to find new and unusual words. Generate a list which the children practice saying, segmenting and writing. Negotiate the spelling of these words as a group around one large piece of butchers paper. Intervention Strategies

9 Vowels bat for about cll for kill rafest for roughest fan for fun peg for pig sad for said Production Clarify production of vowels. Develop knowledge of placement of tongue and lips. Say the sound by itself, and in short words. Use cues and information outlined in Vowel Production, Strategy 4. Practice Use word lists, oral repetition and rapid naming of pictures or objects. Vowel sounds are most common within words, but you should also include words which have the target vowel at the beginning and at the end where possible. Rhyming words will contain the same vowel sound - generate a list of words that sound the same or make up nonsense words or rhymes for children to practise saying. Read rhyming books. (Dr Suess books are great!) Contrast Practise saying word pairs which contrast similar vowels (eg bat bet ; sit set ; hit heat ). Use pictures or drawings, and ask the children name the picture you point to. Use one pair at a time. Discriminate From your rapid naming pack, choose pictures of pairs of words which are different only because of the vowel (eg pip pipe ; tap top ; cap cup ). Using one pair at a time, ask the children to point to the word you say. Vary the game by blu-tacking cards to different windows and asking the children to stand next to the one you say. Code Develop a list of words which include problem vowels. Children practice saying, segmenting and writing these words. Take advantage of naturally occurring opportunities to talk about different ways of representing the same vowel sounds. Analyse spelling errors

10 Omissions bat for about sep for sleep do for dog Determine which part of the word has been omitted, and choose your starting action: If an unstressed syllable has been deleted then practice breaking words into syllables. If one member of a consonant cluster has been deleted then practice saying the words with consonant clusters very slowly, being careful to produce each sound clearly. If an end consonant has been deleted then contrast words with and without end consonants (e.g. go goat ; pie pipe ; how house ). Code Develop lists of words which have more than one syllable, consonant clusters (blends) or end consonants. Work with children to say, segment and write the words, making sure that each syllable and each sound is represented. If working with multisyllabic words, segment syllables first, then sounds within each syllable. You could represent these parts separately on your paper or the blackboard. For example, you could represent syllables using boxes. then put divisions within the boxes to represent the number of sounds write in the letters needed. a b ou t Finally, write the word as it would appear on the page. about Take naturally occurring opportunities to talk about unfamiliar or unusual spelling choices. Intervention Strategies

11 Poor knowledge of relationship between sounds and letters. cll for kill peg for pig sad for said pesos for pieces plad for played rafest for roughest These error patterns are addressed through a focus on segmenting sounds in words, and linking the sounds explicitly to their representations the letters used to spell them in particular words. This explicit knowledge is directly targeted in the Code section discussed under each of the previous error patterns. Extend knowledge of spelling conventions by collecting lists of words that use the same letter combinations to represent the same sounds. Don t be tricked by spelling patterns though, make sure you focus on the sounds. For example, if working with tough, do include rough and enough, but not cough, through or brought Remember... to focus on spelling knowledge as well as error patterns. The examples used in this section show considerable evidence of spelling knowledge. What strengths can you identify? Analyse spelling errors

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