Grade: Middle
Subject: Language

#2650. Speedy Spelling Review

Language, level: Middle
Posted Sat Sep 14 08:01:23 PDT 2002 by Nancy Durrett (
Dubach High School, Dubach, Lincoln Parish, Louisiana
Materials Required: Spelling Words on Flash Cards; stop watch and time keeper
Concepts Taught: Spelling Review; Alphabetizing Review

Write spelling words on 3x5 index cards. Divide class into teams. Pass out one index card (face down) to each team member (don't look until "Go" is given). Each team must then perform two activities:
(1) In 15 seconds the team must put itself in alphabetical order (as they get better, I cut down to 10 seconds)-- one point is given for each team member in correct order.
(2) Eacj team member then challenges a member of an opposing team to speed spell the word (10 seconds to spell it, no restarts)-- one point given to challenged team if correct; point given to challenger's team if missed.

After we do steps 1 and 2 for two or three rounds, we have a "Speed Spell-Off". Each team chooses one member to represent the team. Teacher randomly chooses five or six words for each challenger. Challenger must speed spell each word (no restarts) -- one point for each word correctly spelled. Then the team that correctly spelled all the words in the shortest time receives 3 points.

I take great care to mix the teams so that no team has an unfair advantage. I also accumulate the spelling flash cards for several weeks and use this activity before a unit spelling test. The kids love it, but it can get rather loud with them shouting out their word and arranging themselves in alphabetical order. I use my inclusion students as time keepers and score keepers if they choose to not participate. Or I allow them to choose the correct word from two spelling examples I write on the board, rather than spelling the word out loud.