Monday, February 23, 2009


Dicey Spellıng

Dyslexic children find it difficult to learn spellings.Dicey spelling is a useful technique to try out.It works on the idea that after the spelling has been looked at and thought about, another activity is used to occupy the short term memory but which will also involve the use of the spelling. This means that the brain will internalize it in the LONG TERM MEMORY, not just ‘dump’ the spelling because it doesn’t need it any more.

When children play the game at the beginning you can often find them saying,“What was that word again?” This shows just how quickly the brain removes information it considers irrelevant. After a few attempts at the game, pupils begin to remember better.

Because this game involves recalling memories and is repetitive and fun,this will develop the pupils experiences of memory recall. Use a small number of words only (maybe 6) and play the list through at least twice at each session.

How to play:
Write the words on individual cards.
Study the word.
Remove the word.

Throw the dice. The number you get decides which of the tasks you do.
1. write word with eyes shut
2. write word with opposite hand
3. spell word aloud backwards
4. write word in bubble writing
5. write each letter in different colour
6. write a word with a similar meaning.
(Change these numbers/task around when they become too familiar.Add different tasks)

The game can be adapted in many ways. You can use it to learn subject vocabulary and key terminology .You could use it to teach maths facts eg number bonds ( 8+2 .,7+ 3 , 6 + 4) or multiplication.etc.

This idea came from Sally Raymond.She is a qualified teacher of dyslexic children. Dicey Spellings comes from her book 'Dragonfly Games : Supporting and Developing Dyslexic Learning 7-14 David Fulton.

She runs local groups and a website for dyslexic children and their parents.Sally has written a book called Helping Children Cope with Dyslexia (2nd Ed.) Sheldon Press ISBN: 978-0-85969-875-7

Both books can be obtained from

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