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Spelling Techniques for the Physically Active Child

Here are some ideas for helping your physically active youngster learn to spell more accurately.

• First, have him spell words out loud, while jumping up every time a vowel is spoken. For example, to spell the word rocket, he’d sit on the “r,” jump up on the “o,” sit on the “c” and “k,” jump up on the “e,” and sit on the “t.” He can also invent his own physical activities to do whenever saying a vowel, such as doing a jumping jack, doing a somersault, turning around 360° and so forth.

• Go out to a large concrete area, such as a playground or driveway, and write spelling words so that they’re several feet high and several feet long. Then ask him to walk his spelling words, actually following the path of the chalk lines from letter to letter, saying the letters as he walks. He can also run them or hop them or do some other physical activity as well.

• Finally, give him a squirt gun and go back to the drive way and have him squirt the spelling words on to the surface, referring to a printed list if necessary. In each of these ways, he can use his physical energy to learn an academic skill.

Thomas Armstrong, Ph.D. is an award-winning author and speaker with twenty-eight years of teaching experience from the primary through the doctoral level, and over one million copies of his books in print on issues related to learning and human development. He is the author of nine books including Multiple Intelligences in the Classroom, In Their Own Way, Awakening Your Child’s Natural Genius, 7 Kinds of Smart, The Myth of the A.D.D. Child, ADD/ADHD Alternatives in the Classroom, and Awakening Genius in the Classroom. His books have been translated into sixteen languages, including Spanish, Chinese, Hebrew, Danish, and Russian.


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