Real Spellers

English Makes Sense!

Click HERE for this joint article by Deb Plotczik and myself. We put it together after Deb noticed some interesting questions working with the Real Spelling Tool Box 2. I hope readers will explore and share ideas in coments after this post! See the  first page of this 4 page document in screen shot below. (Note: Hot links only work on the downloaded pdf - not on the screen shot below). Aside from Deb's excellent piece, I share further illustrations of interrogting Real Spelling references incuding an old video from Real Spelling on the fascinating family of the words <create> and <creature> and the family of the <medi> family.

Screen Shot 2021 01 05 at 1.59.53 PM







Comments (2)

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Thank you Pete and Deb for this lovely story, which demonstrates one of the aspects of orthographic inquiry I adore, and a belief I try to convey to my own students - that learning is lifelong and knowledge never static. Reading or hearing the questions of others often reveals to me my own mistaken assumptions or misunderstandings and I loved Deb's description of "filtering" through her knowledge. The Real Spelling film is a delight and it reminded me that I tend to neglect the 4th question of SWI, about whether the graphemes function coherently within the boundaries of the elements; the neglect is based on my own lack of confidence and is something I need to remedy.

As for the inclusion of the prefix <-re> in the <medi> matrix, could I suggest the neologism "re-mediate", as in "We were unable to come to an agreement at the mediation, so we'll have to re-mediate next week"! It's a bit dodgy I know, but I do love how the simple inclusion of a hyphen can radically change the meaning of an expression. Thinking about this has made me realise that hyphens are another item I have ignored in my classroom and it could be an engaging activity for students to seek examples of ambiguity-resolving hyphens.

As always, much pleasurable work awaits me!

Allaana Bills
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I love your suggestion of introducing the "ambiguity-resolving hyphen" with "re-mediation." I use this kind of hyphen quite often in my own writing and I am delighted to have a name for it! I think this would start a wonderful class discussion.

Gail Venable
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