This packet includes themed word pages and a cover page for student created journals. After hearing hundreds of “How do you spell…?” and observing a student who would often refer back to her older writing on how to spell certain words, I came up with this idea as a reference for my students.
When I first introduced this in my class I was shocked at how much my students loved it! It seemed to take much of the stress out of writing for many of them, their writing ventured into different areas, and improved in terms of quality. Instead of becoming frustrated trying to spell the word “butterfly” they were able to quickly reference how to spell it and then spent more time creating a higher quality sentence, such as adding details, “The butterfly flew from flower to flower.”
I worried that this reference could hinder our beloved “sound spelling,” but found that it did not. There are many words not included in this journal that still require sound spelling. It actually helped create more confident writers in my classroom. They also require reading skills, if a student wants to spell “butterfly” they must turn to the insect page and find a word that begins with /b/ and by process of elimination they are able to find the word they want.
I tell the students that this is their journal and let them write and draw in it as they wish. I have had boys and girls ask if they can take their Word Journals to recess and write in them! They really love them!
To make my word journals, I use a composition notebook. (They are really cheap when the Back-to-School sales are on.) Then each week, depending on our theme, we add a new page or two and talk about the words included on each page. There is plenty of space left around the edges for students to add words not listed, this is one place where sound spelling is included in the word journal. By the end of the year, students have a journal filled with many words they can continue to reference back to and has plenty of room for them to continue to add to as their writing progresses.
Some clipart from this packet was purchased from Scrappin’ Doodles at www.scrapindoodles.com.
Thank you so much for your purchase and I hope you enjoy this concept as much as I have!