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spelling steps worksheet

There are lots of steps to remember when using the S.O.S. (Simultaneous Oral Spelling) method. Here’s one approach to adding some structure around the steps to help students move towards mastering the process. I had been working with one of my students for quite a while using this spelling method, and found that I … Continue reading >

S.O.S. Spelling Worksheet

hand movement for talking vowel

syllable hand movements

We teach students that a syllable is “a word, or a part of a word, with a talking vowel,” as well as hand movements to go along with it to help them remember. I have been working on this with one of my students during our sessions, but wanted him … Continue reading >

vowel team twister

Looking for a kinesthetic approach to practicing long vowels with vowel teams? I had been working with one of my students on “walking” vowel teams (two vowels go walking, the first one does the talking). He did fine with reading them, but when it came to saying “what spells” the long … Continue reading >

Practice vowel teams and long vowel spellings Twister style.

foam blocks

vowel sound colors

I wanted to help my students practice listening for the difference between long and short vowel sounds, as well as listening for nasal blends. Being aware of the vowel sound is an important component to correct spelling, and this exercise is great practice for vowel awareness. You will need colored … Continue reading >


Have you ever had a student who knew a-e-i-o-u and sometimes y, but couldn’t remember what they were called? When one of my student kept referring to them as “verbs”, I decided it was time to give him a visual reminder to help him remember what they were really called. … Continue reading >

Help students remember vowels with v-owls.

Silly Bull Spelling

Silly Bulls and Spelling

While it is important for students to be able to finger spell, I have found it helpful to have students use Silly Bulls to combine visual and tactile components in the spelling process. Check out the videos below for step-by-step instructions on how to do Silly Bull Spelling. More examples … Continue reading >

Silly Bulls and Introducing New Concepts 1

The Silly Bull Syllable Kit can be used during the introduction of new concept section of the lesson to help students discover sounds and attributes of the new concept. Auditory Discovery One of the first steps in introducing a new sound is to do Auditory Discovery. You read a short list of … Continue reading >

Silly Bull Parts Cards

Keep the Silly Bull parts out during review words.

Silly Bulls and Review Words

Keep those Silly Bull parts handy heading into the Review Words drill. When a student misses a word, you can ask them to “check the head” (or body or tail), or have them point to and tell you what each of the head, body and tail parts say. If they … Continue reading >

Silly Bull Syllable Type Cards

The Silly Bull Syllable Kit contains a set of picture cards and corresponding syllable type name card for each of the syllable types (closed, open, silent-e, vowel team, r-controlled and consonant-le). Here are some of the ways you can use these cards to help your student learn and use the … Continue reading >

Silly Bull Syllable Type Cards

Silly Bull in the blending drill

Silly Bulls and the Blending Drill

Silly Bulls provide a visual representation of how syllables are segmented into beginning, vowel and ending sounds. By using the Silly Bulls throughout the entire lesson, students can begin to understand that they are taking apart and putting back together the same parts for recognition and naming, blending, sounding out and spelling. For … Continue reading >