English spelling can be tricky. The odd-looking words that add prefixes and suffixes to root words are called “complex” or “irregular” spellings. They challenge learners of all ages and abilities — native speakers included! Readers who struggle with English spelling usually have one of two problems: Either they’re confused by the various ways a word might be pronounced, much less spelt, or they have trouble recognizing those different pronunciations in the first place. The Schonell spelling test is an excellent tool for identifying these issues early on.
It’s based on the principles of synthetic phonics, which teaches students how to break down words into their parts so that they can better recognize and spell them in future. Let’s look at why you should use this spelling test with your kids, along with some ideas for making it more fun than traditional diagnostic tests tend to be!
What’s a Schonell Spelling Test?
A Schonell spelling test is a word list designed to assess students’ ability to recognize the different ways a word might be pronounced or spelt. The test is based on the principles of synthetic phonics, which teaches students how to break down words into smaller chunks, making them easier to remember. The test format may vary slightly depending on your chosen spelling practice. Still, you’ll usually find a list of words, each with a blank underneath. Your child is then asked to write down how they think the word is spelt and how it might be pronounced. The words themselves can vary in difficulty. You might find that some are easier than others, while some may be more challenging.
Why Kids Should Take a Schonell Spelling Test
Let’s first look at why kids should take a Schonell spelling test in the first place. After all, it’s not an exam every kid needs to pass. If your child struggles to master spelling, it can affect their writing confidence, making it more difficult to put pen to paper. And that’s not even the worst-case scenario! Students who are still regularly misspelling even the most basic words can find it challenging to understand what they read, which can cause all sorts of problems, both academic and social.
Kids who don’t have a solid vocabulary to call on are also less likely to be able to express themselves well. It’s never too early to assess your child’s spelling ability, which is why the Schonell spelling test is an excellent tool for kids of all ages.
How to Use the Schonell Spelling Test With Your Kids
It’s almost impossible to take a Schonell spelling test and not remember the words you’ve been asked to learn! You can try a few things with your child to make the experience a little more enjoyable.
Tips for Making the Schonell Spelling Test More Fun
Since the Schonell spelling test assesses your child’s spelling ability, keeping the mood positive is important. Try to keep things from getting overly competitive, focusing instead on improvement. If your child does struggle with certain words, don’t worry about treating them as failures.
Why Are Spelling Tests So Important?
As we’ve discussed, a Schonell spelling test gives you an idea of your child’s current ability to spell. Still, it can also help you understand where any gaps in their knowledge are. You can use this information to guide your child’s learning moving forward. Let’s say your child struggles with words that end in “-tion,” but you’ve noticed that they have no trouble with “-sion.” This indicates that your child doesn’t recognize the difference in the pronunciations of the different endings. While it can be easy to overlook spelling errors when reading, it’s also essential to try to catch them in handwritten work.
By regularly testing the spelling of your child’s written work, you can help them to identify and correct their errors, moving them one step closer to mastery.
3 Benefits of Using the Schonell Spelling Test
The Schonell spelling test can help you to identify the areas in which your child needs the most help. You can use this information to help your child improve their spelling skills. In addition, you can use the spelling test results to help create a customized learning path for your child. You can use the spelling test as a gauge for where your child is at in terms of spelling and what they need to work on next. Finally, you can use the Schonell spelling test to help your child build confidence in their abilities.
By helping your child to identify their strengths and weaknesses, you can help them to set realistic goals for themselves and gain the motivation they need to reach them.
English spelling is a tricky subject, and it can be difficult to see improvement in young readers who are still struggling to master it. A Schonell spelling test can help you to identify the areas in which your child needs the most help, allowing you to help them to improve their spelling skills. You can also use the spelling test results to help you create a customized learning path for your child, helping them set realistic goals based on their strengths and weaknesses. Finally, you can use the spelling test to help your child build their confidence in their abilities, enabling them to gain the motivation they need to reach their goals.