Dear Teacher: How Can I Boost My Child’s Spelling Skills?

Try these simple strategies to help your child strengthen her spelling abilities and study skills

Dear TeacherQuestion: My fourth-grader has problems remembering how to spell words even after passing the weekly spelling test. She loves working on the computer. Are there any programs that might help improve her spelling skills? —No Speller

Answer: We hope that your daughter is preparing for the weekly spelling test by you giving her a pre-test after she gets the words and again before the test day. She should be self-correcting these tests and writing any incorrectly spelled words correctly. The more times she writes a spelling word correctly, the more likely she will remember how to spell it. Another reason that children often have trouble remembering how to spell words that they have aced on the weekly spelling test is a failure to see these words in print a great number of times.

There are quite a few free computer spelling programs. They can be used before the weekly spelling test as well as after the test to help fix the words in children’s memories. Playing some of the online spelling games with words from recent spelling tests is likely to reinforce the correct spelling of test words. Some of these games are really fun to play and can help children become better spellers.

You can search online for websites that let children play spelling games and have programs to teach the weekly spelling words. Look over the many options with your daughter until she finds one or more that she likes. Two spelling websites that you might like to investigate are and

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