Dis korrek! Dis 'n jaarlikse spel kompetisie vir Graad 7 leerders in ons distrik. Ons het pas die finale afdeling van die kompetisie reeks afgehandel. Dit was 'n skitterende middag van drama.
Dis Korrek! Elke keer wanneer hierdie twee woorde uitgeroep word deur die seremoniemeester, is daar 'n hoorbare sug van verligting deur die deelnemer soewel as die gehoor! Hierdie kompetisie is emosionele uitputting vir almal betrokke; die leerders, onderwysers en toeskouers! 'n Mens is nie ingestel om deur so baie emosies te gaan in 2-3 ure nie. Maar dis lekker; die spanning, vreugde, teleurstelling, so amper reg antwoorde. Die gedurige wag om te hoor, "dis korrek", dryf jou mal. Maar jy word nie moedeloos nie, want dis 'n kompetisie om die top "spel" skool te identifiseer, en iemand moet dit wen! En uiteindelik word 'n wen skool aangedui. Hierdie jaar was dit Wakkerstroom Primêr. Hulle span van 3 leerders was in die top drie posisies. Uitstekend!
This competition raises an interesting question. What do we need to do in order to help children develop into effective spellers? An Australian teacher reference raised the following six principles:
- Spelling is learnt as we use it. Teachers have an essential role in increasing students' interest in words and in influencing their attitudes toward spelling. Students need to feel they are able to succeed in learning to spell.
- Learning to spell is part of the developmental process of learning to write. When teachers understand spelling development, they can match teaching strategies to developmental needs.
- Errors can be viewed as diagnostic and developmental signposts. Error analysis provides information about how far students have developed their understandings of spelling. Analysis of errors from students’ writing, guides understanding of the strategies the students are relying upon as they attempt to spell.
- Exploring words and vocabulary are part of learning to spell. Teaching spelling is an on-going activity. Whenever students come across new words, they should be encouraged to analyse them and to look at their structure and relate this to word meanings. Word study is an important part of the literacy program.
- Independence and self-evaluation are essential in spelling development. Get students to underline words they think might not be correct, even when they don’t know how to correct the words.
- Effective spellers use a number of different strategies interactively in order to spell correctly. Students need to be explicitly taught a range of strategies (visual,sound/symboland morphemic) in order to internalise them and use them interactively to produce correct spelling.
Having witnessed the confidence in learners that have been put through this competition's emotional rollercoaster ride, I can only ask: Do it again next year. Because spelling is fun...and so is school.