Not just playing with clay: symbol mastery for spelling and word comprehension

Carson, Patricia, and Sorin, Reesa (2016) Not just playing with clay: symbol mastery for spelling and word comprehension. International Journal of Learner Diversities and Identities, 24 (1). pp. 17-27.

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A number of students experience difficulty with the retention and recognition of basic spelling words. These students, who are often dyslexic and/or three-dimensional visual thinkers (3DVT), are usually taught spelling through mainstream pedagogical practices, such as phonics and rote learning—practices that are generally unsuccessful with this group. Symbol mastery is a process where students work with clay to create a visual interpretation of a word's meaning and then connect it to the word’s spelling and pronunciation. Davis proposed that the process of discovering what a word means and creating an image of the word three-dimensionally, would not only give ownership of the process to students, but would also be a vehicle through which they could master spelling words. This article is based on a small qualitative case study research project where the symbol mastery program was trialed with four dyslexic students in one-to-one tutorial sessions after completing a specialized program. Data were gathered through pre- and post-program interviews with students and parents, researcher observations, artifact collection, as well as pre- and post-tutoring spelling tests. The results showed that the program helped with improving spelling scores and increased confidence and willingness to attempt to spell words.

Item ID: 46235
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2327-0128
Keywords: dyslexia, spelling, creativity
Additional Information:

Author Reesa Sorin has arranged with Common Ground for the accepted versions of 15 of her articles to be available under open access for a once off fee. Email saved to Supp Docs folder.

Date Deposited: 02 Nov 2016 01:11
FoR Codes: 39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390409 Learning sciences @ 80%
39 EDUCATION > 3901 Curriculum and pedagogy > 390101 Creative arts, media and communication curriculum and pedagogy @ 20%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9399 Other Education and Training > 939907 Special Needs Education @ 100%
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