Spelling Shed’s approach to spelling involves the relationship between sounds and written symbols and using morphology to help spell through meaning. The carefully selected word lists and engaging activities allow opportunities to incorporate phonics and meaning to strengthen spelling skills and build vocabulary acquisition.
Spelling and word knowledge are key components in the process of learning to read and write. Spelling Shed makes the acquisition of these key skills fun and engaging for students and easy for teachers to implement. Our approach to learning new words follows the Science of Reading research. Designed by a team of teachers, Spelling Shed provides spelling word lists for students in K-5 that follow a systematic progression of phonics and word study skills typically addressed at each grade level.
Our digital platform offers a variety of learning games to maintain student engagement. Students are able to play live games (Hive games) with each other, challenge others to games, earn rewards, monitor their own progress, and even check their ranking with others across the world. We provide multiple levels of support for those students who require it as they learn new words. Teachers can use Spelling Shed for whole class learning, small group instruction, independent practice, or as a remote learning tool.
We have a variety of engaging games designed to promote word inquiry, increase word study skills, build and utilize grapheme-phoneme correspondence, enhance morphological awareness, and expand vocabulary acquisition.
Our spelling games provide differentiation and allow students to practice with just the right amount of support. The “Easy” level provides the child with the highest degree of support. Students will hear and see the word prior to playing the game. Students will only be provided the letter tiles that make up the word. As the child progresses through each level the amount of support they receive will become less and less. Finally at the “Extreme” level they receive almost no support and are provided a full keyboard of letter tiles.
One unique feature of our games is that it allows students to build and spell words with graphemes. This encoding process helps to map graphemes in spellings to phonemes in pronunciations, stores words in long-term memory, strengthens the ability to decode new, unfamiliar words, and develops automaticity. In addition to this unique feature, we also still have the option to spell letter by letter.
The Spelling Shed lists were developed by applying the Science of Reading research and follow a systematic progression. The progression covers a range of phonics skills, high-frequency words, and morphological awareness, typically addressed in each grade level. At the beginning of each grade level, there is an intentional spiral review of previously taught skills, but they also include words of increasing difficulty. Throughout the progression, new and more advanced concepts/skills are delicately intertwined within the review. This aids in linking past learning to the new concept/skill and to reinforce and solidify learning.
Every grade has core foundational skills incorporated into the list progression, at varying degrees of difficulty, depending on the grade level.
The spiral review of core skills allows teachers the flexibility to use any grade level’s list for remediation and/or enrichment purposes. In addition, there are extended learning lists in each grade level. These lists provide further opportunities for intervention and/or review purposes. They also could be used as acceleration for students that move through concepts quickly and/or are ready to advance through skills.
By leveraging technology, our platform enables learning to happen anywhere and everywhere. Our game just requires a device. With our app, an internet connection is not even required as long as the required word lists have been loaded first.
Many schools use our platform in school, particularly those with 1-1 devices. Others use our game as a part of home learning to consolidate the skills they have taught in school. However, any combination works and even Hive Games can be run with a mixture of local and remote players.
For self-directed play, children can create their own multiplayer Hive Games to play with friends. Challenges give specific tasks for groups of learners to work towards and our leagues provide a way to recognize achievement within a class or whole school.
Spelling Shed tracks student game plays along with their responses. Data is provided at the student level that demonstrates the students proficiency over time with a particular skill. Teachers can monitor weekly activity in order to advance or remediate as needed.
Teachers can monitor assigned activity progress of the group or individual students through our data portal. Our Hive Game results data makes it easy for teachers and parents to identify particular misconceptions that a child may have with a specific pattern.
Within Spelling Shed, digital games and assessment tools for phonics are available. These support the teaching of phonics via Phonics Shed but also give Spelling Shed users an additional set of tools to help develop children's phonics skills.
Our games start from pre-reading skills such as environmental sounds, include decoding-based games and even a flying superhero hare. Our assessment tool allows you to screen pupils for their phonics knowledge and track their attainment.
We also include a phonics screening check tool to help assess and prepare children for the year 1 phonics screening check.
Per student / year
The Science of Reading is the culmination of an extensive body of scientifically-based research that spans more than 50 years. It illuminates how the brain learns to read and the best practices for instruction. The research stems from thousands of studies in multiple disciplines, such as cognitive psychology, communication sciences, developmental psychology, education, linguistics, neuroscience, and school psychology. The findings provide information needed to gain a deeper understanding of how we learn to read, what skills are involved, how they work together, which parts of the brain are responsible for reading development, and why some students experience more difficulty than others. The cumulative research of over five decades supports evidence-based best practices for the systematic and explicit instruction of foundational literacy skills.