Spelling Shed Curriculum: Built on the Science of Reading
Systematic instruction means that there is a planned sequence of phonics elements that comprises a logical progression of skills and knowledge, with sufficient practice and cumulative review for mastery to be achieved.

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.

  • K-2 word lists are based mostly on phoneme-grapheme correspondences (GPCs), beginning with the most common patterns to more advanced ones. The majority of the words selected for each list contain only the GPCs that have been previously reviewed, to avoid cognitive overload, help ensure focus, and attain mastery of the skill at hand.
  • In grades 3-5, the shift from phonics to morphology becomes increasingly important, and the word lists begin to focus more on providing opportunities to spell through meaning, with less emphasis on GPCs.
  • Grades K-3 word lists integrate grade-level appropriate, decodable and partially decodable Dolch HFWs and Fry’s Instant 300 HFWs.

All Lists are based on:

  • The Science of Reading research
  • A logical progression and spiral review of skills and knowledge, including grade-level appropriate high-frequency words
  • Aligns with current ELA state standards

The spiral review of core skills allows teachers the flexibility to use any grade level’s list for remediation and/or enrichment purposes. If students are ready for more challenging words relating to a particular pattern, educators can utilize a list from a higher grade level that matches the skill the class is working on. If students are struggling with a particular pattern, educators can use previous grade level lists, which will have a more in-depth focus on that pattern, to match students’ needs. In addition, there are extended learning lists in each grade level that have (ExL) included in the title. These optional 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. These lists can be skipped if needed. For best results and full coverage, it is suggested to follow the progression from beginning to end.

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🐝 Scope and Sequence 🐝 Science of Spelling 🐝 Science of Reading