You might be blessed with a knack for good spelling. You might not. My husband & I are both naturally good spellers, so it has been challenging to have a student who struggles. I tend not to make a big deal of it, but rather just correct her spelling as I evaluate writing projects. This year, though, she’s getting more direct spelling lessons… and the best part is that it’s FREE!
Here are some options for free spelling lessons:
Spelling City is an easy-to-navigate site for finding pre-made spelling lists. You can print out the list or you can let your child do it online. There are games and printable handwriting practice sheets, as well. There is also a paid version, but the free version really has a lot to offer too. We have done this website in the past & the kids really enjoyed it.
Home Spelling Words offers basic word lists & tests for grades K-7. You can also add your own lists! It also keeps tests scores and a grade report. This looks like it might work for kids who get distracted by lots of colors and flashing lights on the screen. It’s a basic, easy to use (with tutorials if you need them) program.
The Basic Cozy Spelling Course is offered for free from Splashes from the River. It is for ages 9 & up, as you will see if you check out the word lists. This is a course that is designed to go in a specific order, so if you pick and choose lessons, you might miss out on something. It has word lists and dictation sentences for applying context to the list words.
Garden of Praise has Bible-based spelling lessons as well as some musical spelling lessons complete with MIDI files to accompany you. This really is a garden of resources for homeschool parents. Browse around and see if there is something else you might use.
Big IQ Kids has free spelling lists for grade levels 1-8. The student earns a coin for each lesson completed. The coins are good for spending in the game section, which are spelling related games. Some games are more than 1 coin, so kids have to choose between saving and spending. The graded lessons are emailed to you if you choose that option from the report card. This site also has free math fact practice, name the US states, and a virtual spelling bee with kids across the world, or in your own neighborhood! Overall, it seems that this site has some features for free (like grading & report cards) that other sites charge for. They do offer a paid version, but I think the free one is sufficient. (Please note that, for me, this website worked much better on FireFox than on Safari.)
KidsSpell has 412 spelling lessons. There are games for all levels of spelling ability. No registration is required, just click and spell. And according to the website, “Completing all 412 lessons will take approximately 10 years if completed at a pace of one per week. They can be completed even faster if students work on them through the Summer.” This website is a part of the Kids Know It network which has numerous sited dedicated to making learning fun.
If you are more inclined to skip the online lessons and get back to basics, try the Charlotte Mason style of learning spelling rules while doing copy work. SimplyCharlotteMason.com describes how to use living books, classics, or your normal textbooks to use “prepared dictation” to introduce spelling & vocabulary.
You can use this Puzzle Maker page to create fun word game printables while using your own lists. For example, if you are doing a literature unit from Garden of Praise on the Boxcar Children Books, you can take the phonograms (rhyming word families) listed and make a puzzle out of them. Some kids won’t even know they are learning!
Master Spell administers spelling drills using over 3,600 included words and sentences spoken with a real voice and supplemental guidance using the Mac’s Text-to-Speech. Parents and teachers can record their own words and sentences too.
I think there is something here for every kind of learner. Whether you want pencil-and-paper style, literature unit lists, or interactive online lessons, it’s here. Please comment if you have another one that has worked for you!