top of page
Why children struggle to learn to read - why children can't read, and what we can do about it! ICRWY Project

Spelling Clouds

For children to reach the self-teaching phase they need to explore the WHOLE code, often independently. Display the English spelling code on your wall with Miss Emma's Speech Sound Wall. The phoneme monsters make it easy for children  to quickly find each spelling cloud as they represent the speech sound - in the same way linguists would look for the IPA phonetic symbols.  

If not stored in orthographic lexicon (OL) the children cannot look at the spelling clouds and choose the right spelling. Although, by process of elimination, they sometimes can!

If not secure in OL they can use them to try different options - however, to know if it 'looks right', they need that mental dictionary. It’s what we do when trying different spellings as we can’t remember. When we see the right one (stored, even if the brain needs to juggle the drawers a bit) we carry on with that.

This is why we need kids to have words stored!! That develops within the self-teaching phase. The kids who don’t get to that can’t spell as nothing to access. No drawers to jiggle.

The spelling clouds show them how many correspondences there are, and encourage children to pay attention to the mapping when reading and spelling.

So what they need is the ICRWY spelling routine, to store the word, and to then find new maps in the clouds (we always ask 'what was new for YOU today). And keep exploring. It’s why the speedy six so powerful, exploring unfamiliar words.

Unfortunately if being taught traditional phonics many children only explore a third of the whole code - for about 70% of children that's fine, as the kick-start process taught them how to learn - they reach the 'self-teaching' phase. For the others they never get to that phase, and do not learn to read, let alone spell accurately (which is harder as retrieval needed)

Always ‘show the code’!


349082048_638914171127862_469022719327480815_n (1).jpg
Speech Sound Monsters - helping children understand the Universal  Spelling Code
Visible English Spelling Code - the Speech Sound Monster Bank
Visible English - IPA for children¬
bottom of page