Heads Up

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Year 4: Words Their Way

Download available:
WTW Home Activities

In order to move students forward in reading and writing, it’s essential to have efficient and effective instruction in word study. The Words Their Way program provides this instruction through a researched-based approach that allows students to receive instruction at their developmental level.

Words Their Ways addresses foundational skills (phonics), spelling and vocabulary through working with words by examining, manipulating, comparing and categorizing.

Words Their Way doesn’t use traditional spelling tests. Instead, we use a child-centred approach that helps students recognize and learn to apply sound, patterns and meaning in their sorts and beyond isolated lists.

We began our year with spelling assessments where we were able to see where your sons are on the spelling continuum. We’ve divided the boys into three groups, broadly based on their current understanding of word patterns. These groups aren’t fixed and we’ll assess boys and change groups throughout the year. At this point, we’ll do our word work with paper copies. As the year moves on we’ll move to digital activities.

These words aren’t to be memorized. Instead, as the skills sheets will note, your son should spend 10 to 15 minutes weekly exploring, playing and sorting the words. The word list that your son will bring home doesn’t need to be returned, nor does any wrritten work related to their words need to be submitted. The home practice is meant to help your son consolidate what he’s working on in class, to provide you with a window into what we’re learning and to encourage both of you to have fun playing with words.

You’ll find ideas of how the boys can explore the words beyond simply sorting them by their word pattern in the download above.

Thank you for your support with this program.

Kathryn O’Brien, Michael Bushey and Sarah Campbell



Blue: Whole School
Yellow: Upper School
Red: Prep School



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