Have you heard of Spelling City? Chances are you have because it’s becoming so popular! If not, it’s an online spelling and vocabulary program for students. Teachers can create accounts and upload spelling or vocabulary lists for students to use. Your students can also create their own lists if you don’t have time to create them ahead of time, and they don’t need an account to use the website this way.
After pulling up the word list, students can choose from several games to play while reinforcing the new vocabulary development. This can be used at home or at school, and there are options for printables too. I most often print cursive practice pages, but students love printing the word searches too if they have extra spelling time. For a challenge, I print the scrambled sentences.
For more game options and data tracking, you can upgrade to a paid account. This lets you create user names and passwords for your students. Parents can also purchase subscriptions. This is my third year using the classroom paid option, and I think it’s well worth the money. With the paid option, I can group students and create assignments for each individual group. When students log in, they are required to complete the assigned activities before playing games of their choice. The best part? Students activities are logged so I can view their progress in the grade book. You also have the option to give spelling and vocabulary
tests online. I use these for practice quizzes that are
automatically graded. It’s an effective way for students to receive
immediate feedback before their final test.
Here‘s a screenshot from one of my struggling students. You can see that the activities are short at 1-3 minutes each. You can also see that this student took 3 tests over these 4 weeks. I love that I can see which words were missed even though I didn’t have to grade a thing. Also notice that this student is playing at home in the evening and in the morning before school. A struggling student is doing extra work because it’s fun!
Now that we have a grade level set of ipads, I’m using the Spelling City app too. Students grab an ipad with headphones and a pillow before heading off to cozy up somewhere in the room to play games. We’ve even worked Spelling City into some of my students’ RTI accommodations.
Bottom-line: the games are fun, interactive, and engaging so students forget they’re working. Several students log in to play from home in the evenings because they enjoy it so much. My scores are consistently higher on weeks when we use Spelling City too. I see it as a win-win and money well spent. Can you tell that I’ve found something I’m actually excited to use? =)
To show more possibilities of what this site can do, you can click over and see premade lists for many concepts and subject areas, spanning a wide range of grade levels too. You can also view my pre-loaded lists that I use in class.
I’d love to hear how you use it in your classrooms!