Spelling Lists in a Developmental Word Study Program


     Research indicates that a developmental, word study program is highly successful in producing independent spellers and writers. In Word Study, children advance through a progression of spelling development from reliance on sound to more intricate, pattern-based strategies. The goal, of course, is that this pattern, or rule recognition, will then be applied to everyday writing. Children learn not only to spell the assigned words correctly, but are more able to apply the spelling pattern to other words in both reading and writing.

     In Word Study, your child is taught to explore the sound, pattern, and meaning relationships among words through various compare and contrast strategies called word sorts. A description of these sorts is described as suggested activities.


Basic Word Sort – Read and sort the words into the correct categories. Some words may not fall into a category and will be listed as exceptions or ‘oddballs’.

Sort and Write – Children should again sort and also write their words in the correct categories.

Blind Sort – Lay down the key words or category cards. Read each word orally. The student must indicate where the word should be placed without seeing it. Or as a blind written sort, students should write the word in the correct category without looking at the sort card.

Sort and Rhyme – Add rhyming words to each category checking for similar spelling patterns.

Word Hunt – Look through books, magazines, or the newspaper for other words that fit the week’s pattern.


Level C:  Within Word Patterns:


      Sort 1 – Long Vowel Patterns CVCe

Sort 2 – Long Vowel Patterns CVVC

Sort 3 – Long Vowel Patterns VCC- igh and Open Syllables –y, ay, ew, ow

Sort 4 – R-Influenced Vowel Patterns ar, ir, or, ur

Sort 5 –  R Influenced Vowel Patterns – are, ire, ore, ure, air, ear

Sort 6 –  Dipthongs - oi, oy, ou, ow

Sort 7 –  Ambiguous Vowels  - aw, au, al ou

Sort 8  -  Homophones

Sort 9 –  Three Letter Blends – scr, str, spr, thr, shr, squ

Sort 10 – Word Endings –ce, -ve, -se

Sort 11 – Word Endings –dge, -ge

Sort 12 – Word Endings  –tch, ch

Sort 13 – Contractions  - not, will

Sort 14 – Contractions – is, have

Sort 15 – Adding ing to Words with VC and VCC

Sort 16 – Adding ing to Words with VCe and VVC

Sort 17 -  Review of Inflected Ending - ing

Sort 18 -  Adding ed to Words with VC, VCe, VVC, VCC

Sort 19 -  Unusual Past Tense Words

Sort 20 -  Plural Endings – adding es

Sort 21 -  Unusual Plurals

Sort 22 -  Word Endings –y, -ey, -ie

Sort 23 – Plural Endings – Final y

Sort 24 – Adding Inflected Endings –s, -ed, and –ing to Words with Final y

Sort 25 -  Compound Words

Sort 26 – More Compound Words

Sort 27 – Syllable Juncture in VCV and VCCV

Sort 28 – More Syllable Junctures in VCV and VCCV

Sort 29 -  Syllable Juncture in VCV and VVCV

Sort 30 -  Syllable Juncture in VCCCV and VV

Sort 31 -  Open and Closed Syllables and Inflected Endings

Sort 32 -  Long A in Accented Syllables

Sort 33 -  Long I in Accented Syllables

Sort 34 -  Long O in Accented Syllables

Sort 35 -  Long U in Accented Syllables

Sort 36 -  Short and Long E in Accented Syllables                           





Level D: Syllables and Affixes

Sort 1 – Review Syllable Junctures- Open and Closed

Sort 2 -  Review Open and Closed Syllables and Inflected Endings

Sort 3 – Review Long Vowel Patterns in Accented Syllables

Sort 4 -  Review Long Vowel Pairs oa, ow, oo in Accented Syllables

Sort 5 -  Review Vowel Pairs ai, ee, ea in Accented Syllables

Sort 6 -  Ambiguous Vowels oy, oi, ou, ow in Accented Syllables

Sort 7 – Ambiguous Vowels au, aw, al in Accented Syllables

Sort 8 -  R-Influenced  a  in Accented Syllables

Sort 9 – R-Influenced  o  in Accented Syllables

Sort 10 – Words with  w  or /w/ Before the Vowel













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