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Spelling Long Words: The Syllable-Building Strategy

 
 
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Spelling Long Words, Bee

A long word is a word that has more than one syllable (i.e., multisyllabic). A syllable is a word or part of a word that is spoken with a single sound of the voice. Using the Syllable-Building Strategy will help you spell long words such as democratic.

Here is how a student named William used the steps in the Syllable-Building Strategy to learn to spell democratic. He came across this word while reading his social studies textbook.

  • Step 1. William carefully copied the word into his notebook. He checked what he wrote to be sure that he had spelled the word correctly. Here is what he wrote.
  • Democratic
  • Step 2. William then located the word democratic in his dictionary.
  • Step 3. William used the phonetic respelling of democratic in the dictionary to help him pronounce the word. William knew that if he could still not pronounce democratic, he could ask his teacher for help.
  • Step 4. From the dictionary, William learned that democratic was a four-syllable word. William wrote democratic leaving a space between each syllable. Here is what he wrote.
  • Dem o crat ic
  • Step 5. William wrote the first syllable of democratic three times. He pronounced this syllable each time he wrote it. Here is what he wrote.
    Dem
    Dem
    Dem
    William then covered what he had written and wrote the first syllable of democratic from memory. Here is what he wrote.
    Dem
    He looked to see if he had spelled the first syllable correctly and found that he had. William then wrote the first two syllables of democratic together three times. He pronounced the two syllables together as he wrote them. Here is what he wrote.
    Demo
    Demo
    Demo
    He covered what he had written and wrote the first two syllables from memory. Here is what he wrote.
    Dema
    Spelling Long Words, Pen and Paper William then looked to see if he had spelled the first two syllables correctly and found that he had not. Therefore, he once again wrote the first two syllables of democratic three times, pronouncing them as he did so. Here is what he wrote.
    Demo
    Demo
    Demo
    William covered what he had written and wrote the first two syllables from memory. Here is what he wrote.
    Demo
    He looked to see if he had spelled the first two syllables correctly and found that he had.
    William continued this procedure for the first three syllables of democratic and then for the entire word.
  • Step 6. Once William had correctly spelled the entire word from memory, he wrote democratic on his personal spelling list. He wrote both the entire word and the word broken into syllables.
  • Step 7. William periodically reviewed the spelling of democratic using the following Spell and Say Review Procedure:
    1. He pronounced democratic aloud.
    2. He pronounced and spelled aloud each syllable.
    3. He spelled the entire word aloud.
    4. He wrote democratic three times.

Using the Syllable-Building Strategy will make you a better speller.

All articles in the Language Arts category:

     
Building Vocabulary Capitalization Rules Choosing a Topic
Common Foreign Phrases Common Prefixes Commonly Misspelled Words
Confusing Pairs of Words Critical Reading Eponyms
Expository Writing Five Paragraph Essay Forming Plurals
Idioms Metaphors Number Prefixes
Parts of Speech Phonics Rules Proofreading
Using Punctuation Marks Reading Comprehension Reading Novels
Revising and Editing an Essay Similes Spelling Long Words
Transition Words and Phrases Useful Spelling Rules Using Quotation Marks
Word Identification Writing a Book Report Writing a Narrative Essay
Writing a Persuasive Essay Writing a Research Paper Writing Numbers
Writing Techniques Writing Terms  
 
     
 

 
 
     
 
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