13 Fun and Easy Spelling Activity Ideas for the Classroom

When it comes to learning spelling, repetition is an important part of the process. That’s why teachers are always looking for ways to encourage students to practise their spelling words and to stay engaged in the process. If you’re finding that you’ve repeated the same spelling activities so many times that even you are getting sick of them, then this post is for you.

Here are 13 of my favourite spelling activities to use in the classroom:

Roll & Spell

In ‘roll & spell’ students roll a die to determine how they’ll write out their spelling words. You can change up the tasks for each number rolled as often as you like. As you can see in the image below, you can easily incorporate themes into this activity too.

You can find a copy of this Roll and Spell template here

Roll and Spell Spelling Activity

Have Fun with Themed Word Lists

Themed spelling word lists provide a fun and simple way to get your students interested in their spelling lessons. They also give extra context to the words you’re teaching. You can get creative with this and even use topics that are of particular interest to your students to guide the spelling list themes. I also like to use seasonal spelling lists, like the Summer spelling list in the image below. 

Australian Summer Word List

Unscramble Words

There are a couple of reasons why unscrambling words is an effective spelling activity for students. Firstly, the challenge of figuring out the hidden words often keeps students engaged. Secondly, by providing them with all the letters in a word, you are helping them to call on their spelling knowledge to work out which letter combinations should go together.

You can even use this activity along with a themed spelling list to give students more context, as you can see that I’ve done in the Nursery Rhyme Word Scramble pictured below.

Nursery Rhyme Word Scramble

Order Alphabetically

When students are asked to order their words alphabetically, it gives them the opportunity to familiarise themselves with the alphabet while they write out their spelling words. Like unscrambling words, it also adds an element of challenge that helps keep students motivated on the task.

There are plenty of ways you can present this activity to students, but if you’re looking for a ready-made template, I have an ABC order page of shape words in my shape words literacy set pictured below.

Shape Words Alphabetical Order

Play a Matching Game

Matching games can work well for many categories of spelling words, like compound words or plurals. With the same set of cards, you can play a variety of engaging games too, like ‘snap’ or ‘memory’ or ‘find your partner’.

The image below shows a set of robotics-themed cards that I made to help students practise spelling plural nouns. If you’d like a copy, you can find these Plural Nouns Matching Cards here.

Plural Nouns Matching Cards

Go on a Word Hunt

Have your students practise their reading and spelling at the same time while doing a word hunt! As students read their texts, ask them to look out for certain types of words. You may ask them to look for adjectives or 5-letter words, or you can do a mixture of options like in the image below.

Once they’ve found these words in their book, have them write out the words (with the correct spelling) for later reference.

If you’re looking for some ready-made word hunt templates, you can find my set of Word Hunt Templates here

Word Hunt Activity

Do a ‘How Many Words’ Challenge

There’s a word challenge that works great as a spelling task, which I like to call ‘How Many Words?’ You start by giving students one or two long words and ask them to use the letters within the word/s you gave them to create new words. For example, if I gave students the word ‘BIRTHDAY’, they could take the B, I, R and D to make the new word ‘bird’.

This activity can really keep kids engaged for a long time, as they try to find as many new words as possible. The image below shows an example of this task that is included in my birthday themed word activity set.

How Many Words Spelling Challenge Activity

You can view the Birthday Themed Word Activities here.

Complete the Words

Another fun and simple spelling task to try is a ‘complete the words’ task. Simply write out some words with some missing letters, and have students complete the words with the correct spelling. The great thing about this task is that you can easily differentiate it depending on how confident your students are with their spelling. 

The image below shows an example of this activity. This template is part of my Chick Themed Spelling Word Activity set, which you can find here.

Complete the Words Spelling Activity

Write the Room

Write the Room’ is a fun and I believe very much underrated activity that can be highly engaging and effective in the context of spelling. My students always loved playing Write the Room, and it’s so simple to set up.

Simply write the spelling words you’re focusing on with your students on task cards and hide them around the room. Ask students to go and hunt for all the words, recording them (with the correct spelling) as they go. Fun and simple!

Write the Room

If you’re interested in trying this out but don’t have time to get it organised, you can find my ready-made set of Write the Room cards and recording sheets for the phonics sounds Oi, Oy, Oa & Ow by clicking here.

Sort the Sounds

A ‘Sound Sort’ is like ‘Complete the Words’, except it focuses on one particular phonics sound. In the example pictured below, all the words have what we call a ‘long a’ sound, but there are different letters that can be combined to form this sound. Three of those letter combinations are ‘ay’, ‘ai’ and ‘eigh’.

In a Sound Sort, students will determine which combination of letters is making the missing sound by drawing on their spelling knowledge.

The example shown below is part of my Mixed Review Phonics Worksheet Set, which you can find here.

Sort the Spelling Sounds

Secret Code

Have students develop a secret code for the letters of the alphabet, then write their spelling words using this secret code. This is a highly engaging activity that I’ve seen turn even my most reluctant spellers into vigilant code creators. You can add to the fun by having them swap with a friend to try to ‘break the code’.

Secret Code Spelling Activity

Use a Spelling Activity Menu

The ‘secret code’ activity is one of the many activities I use on my spelling menus. Spelling menus are a great tool for keeping kids engaged by giving them a choice in which activities to complete. To create a spelling menu, simply provide your students with a range of spelling activities to complete and allow them to choose which ones they’d like to do. This works especially well for homework. 

Spelling Menu for Kids

If you don’t have time to create your own spelling menus, but want to give this strategy a try, you can find my set of pre-made spelling menus here.

Go Digital

Finally, there are lots of options of websites out there that have spelling practice activities for students to complete online. Some are free and some require a subscription. One that I would recommend, that has worked well with my students in the past is Spelling City. They have some free and some premium spelling activities and I find that they provide a good variety of challenges.

Having an app or website that students can use for practising spelling can help to shake things up when they’re becoming less motivated.

I hope that these ideas inspire you to try something new with your spelling routine. You can use the links to buy your own copies of any resources I’ve referenced in this blog post. 

Do you want some more tips for teaching spelling and vocabulary while you’re here? Then have a read through my post on Tips for Teaching Children Spelling and Vocabulary.

P.S. I’d love to hear how my tips and resources are helping you in your teaching, so leave a comment to let me know!

Have a question or a request? You can contact me at blueskydesignsbymrst@gmail.com.

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