To strengthen 8th grade vocabulary and spelling skills, here's a simple idea that you can use all year long! It works well in the classroom and at home.
1) Begin with a good word list of words that students should know but perhaps do not. If you don't already have a list, check out this list of 8th grade spelling words. If these words are too difficult or too easy, choose one of the other sets of words from our word list page or difficult spelling words page.
2) At the beginning of the week, write 3 words in the top corner of the chalkboard. You'll need to leave them there all week. At home you can post them on the fridge or some other spot where they can be seen easily.
3) Briefly discuss the meaning of the words and how to use them correctly. Also and point out any tricky letter combinations that might make the words difficult to spell.
4) Tell the students (or your son or daughter) that they should try to use these words frequently throughout the week in classroom discussions and written assignments.
Announce a simple system
for keeping track of the number of times each student uses
the word correctly, including correct spelling. For instance, someone
could be in charge of adding tally marks to a wall chart by each
person's name. Or each student could be trusted to keep his own
6) At the end of the week or month give a small reward to students based on the number of tally marks he/she has earned.
For example, students with 10 or more tally marks could have a shorter homework assignment over the weekend. They could be given 5 extra credit points on a tough assignment, or they could be allowed 10 extra minutes of library time.
At home, you could keep tally marks for each family member who is old enough to participate, including Mom and Dad! You'll think of many rewards such as picking the next board game on family night, choosing the next rental movie, skipping a small chore, etc.
If you're ready to get started, here are a few interesting words from our list of 8th grade spelling words with which you could begin: antecedent, fibrous, correlation, precocious, ominous,and phenomenon.
Remember, this is an activity you can use all year long, at home or at school, to enhance 8th grade vocabulary and spelling skills.
You'll find ways to vary this as you go through the year. For example, you might ask students to supply some of the vocabulary words, and of course, you'll want to change the rewards frequently.
Wacky Weather Worksheet:
Solving and creating cryptogram puzzles
Antonym Antics: More free vocabulary worksheets to challenge upper grade students
Vocabulary and Spelling Boosters: General tips for boosting skills in both "over-confident" and "reluctant" learners