How I Use It
Being an instructor of K-5 pre-service teachers, I also correct writing assignments with spelling errors that should be caught via word processing spellchecking. Unfortunately, they are not and some students really believe the words are spelled correctly. One strategy I am implementing to partially offset this problem is requiring students to integrate iPad apps into their lesson plans. But first they must learn and master the apps themselves. Introducing them to Spelling City as a high potential iPad classroom app works because the pre-service teachers will first use lists I've created just for them. As such, they practice spelling words they themselves frequently misspell while learning the games. Then, they create lists and evaluate the potential of these apps in their K-5 pre-service teacher field experiences. I use Spelling City with pre-service teachers who 1) need to improve their spelling skills; and who 2) are investigating and considering Spelling City as an iPad app in their future classrooms.
Spelling City indeed can be set up in 5 minutes or less and its game format puts a new twist on drill and practice. Spelling can be a very boring and frustrating subject if not linked to a motivating experience. Whereas Spelling City is not a video game, it is engaging. Five to 10 minutes daily sessions would definitely allow students to improve their spelling skills and ultimately their writing skills. From a teacher perspective, creating numerous lists is quick and would allow me to help students practice new sight words and new vocabulary words. Additionally, new lists are can be easily created and individualized for students who are experiencing problem with specific words. Spelling City is particularly useful and quite beneficial for exceptional learning needs students.