Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Throwing letters out of the window

Some people learn better when they are given a picture or an action - either a real one, or something in their head to visualise. It's worth remembering this when helping your children to learn something new, as the teacher in the classroom doesn't have time to help each and every child come up with their own strategies for learning, and if your child is one of these visual learners, helping him or her at home to come up with pictures and actions can really help them to remember things.

Take apostrophes. It's hard to remember when to use them, and something I use both with the adults I teach ESOL to, and with my own children, is the idea that when we squish two words together, some letters get pushed out, and as we don't need them any more, we can just throw them out of the window. I do actions to go with this too - I actually throw the letters towards the open window with one hand as I rub the letter out on the whiteboard with the other. I think my ESOL students have a quiet laugh at me behind my back at these antics, but there's no denying that it helps them to remember to put an apostrophe in place of the discarded letter or letters. For example, when we squish is and not together to make isn't, the 'o' is thrown out of the window and we put the apostrophe in its place.

My 7 year old has apostrophes in her spellings this week - I'll let you know how much fun we had throwing our letters out of the kitchen window.


  1. I read an article only today about apostrophes in the Times Ed, wasn't you was it?
    I admit, I do have a thing about them.

  2. Haven't seen the article Pam. I too have a thing about apostrophes and plan to write more about them!