Spelling Tests

Spelling Vocabulary the learning cafe

Spelling tests are a ritual in the Learning Cafe. We engage with a list of twenty (20) words every two weeks.

Students will develop meaningful study strategies coupled with word study strategies throughout the year. Through word study, students also develop independent study skills and habits for effective time managements.

Our Spelling Tests are Different!

Because our spelling tests are very different than the traditional laundry list method of recall, students are provided with time to practice the process of completing a spelling test by practicing sentence dictation.

Writing Tools and grammar learned in English are included in dictated sentences. Students are required to identify these writing features included in each spelling sentence. This is why spelling grades are recorded as English grades.

50% of spelling test is in the form of dictated sentences. The remainder of the test is a blends between words only and recalls (See the 5 Minute Study Strategy for a clear description of the recall portion the the 5MSS).

The Process of Spelling Tests

These spelling tests may at first be intimating, but after a few practice runs, students gain confidence in the process. Students apply grammar and Writing Tools while dictating sentences.


  • Teacher reads a sentence aloud the first time. Students listen without writing.
  • Teacher reads the sentence a second time. The students begin writing the sentence.
  • Teacher  repeats the sentence multiple times, based on the needs of the class.
  • Students proofread sentence for accurate grammar and punctuation and accurate application of current grammar skills and Writing Tools, giving special attention to details while recording sentences accurately.

Evaluation of Assessment

Once completed, spelling test are self graded with guidance and review of the teacher. This way students are able identify mastered skills and skills requiring greater support.