When considering Word Work, just as with all of Daily 5, the types of words and participation in Word Work is fully dependent upon each individual student. For children who are beginning readers and writers, or beginning readers and writers of the English language, we often use the Word Work time to kinesthetically practice basic sight words (sometimes known as the Dolch sight words). These words are found in approximately 75 percent of beginning print. Knowing how to recognize and write these words (which often do not follow basic phonetic principles) will support children as they read and write.
We also use Word Work as a time for students to work with vocabulary and words they nearly know in their writing, the words they underlined while writing and moved on. Students go back through their writing, find these underlined words, and add the correct spelling of them to their word collector. The use of whole-class or individual Word Collectors allows children to focus on words they are trying to learn.
Because it is based on need, some children may not participate in Word Work. This is particularly true of older students with advanced spelling and vocabulary skills. Again, it is all about meeting the needs of the learners in front of us.
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Intermediate Word Work