The effects of phonologically constructed spelling on first graders' literacy development

Gwen Lewis Sussman, Fordham University

Abstract

This study was designed to measure the effect of three approaches to invented spelling on first graders' literacy development in a whole language setting. Three first grades participated in the study, with each teacher delivering all three treatments. Developmental spelling pretest scores and gender were used to assign participants $(N=65)$ by stratified random selection to one of three treatment groups within their own class.^ Treatment was administered once a week for 20 minutes and was in addition to the 75 minutes a week that students wrote with invented spelling. The Invented Spelling Alone group (ISA) spent additional time writing with invented spelling. The Invented Spelling plus Phonological Construction (IS+PC) group segmented words and used letter tiles to spell them. The Invented Spelling plus Orthographic Feedback (IS+OF) group had their journal entries rewritten in conventional spelling for them to reread. Duration of treatment was from November to May.^ Posttest data were collected to determine developmental spelling levels. Analysis of covariance determined no significant differences between groups existed. Three correlated sample t tests indicated that all three treatment groups made substantial gains during the course of intervention.^ Posttest data on conventional spelling, word identification, word attack, writing development, and reading comprehension were analyzed by multivariate analysis of variance. Results revealed no significant differences between groups on any of these measures. Group differences for the IS+PC group on the spelling measure approached significance.^ Results obtained for all measures lacked extreme ranges and grade level equivalents for word identification, word attack, and spelling were at grade level. This lends support to the use of invented spelling under any approach. ^

Subject Area

Education, Early Childhood|Education, Elementary|Education, Reading

Recommended Citation

Gwen Lewis Sussman, "The effects of phonologically constructed spelling on first graders' literacy development" (January 1, 1998). ETD Collection for Fordham University. Paper AAI9839520.
http://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI9839520

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