While we can sometimes depend on technology to let us know when we have made spelling errors, it is crucial to remember that technology is not always reliable. Spelling is so important. Spelling accurately helps others understand you and improves your essay writing and editing skills. In addition, word knowledge makes it possible for you to understand more of what you read. The more you learn about spelling, the more you know about how words function. This knowledge can help you figure out the meaning of new words, and the best way to pronounce them.
Before you learn to spell English words, figure out which type of spelling you want to learn. Canadian English has somewhat different spellings and merges both American and British conventions. For example words such as paralyze and realize are customarily spelled with -yse (for the former) and -ise (for the latter), replacing the “z” with an “s.” Confused yet? Don’t worry.
Here are five tips to enhance your essay writing and editing skills:
- Read a lot
Nothing’s better for learning about words than reading. Just as we learn spoken English by hearing people talking, we learn written language (including spelling) by reading many different sources. Spelling isn’t about how a word sounds, it’s about how it looks on the page, which means you must examine words in printed material to learn how they’re spelled.
- Analyze misspelled words
Create a list of your frequently misspelled words. When you find that you are spelling the same word wrong over and over again, take note of the word or write it down on a notepad. Perhaps you already know the way to spell some frequently misspelled words (good for you)!
When you find a strange word, look it up in the dictionary and write it in your notepad. Unlike the enormous lists of “usually misspelled words” in the rear of some grammar books, this is your custom list that reveals the words and spelling rules that challenge you. So, instead of a long list of other people’s challenges, you have a custom-made guide of your own.
- Use mnemonics.
Mnemonics are memory tricks. Spelling rules are often intangible and, in English, completely at odds, so they can be difficult to remember. So mnemonics “sneak in” through an alternative part of your brain, by rhyming, imagining, or forming a pattern to help make sense of the spelling of a word. Here are some examples of spelling mnemonics:
- Rhymes and tunes make words easier to recall. You can even make up your own!
- An acronym chooses the first letter of a couple of words and puts them together. You might already use acronyms online or in texts. LOL, stands for “Laughing Out Loud.” TGIF for “Thank God It’s Friday.” One way to recall some catchy spellings is by turning the word into a mnemonic. Turn hard words into absurd sentences and you will recall them in no time.
- Some mnemonics use sentences to describe the hard part of spelling a word. Having difficulty spelling the word “isle”? Keep in mind, an isle “is land” encircled by water. To spell “separate” correctly remember the “a rat” in the middle of word.
- Crosswords and code words
Puzzles are an excellent method to make your brain work harder and enhance your general knowledge, and they’re a superior method for improving your spelling. Crosswords supply a string of hints to find words which you place in overlapping horizontal and vertical boxes. Other “brain teasers” include “jumbles” where you work out which numbers stand for certain letters, in order to spell a `code word’ in a phrase. If you get the spelling incorrect in either a crossword or a code word, the other words won’t match, so it’s a great idea to use a dictionary as a tool when solving those puzzles.
Crosswords are a time-tested method of learning new words and mastering how to spell. It is a fun game and involves a fair amount of brain activity. Sometimes you might guess which words go where, but eventually you will come to realize that you have learned several new words and the correct spelling for these words; it’s a great aid.
- Work with others
Many individuals find group work more exciting than solo study sessions. Groups can break the monotony of learning, and, by divvying up spelling jobs and sharing words that are tricky, you can pool your resources.
One way to test yourself on a word you spelled from its pronunciation is to get somebody else to pronounce your spelled word. If they cannot figure out the word, there’s a possibility you misspelled it. When you work in groups, you’ll be able to take turns testing each other, and the sessions can be both useful and fun.
So, how does that make you feel? Is it a daunting list? Perhaps. However, if you work with others you can cut the workload. And, hey, there aren’t any real short cuts in enhancing your spelling skills. It requires true dedication. These tips will help you streamline the procedure and empower you to maximize your study time. Check out some free sample essays on our Masters Essay website to help improve your spelling skills today.