Essential Word Knowledge

Spelling and Beyond

The Spell of Language gives teachers curricular material and techniques that have proven successful in instructing the basic skills that underlie the efficient use of written language. The Spell of Language is used in regular and remedial education programs, in adult programs, and in instruction of students for whom English is not the language they have been exposed to since birth. It is a comprehensive, one-of-a-kind program. The Spell of Language has two components:

  • Teachers use the Essential Word Knowledge (EWK) curricula to instruct sound/spelling correspondences, including how to accurately recognize and produce all the vowel sounds. It also is used to instruct the first, essential phonetic patterns of English. Essential Word Knowledge provides the material to instruct early word learning and the 600 words which occur most frequently in written English. Throughout, students learn how written words map onto spoken words.
  • Teachers use the Spelling and Beyond curricula to instruct students how written words map onto spoken words; that is, how to apply the alphabetic principle which is necessary for efficient spelling and reading. Spelling and Beyond incorporates approximately 5,000 content-area words that successful students acquire by the end of sixth grade. In addition to learning the words’ meanings and spellings, students learn the phonological, grammatical, and morphological structures of English.