Fun Free No-Prep Grade 1 Spelling

Hi Everyone!

One of the lessons I teach every single day is spelling. Although I don't call it spelling; I call it Word Work.

There are lots of different things we do involving our word wall, but whatever it is, I like to keep it as fun and engaging as I can.

Here's a small sampling from last year.

Rainbow words, shaving cream, graffiti spelling and more

Rainbow Spelling (top left)

This is my version of rainbow spelling. I give the kids a blank piece of letter-size paper and we fold it into 8 sections. That alone is a worthy skill to practice. Ask any Grade 1 teacher! :)

Then I dictate phonics words we've been working on. In this case it was short vowels we were practicing. What made this fun? The felt pens of course! There's nothing earth-shaking here, but if you haven't tried this, you'll be surprised at how much the kids loved writing each word in a different colour.

Shaving Cream Spelling (top right)

This is an oldie but goodie and it's especially fun to do when the desks are grubby. I don't do this one too often 'cause it DOES take a little time for the clean up but it's always a huge hit!

Mix It Up (bottom left)

When we're doing simple dictations from the Word Wall, I like to mix up the materials as much as I can. Here we're using white boards. But sometimes we use notebooks, sometimes fancy spelling paper, sometimes mini chalkboards. I've also used ripped brown paper bags, post-it notes, large foam shapes, wrapping paper, paint, play-doh ... pretty much anything that's a little out of the ordinary!

Graffiti Spelling (bottom right)

This is always a huge hit. I spread a huge piece of paper onto some grouped desks (or a large table) and 6 to 8 kids practice spelling wall words they're having difficulties with. I leave it up to them to choose. The challenge is to make each word look colourful and funky.

Spelling graffiti is a huge hit!

You Might Also Like (and those links lead to freebies):
  1. Tic tac toe spelling. We use spelling words instead of x's and o'x to write in the squares.

  2. Word Wall Bingo which is always a huge hit!

What fun stuff do you like to do during Word Work (or Spelling)?


  1. Thanks for sharing the great ideas that are so easy but so fun!! Hope you are having some fun this summer!

    1. You're very welcome:)
      I sure am ... lots of hikes and family stuff! I hope your summer is good too.

  2. Fun ideas! Kids always love shaving cream spelling! I love how you do the graffiti spelling by having each one choose the word they need to focus on to learn. Great way for them to take ownership of their learning. :)
    Conversations in Literacy

    1. Thanks, Lori. And happily most kids will try very hard to work on their own tricky words.

  3. I like the way you do rainbow spelling. Nice easy ideas!

    First Grade Found Me

    1. Thanks. I have to admit it's easier this way than going over each word in multiple colours. I could never get the kids to do it the right way :)

  4. I so enjoy ideas like this and mixing it up for the kids. The more they can mess the words, the better.

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