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Tg wtw word_sorting
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Tg wtw word_sorting

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  • 1. Copyright © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. 1 Word Sorting Introduction This tutorial guide discusses the definition, approaches, types, benefits, and misconceptions of word sorting. What is Word Sorting? Word sorting is the process of grouping sounds, words, and pictures into specific categories. Word sorting is the heart of Words Their Way™: Word Study in Action. It includes teacher- directed instruction and independent student learning. Teachers begin word sorting by demonstrating how to sort pictures or word cards by sound or pattern. As students sort word cards or picture cards on their own, teachers help them make discoveries and generalizations about the conventions of English orthography, or spelling. Finally, students will compare and contrast word features such as consonants and digraphs so they can discover similarities and differences within the categories. Approaches to Sorting Word study experts in the professional development resource Words Their Way: Word Study for Phonics, Vocabulary, and Spelling Instruction explain two different approaches to word sorting: teacher-directed and student-centered. Words Their Way: Word Study in Action incorporates both of these approaches. Most introductory word sort tasks are teacher- directed, or closed, sorts. In teacher-directed sorts, teachers define the categories and model the sorting. In student-centered, or open, sorts, students create their own categories with a set of words. The directions are open for students to sort using one of several methods. Types of Sorts There are three types of sorts that correspond to the three layers of English orthography: alphabet, pattern, and meaning.
  • 2. Copyright © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. 2 Alphabet In an Alphabet sort, students compare and contrast words by sound. They do this so they can categorize similar sounds and associate them with letters and letter combinations, syllable patterns, and spelling conventions. For example, words spelled with –op like top, pop, and hop, are compared with words spelled with –ot like hot, cot, or pot. Pattern Next, students compare and contrast words by looking at consistent spelling patterns. For example, words spelled with –oi like join or coin, are compared with words spelled with –oy like joy or annoy. Both sets of words have the same sound, but each follows a unique spelling pattern.
  • 3. Copyright © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. 3 Meaning Finally, students categorize words and word parts by meaning, use, and parts of speech. For example, adjectives that end in –y like chilly, misty, or breezy are compared to adverbs ending in –ly like quickly, quietly, or smoothly. Benefits of Sorting Some of the benefits of word sorting are that it’s interactive, it promotes higher-level thinking skills, and it provides oral language development opportunities that build on students’ prior knowledge. Words Their Way: Word Study in Action also facilitates differentiated instruction by allowing you to choose appropriate practice opportunities for students based on their stage of development. It does not teach students to rely on rote memorization or recitation of spelling rules. Word sorts can also be used across content areas and in diverse classroom environments.
  • 4. Copyright © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. 4 Sorting Misconceptions One misconception regarding sorting is that it’s hands-on and voices off. Sorting is hands-on, but it’s certainly not voices off! Students use oral language and vocalize sorts independently, with partners or as a whole group. This helps cement their learning of word sorts. Another misconception is that words can only be sorted one time. Actually, mastery is proven by increased speed and accuracy within a sort. Sorts can and should be used multiple times. The last misconception about sorting is that there must be a specific feature for each sort. While there can be a specific feature or focus for a sort, student-directed or open sorts are a great way to tap into student thinking. These sorts will help teachers gain a greater understanding of your students’ thinking and learning. Review This guide looked at the definition, approaches and types of word sorts: alphabetic, pattern, and meaning. The benefits and misconceptions of word sorting with Words Their Way: Word Study in Action were also discussed. For more information on Words Their Way: Word Study in Action, please look for the other tutorials on myPearsonTraining.com.

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