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The Floss Rule

Have you ever wondered why some words have a double consonant at the end (such as sniff), while other words do not (such as dog and bat)?

The answer is easy–and we call it The Floss Rule. The Floss Rule is a really simple spelling rule that helps kids remember when to use a double consonant at the end of a word.

Check out The Floss Rule in this video, and then read on for free printable spelling rule posters and a sample lesson!

Why Do We Call It “The Floss Rule”?

The rule states that if a word has only one vowel and ends in F, L, or S, double the last letter.

The word floss is a perfect example of this rule, and it also contains the letters f, l, and s! That makes “The Floss Rule” a pretty handy name, doesn’t it?

infographic showing the floss rule for spelling

Tips and tricks like The Floss Rule are taught throughout the All About Spelling program. Want to see more? Download these two free resources to see just how easy teaching spelling rules can be.

Download All About Spelling Level 1, Step 18.
This lesson shows how we teach doubling a consonant at the end of one-syllable words.

pdf-icon-transparent-background2-small-p3

Download our free Spelling Rules Posters.
This handy resource will help make learning three important spelling rules easy and fun to remember for your children.

Do you have a favorite spelling rule that has made spelling easier for you and your child? I would love to hear about it in the comments below!

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Leave a Comment

KELSI

says:

Love the poster freebies

Katrina Rogers

says:

When I bring up this rule, it will cause my daughter to break out in that silly dance all the kids are doing.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Katrina,
Maybe the dancing will help her remember the rule too? Most things that are silly and active are easier to remember!

Donna

says:

Great program!

Jennie Lucas

says:

Love these fun, easy to remember rules!

Courtney

says:

We love AAS!

Christina

says:

My kids love finding words using this rule.

Laura

says:

I love “Floss”!!! I can’t wait to teach it to my students!!!

Thank you!!!

Stacey

says:

The rule about when to add “s” vs. “es” to make plural.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

That’s a great rule, Stacey! We have a poster and a blog post that includes that and other rules for making words plural. Making Words Plural

Wendy Clark

says:

Interesting, I did not realize this.

Sarah Jackson

says:

I don’t have a specific rule that made spelling easier…all of AAS has made it easier for my kiddo! I love how much this curriculum has empowered him to be a confident speller/learner.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Sarah,
I love that All About Spelling as a whole has made spelling easier for your kiddo! 😊

Megan

says:

Good review. Thanks,

Carol

says:

Thank you for your Floss Rule.

Christa Doucette

says:

This will be so helpful for my little ones. Thank you.

Sherley Yngfors

says:

Thank you for the wonderful spelling visuals! It is very helpful to be able to have the rules all together on the same page for each topic.

Angela

says:

Great tip! It took my son forever to remember the three letters, and he still struggles with it sometimes if we don’t review it often enough. I think this will help to give him a good visual1

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Angela,
Yes, I think it will help your son. Remembering the picture of the floss will help him to remember F, L, and S are the letters that get doubled. However, if he still struggles with this concept after using the rule and visual for a while, let me know.

Angela

says:

I definitely will. You guys are awesome!

Tamara H

says:

Thanks for the tip.

Nicole Little

says:

Very good tips

Rebecca G

says:

I never would have thought of this! Thank you!

Katie ericksen

says:

What a great tip

Crystal

says:

Thanks for the free downloads! I’ve heard a lot of good things about all about spelling.

Jade

says:

We just did this one. Love it.

Missy C

says:

I’ve taught for 15 years and these are new techniques for me! Glad to learn some new tricks

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Missy,
One of the joys of teaching, at least for me, is always learning too!

Tammy Lane

says:

Very helpful rule!

Sarah

says:

Didn’t know this! Thanks

Trina

says:

What a great way to remember!

Lindsey

says:

I have never heard of this rule! Thanks.

Marie McMillan

says:

Thank you for the posters! Great for the visual learners in home (including myself, ha!)
I have been using AAS for 5 years now and I absolutely love it!

Karen

says:

Helpful rule!

Heather

says:

Neat trick!

Amber

says:

I can’t wait to start using this with my son!

Cassidy Gibbs

says:

I would love to have this program!

Heather Pelletier

says:

Spelling is such a difficult topic to teach to an antsy 7 yr old little boy. I’m hope this will help him remember some of the rule “breakers”.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Heather,
Sometimes spelling is easier for active ones when you do fun review activities. You may find our 8 Great Ways to Review Spelling Word Cards blog post help. Let me know if you have questions or need anything.

Sarah

says:

This is so helpful! I cannot believe how much I’m learning along with my daughter. Thank you!

Margaret

says:

Good idea!

Staci L Channel

says:

Never heard of this before! Love how easy you make it to remember!!!

Julie Bryce

says:

I am thrilled with this program and especially spelling!!
Maybe a giveaway will happen soon…I’d. Love to win All About Spelling!!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Julie,
We are having an All About Spelling giveaway right now! And check back each month for the next giveaway.

Jeniver

says:

Love this spelling illustration! My son has improved SO much with AAS!

Loretta Dyches

says:

Absolutely love AAR & AAS. My children also love it and they are learning some much.

Glenda Groom

says:

I’m looking forward to checking out your books!

Glenda Groom

says:

I’m very interested in winning your contest!

Laurel

says:

I’ve followed your posts for a while and really love you curriculum. Looking forward to trying it!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Laurel,
Let me know if you have any questions about placement or anything else.

Sara

says:

My friends and I love AAS and AAR! Our kids are mixed ages and we’re passing the materials back and forth as each kid works through the curriculum. So far, it’s been a huge success with three of them, and our public school wants to know what we’re using!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

What a blessing that you can share materials with your friend, Sara! We have a blog post that your public school may be interested in, 12 Reasons Teachers Love All About Reading and All About Spelling.

Andrea

says:

As a parent, I really enjoy the straight forward easy to follow approach this program offers for my second grader. He has been excelling this year in both AAR and AAS!

Megan

says:

I love the poster that goes with the Floss Rule and think it will be a great visual reminder for my student!

Staci

says:

We love using this current in our family school. It’s taken mny attempts at multiple programs to teach my son to read. He literally picked up the concepts I. A mater of 2 lessons and now he’s speeding through the book. Thank you for this program

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Staci,
This is so wonderful! I’m excited to hear about the amazing progress your son is having. Thank you for sharing this.

Ellen

says:

This is a fun way to remember the single vowel/double consonants rule! Thanks!

Weenona Brannon

says:

This looks awesome. Looking forward to using this in my classroom this year.

Ashley

says:

That’s an interesting way to teach it. I was taught to simply memorize the spelling of those words without a rule involved, but that’s great for children who aren’t as intuitive about memorization!

stephanie nelson

says:

Thank you for the video and posters about the Floss rule. This will give my students the visuals that will help them with understanding this important spelling rule.

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

You’re welcome, Stephanie! I’m glad these were helpful! :)

Karla Hill

says:

Thanks for the great easy to remember tips!!

This will be a great addition to my resources when teaching spelling.

Jennie

says:

This is very helpful!

Mira

says:

My goodness, I really love the ideas you put online! Thanks so much

Shona Bevan

says:

Love your products. We use both AAS and AAR. And I use these with 4 of my children. I really enjoy these posts , sharing useful information.
Thanks for all your efforts

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Awww, you’re welcome, Shona!

Ann

says:

Great. Thank you.

Jennifer W

says:

I just love this Floss Rule it will help so much. The poster is another cute addition to the spelling wall.

jamie

says:

Awesome! Thanks!

Jessica Woodard

says:

Great idea! Why didn’t I think of that? I will be sure to teach this to my daughter!

Sandy

says:

I love All About Spelling. I feel like I have learned a more consistent way to spell since teaching the rules to my kids. Please make more of these videos. This was a great explanation of the rule. It is a great tool!

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

Thanks for your kind words, Sandy! We do have more videos about spelling rules in the works, coming soon! :)

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Sandy,
We will definitely keep on making videos like these, but it’s super nice to hear that you appreciate them! Thank you. You may like the All About Learning Press YouTube channel. It contains even more videos.

Jaclyn

says:

I’ve been a good speller since I learned to read in kindergarten. Now, as a mom who is beginning to teach my oldest son to read, I’m overwhelmed by the spelling rules (and many exceptions) in the English language. I’m excited to be able to learn some of these rules along with him!

Jocelyn

says:

I never heard of the Floss Rule until my daughter learned it!

Tamra Erickson

says:

I was listening to the video and my 3rd grade daughter came over to listen. She love it. Thank you.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

You’re welcome, Tamra! 😊

Georgia

says:

Thanks, Marie. The floss rule is so easy once it is understood and applied. You made it easier with this cute poster.

Nicole

says:

This is so simple and helpful. Thank you!

machele

says:

love the video, it is so true nothing can beat visual learning, you see it, you hear it, you remember it ! Love your practical site!

Lewy

says:

Great idea. We will try it.

Amy

says:

The floss rule is easy to remember. A great strategy for students to use! Thanks for sharing the free resources.

Paula

says:

Love the floss rule and thanks for the freebie posters. I sure would like to win the giveaway

Lisa T

says:

Hi
I have been using All About Spelling with my 11 yr old daughter. The floss rule has helped her remember when to double up f, l, and s. Since starting the program her spelling has soared. At one point I thought she had some type of learning problem, but come to find out she just needed phonics instruction. It has been so gentle and non frustrating for her I can’t be more grateful. Thanks so much.

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

Hi Lisa! You made a good point — sometimes lack of phonics instruction can make it appear as if a child has a learning problem, even if they don’t. I’m so happy to hear that your daughter is doing so well with the program!

Lois Nord

says:

The floss rule is just as easy as the help I’ve used of remembering: ” Sally loves fried zucchini.”

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

That’s a good way to remember the rule, too! Thanks for sharing, Lois! :)

Willie

says:

Learned something new! I have always done it, but I didn’t know why!

Tawsha

says:

Love it!

Duaa

says:

thank u its very useful 🙂

Brian

says:

Can’t say that I have ever heard of the floss rule. A new one to add to my arsenal in helping my kids spell.

MICHELLE HULL

says:

I LOVE the way spelling rules are broken down to teach any child why they are doing what they are doing. I am a speech therapist and the children that I have worked with often are not “catching” it. If it is not “caught” then it must be “taught”. Thanks for the teaching tools.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

What a great way to put it, Michelle! “If it’s not ‘caught’ then it must be ‘taught!'” Yes!

Joyce Gauvin

says:

Sounds like a fun way to learn.

Sarah

says:

Great way to remember this rule!

What about z, as in buzz, hizz, ..?

Marie Rippel

says:

Occasionally other consonants are doubled at the end of one-syllable words, too, such as Z (buzz, fizz), N (inn, Ann), D (add, odd), and G (egg), although not regularly enough to be added to the FLOSS rule. Thanks for asking! :)

Scott

says:

Love this tip! Thanks.

Vivian Marsh

says:

I am so glad that I signed up for these emails. Just when I feel like I don’t know how to explain something I get an email or remember one on that topic.
Thanks!!!

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

I love it when the right information shows up at just the right time! :) Welcome aboard, Vivian!

Kattrina Busby

says:

The posters are helpful. Thank you!

Jennifer

says:

So cool. I love that you guys take the extra work out of teaching spelling by finding neat patterns like this one.

Carol

says:

Thank you for this info. Veery helpful.

Dianne Williams

says:

I teach a chant for this rule:
One syllable,
One vowel,
then f,l or s
We double those letters
To avoid a big MESS!!

Ida

says:

Great!! Students love chants. I will have my students use it.

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

This is a great way to remember the rule! Thanks for sharing, Diane!

Amy

says:

I love getting these emails with bonus content to help me teach my kids spelling and reading!

Katie Jones

says:

I love this company!!!! I have been teaching for years and learn something new everytime I watch an episode.

Mary Ordille

says:

Such a helpful and engaging video for students.

Suzanne Gregory

says:

Cute way to present this rule!

Cindy Blanding

says:

Having been recently trained in OG, I began using AAS and the app with my student. I really like how simple the program is and the games help to hold her interest—thank you for the blog posts delivered right to email…I always check there!

Amber

says:

“C” says “sss” before i, e, and y

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

That’s another great rule, Amber!

Jess

says:

I showed my kids this video. I had said it to them tons of times but it didn’t stick but when he said it it clicked, go figure! Sometimes they just need to hear it from someone else. Thanks for posting this video, very helpful!

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

Haha! Glad it finally clicked for your kids! :)

Tristen

says:

Interesting! I’ve never heard it put that way. :)

Maggie Kenny

says:

I love the naming of the rule! It fits and will keep students interested!

Julie S

says:

I love this!

Shirley

says:

Love the way All about spelling clearly lays the rules!

Melissa

says:

Today, we came across the word “across,” which has the double s but is a two-syllable word. Is there a rule about these? AAS is helping my spelling-challenged children, slowly but surely. Thanks!

Oron

says:

I’m not sure about a rule,
but I think the fact that the word “across” has the base “cross” in it (in its meaning as well) is a hint for the doubling.
Handcuffs, uphill, every word ends with -less ; are all quite similar examples.

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

That’s a really good explanation, Oron. SS is used at the end of suffixes such as -ESS, -LESS, -NESS, and -RESS (for example, in the words princess, hopeless, shallowness, and waitress).

In addition, the double S helps distinguish plural from non-plural words. (In other words, a word such as ACTRESS wouldn’t be confused with a plural word. The -SS isn’t the full suffix, as it is in pickles and hinges.)

Leanna Howard

says:

I love using this curriculum with my kids. I learn so many rules right along with them. 😊

Sandi

says:

This sounds great I am going to try it with my grandson

Stephanie Fisher

says:

My son has been helped greatly by the rules for when to use c, k, or ck as well as what he calls the
“Yeti” rule to help decide if the c says “s” or “c.” He noticed the letters to determine that the c had the soft sound spelled Yeti minus the t. All of the rules have been helpful, but I think those are his favorites.

Marie Rippel

says: Customer Service

Your son came up with such a clever name for that rule! Great job! Thanks for sharing, Stephanie!

Sana

says:

Very helpful for me to teach!

P Nich

says:

Love how simple this is.

Michelle Meader

says:

This is a great video for teaching the floss rule. I love the great free resources and games for AAR!

Holly

says:

Love this memory cue!

Becky

says:

Such a great way to remember!

Amy S George

says:

I like this rule! I had never considered before which words have double letter endings. I just knew some did. This is a great way to teach it!

Robyn McLeod

says:

Love this rule 🙂

Tessa

says:

This is such a great little tool! Thanks for sharing!

Amanda

says:

We love All About Spelling! My son struggled with reading, spelling, and writing until we found this program.

C Streety

says:

Well said. Good program that works well for kids.

Shana

says:

Tips like these are helpful, even though there seems to be at least one exception to every “rule”. As a homeschooling parent on an extremely tight budget I appreciate the availability of a few free resources, now if we could only find a way to make learning these things free for all who need it, we’d really be doing something worth crowing about.

Melissa

says:

What a wonderful idea! These tips are always helpful!

Laura

says:

This is a great way to remember the rule!

Dana Rangel

says:

I love the creative name! Thanks for sharing.

CJ Lamica

says:

Perfect timing, we were just discussing special rules.

Dawn

says:

I love this rule. I worked through AAS with my two boys and now am doing them again with my daughter. This is a rule that works and is easy to remember!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Dawn,
It does! The Floss Rule is one of the easiest and most reliable ones to learn and it helps give kids confidence in their spelling.

Jennie

says:

This is a great idea!

Amy Novitski

says:

I never knew this rule! So interesting.

Robin Walton

says:

Thank you for the help.

Tiffany Thompson

says:

Awesome, thank you for the tips! My daughter has been working through All About Reading level 1 (even in the Summer) and we are just on the less with the double consonant at the end…these tips will definitely be helpful! =D

Janelle

says:

I’m glad I discovered these free posters! It will help my son to have visual reminders of the rules we have been learning.

Lori Caudle

says:

As a special education specialist, reading struggles are something that I deal with consistently. These posters are excellent visual resources that can create connections for students to remember the spelling rules that are so often elusive! I’m also going to use them with my grandson whom I do a lot of homeschooling with!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Lori,
Thank you! I appreciate your opinion on these posters with your experience as a special education specialist.

Julie Smith

says:

This video is very helpful!

Melissa

says:

This information is great. This will help all my children. Thank you.

Sherry

says:

These spelling rules are super helpful for my son who struggled to read, and therefore, spell. Somehow he has no trouble memorizing these rules and actually using them when we are doing spelling. We love the posters too and have printed and hung them in our home. Thanks!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Sherry,
Some children find memorizing rules easier than just memorizing words because rules have meaning and context while words can be just random letters. My kids always found memorizing with meaning and context much easier than memorizing random things.

Kristan Price-Wicks

says:

Thank you for the downloads! We are going to try out this method and see if it works for our kids.

Erica

says:

This is super helpful! Is there a consistent trick for double consonants in the middle?

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Eric,
There is a mostly consistent rule for when to double consonants in the middle of a word (like most English rules, there are exceptions).

The rule has to do with Syllable Division, which is taught extensively in both All About Reading and All About Spelling. A vowel in an open syllable is usually long. An open syllable is a syllable that ends in a single vowel with no consonant following it. Go and we are open syllables, as are the first syllables of maple, robot, and tiger. In contrast, the vowel in a closed syllable is usually short. A closed syllable is a syllable that has a single vowel followed by one or more consonants. Got and win are closed syllables, as are the first syllables of middle, rotten, and trigger.

When we divide syllables, we locate for the vowels and notice the consonants between them. If there is one consonant between the vowels, it usually goes with the second syllable, leaving the first syllable open and the vowel long. When we need a short vowel in the first syllable and there is only one consonant sound between the vowels, then the consonant needs to be doubled to protect the short vowel sound.

I’m sorry this is not a clear and easy explanation, but it’s a complex rule that requires students to understand short and long vowel sounds and how to identify open and closed syllables before learning when to double consonants and when to not. All About Spelling takes part of level 1 and part of level 2 to cover all the foundational skills needed for spelling two-syllable words with doubled consonants before asking students to do it in level 2.

Please let me know if I can clear this up further for you or if you have other questions.

Kristen I.

says:

What a great way to remember!!! Thank you for the information!

Amanda Brenci

says:

Awesome! Thanks!

Mrs A

says:

This may prove to be valuable to our homeschooling lessons, Thanks.

Jill Toth

says:

That is so simple & totally brilliant – thank you!

Lisa Dorsett

says:

I like the “ie”spelling rule. It is so good and important to learn spelling rules and it is a good reminder for us parents too! Thank you for the tips and will use the spelling poster!

Tera Glover

says:

I love this series. Currently on level 3. The perfect program for everyone including reading issues.

Megan

says:

Awesome!

Annette Miller

says:

So many handy things to help my struggling son.

I wish I had learned these spelling tricks when I was young!

Laurie

says:

These spelling tricks have helped so much!

Faisa

says:

This will be great for reviewing the lesson with my boys. Thanks

Cindy

says:

I appreciate all the tips all about spelling and all about reading have been giving.

Michele Olivieri

says:

Simple rules like this are what make All About Spelling so accessible and useful. They are especially great for kids with what I call “Math brain,” kids who get ideas through simple rules!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Michele,
I love your “math brain” description. I have a couple of kids that are “math brains”!

Meaghan

says:

Great rule! Thanks

Kassi Johnson

says:

This is great! My kids will love this!

Alyssa

says:

This is a great trick I am going to try with my son as he usually forgets to double these letters. Thanks!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Alyssa,
Let me know if this helps your son have success with these words or if he needs further help.

Aliesa G

says:

This is my daughter’s favorite spelling rule and she never misses these words since learning the rule!

Very clever. Thank you!

Ralph

says:

Thank you for sharing. We live in South Africa and are home schooling our granddaughter. We have not come across any information like this to assist us in teaching her, it will be an enormous help.

Helen

says:

I love fun rules like this because I never learned them!!

Megan

says:

Thank you for helping students and teachers!

Delina

says:

Thanks so much for all the help!

Sara R

says:

Any time that I can link a visual to a spelling rule, I love it! Thanks!

BARBARA

says:

Used these posters last year and my child definitely used them.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Thanks for letting us know that these posters were helpful for your child, Barbara.

SandraT

says:

these tips are so useful

Fran ONeill

says:

Love the floss rule!

Lisa Perkins-Jackson

says:

Thanks for this info

Maureen

says:

Thank you for the posters. If you ever decide to make them available as black and white line drawings (like coloring pages), please let me know! :)

Robin E. at All About Learning Press

says: Customer Service

What a good idea, Maureen! I’ll pass that idea along, and if they do it I’ll let you know.

Tami

says:

Love these tips … I would also love to download the advertised FREE printable Spelling Rules Posters, but the form to fill out to access the download is not available (at least for me!). Are these posters still available? Thanks!

Robin E. at All About Learning Press

says: Customer Service

Tami,
I’m sorry you are having this problem. These posters are still available. I don’t know what the problem is, but maybe if you try a different browser it’ll work. For example, if you are using Chrome, try Internet Explorer or Firefox.

If that doesn’t work, get back to me here or at support@allaboutlearningpress.com. Please let me know what browsers you are trying, so I can let our tech guy know.

Laura

says:

Why is z not included as consonant to double, buzz fuzz jazz?

Robin E. at All About Learning Press

says: Customer Service

Great question, Laura.

All About Spelling generally teaches a rule when it holds true about 97% of the time. Double Z doesn’t really fit in that category, so that’s why it’s not included. There are so few words that end in double Z, that they can also be handled as exceptions. The entire list of double Z words is: buzz, fuzz, fizz, and jazz (according to the book The ABC’s and All Their Tricks). Also know that some common words end in a single Z (quiz, whiz).

I hope this helps!

Christina

says:

This is a great explanation!

Roxann Keenan

says:

How can I print these posters off. I love them. Please let me know.

Roxann Keenan

Merry at AALP

says:

We don’t have posters of these unfortunately. We’ve had a number of requests for a printable version, so we’ll be looking at what we might be able to do in the next few months. I’ll email if we come up with something. Thanks for your interest!

Merry at AALP

says:

I emailed, but for those who might be reading this now–we do have posters available! The posters are available for download here:

http://info.allaboutlearningpress.com/spelling-rules-posters

Amanda

says:

This rule was so helpful to my daughter! Something I had never learned either!!!

Allison Lord

says:

What a great rule to help kids learn

MamaGames

says:

I’m on my 2nd kid working through AAS and I didn’t know to call it the FLOSS rule… my daughter is going to be pleased because she doesn’t always remember this one.

Kerrie

says:

I love how simplified this is!

Laurie

says:

What a simple rule! I never learned this as a child, but find it so helpful!

win

says:

How simple and easy! I knew there had to be a better way to simplify this spelling madness! Thanks!

Michelle

says:

This program has so many helpful ways to reinforce spelling that really work! This tip is just one of them.
Thank You!

Jeannine Firestenberg

says:

This was very helpful! Tips like this help my children and I visualize the rule in a fun way.

Allison Vega

says:

I’ve never heard this tip before! Thanks, very helpful!

Melanie

says:

My 6 year old was able to spell better because of this rule.

Cassie

says:

whoa. We learned this rule and I could remember it easily but my daughter had trouble with it. I’m going to tell her about this tomorrow!

Sherri

says:

This rule is neat. I never learned this way, but it would benefit my daughter.

Melissa

says:

I’m so thankful to have a memorable way to teach this rule.

Amy Cowan

says:

Great tip!

Andra

says:

This a great trick! Thanks for sharing it!

Jaime B

says:

We must be coming up on this rule in level 1 soon. This is a great rule! I never learned things like this growing up.

Lindsey Woolard

says:

We are working on remembering this rule this week! I like the idea of connecting it with floss.

Stephanie

says:

I’ve never heard this before. Hope it helps my daughter.

Penny Britza

says:

Very helpful..and I can use all the help I can get! THANK YOU!

Chris

says:

Love the graphic! Can’t wait to show it to my child even though we are past level 1. Thanks!

Amy

says:

Love it! I never knew that rule before. So helpful to know “the why” behind English!

Natalie

says:

Great tip, thanks!

Great tip! I never knew how to explain why some letters end up doubled.

Lindsay Seder

says:

I’ve never heard this tip for this rule. It’s one my daughter has trouble remembering so I’ll definitely be sharing it with her!

Michele Allen

says:

There are so many good tips that are so helpful to my child.

Monica

says:

Great tip!! Makes it very easy to remember the rule :)

sara

says:

You’re spot on with all the rules that apply to spelling. I wish I knew this information when I was in school. We sit and have t po memorize sight words and spelling tests and this is what students really need. Actually adults would benefit from the information you provide.

CyndiN

says:

Always love your tips, Marie!

Julie Tuttle

says:

I would love to have PDF files of the tips and tricks so that I could use them easily in our homeschool.

Merry at AALP

says:

I emailed, but for those who might be reading this now–we do have posters available! The posters are available for download here:

http://info.allaboutlearningpress.com/spelling-rules-posters

lisa amos

says:

love these tips and tricks!

Kelly Mattice

says:

I am very interested in these programs and found the above information very helpful.

Mel

says:

Great tips!

Tabs

says:

So simple!!! More please :-)

Leslie Bard

says:

What a great teaching technique.

Heidi K

says:

Interesting. I’ve never heard of this one.

Kathy

says:

This will help. We have been having trouble remembering this one.

Ashley Pittman

says:

This is a cute way to remember the rule. The difficult thing is when the child is not natural at spelling at all and needs to rules to not have exceptions. We’re already starting with many exceptions at level 2. I’m worried about higher levels.

Merry

says:

Hi Ashley,

Some kids definitely struggle more than others. Here are a couple of articles you might find helpful:

Effective Spelling Strategies: this one discusses the 4 main strategies (phonetic, rules-based, visual, and morphemic) that AAS teaches, so that you can help your child when there isn’t a clear rule to guide them:
http://www.allaboutlearningpress.com/effective-spelling-strategies

Then there’s this article on Making Reading and Spelling Stick so that you can use the various features most effectively: http://www.allaboutlearningpress.com/making-reading-and-spelling-stick/

My kids were both struggling spellers, and it can take a lot of patience and review, but they really do get there.

1, The All About Spelling program includes a variety of activities that reach kids through sight, sound, and touch–the SMI Method (Simultaneous Multisensory Instruction)

2, Concepts and rules are taught incrementally. Students master one rule and learn to apply it before learning another one.

3, the program has the students teach the concept back through demonstrations with the letter tiles. When a student can explain a concept back to you, he or she is more likely to remember it. Then they practice writing the words (and you can also incorporate kinesthetic and tactile review methods).

4, Dictations. The program includes dictation phrases and sentences (they gradually get longer as you progress through the program) that continue to review previously learned words.

5, Each step has built in review. After the student spells the words with tiles and/or writes them, the Phonogram, Sound, Key, and Word Cards learned in that lesson are put behind a “review” tab. These are reviewed daily, and get moved to mastered when the student can spell them correctly without hesitation–without having to stop and think or self-correct. (I like to wait until a Monday to move cards to “mastered”–I found if my kids remembered after the weekend, words and concepts were more likely to be retained long-term!)

If at any time the student is struggling to remember a concept, you can put that card back into daily review.

6, We also include “mastered” reviews of the cards. The first step in every Level reviews all of the previously learned phonograms, sound, and key cards, and any word cards you want to review (you can cover tricky words, a sampling from each step of the previous level, or do all the words from the previous level). Also in the middle of each level there is another “mastered” review to go over any cards mastered in that level.

Please know you can contact us any time with questions or for additional support. We’re here to help!

Jennifer Tam

says:

I just read through the “Floss” tips on doubling letters at the end of the word, and the same confusion is here: “Use the FLosS rule, except for these common words that don’t use it.” I understand how to remember no doubling is the s makes the /z/ sound. But gas, plus, if, chef, gal, etc put me right back at the beginning when my child says “well, why not?” Am I missing another part to this tip?

Merry

says:

Hi Jennifer,

First, I always praise kids when they are observant about noticing words that are different. This will help them to become good spellers!

Unfortunately with English, most rules are not 100%. However, in AAS, we teach the rules (key cards) that hold true about 97% of the time. In this lesson, we include this note:

“We double the f, l, and s after a single vowel in hundreds of words, but there are several common words in which we do not double the last letter. Your student has already learned six of those words: if, gas, yes, this, us, and bus.”

One way to help kids understand how reliable a rule is, is to get 100 of something–beans, pennies, cheerios, legos, etc… and have them sort the items into two piles–one with 3 and one with 97. The three stands for the exceptions, and the 97 stands for the words that follow the rules. So yes, unfortunately they do have to learn some exceptions visually or through other means of memorizing them, but most will follow the rule.

I hope this helps!

Cherie

says:

Thanks for the wonderful tips that help my children remember spelling rules.

Emily

says:

Floss… definitely a helpful hint!

Sherry

says:

That does make it more simple to remember!

sarah

says:

Another great tip.

Rachel

says:

Great tips!

Anna Arvidson

says:

What a fun way to present a rule!

Marie

says:

My daughter is able to remember the f,l,s rule so easily with the floss trick! Thank You! We will never be able to look at a pack of floss without thinking about it!

Vivian Beekman

says:

I love the floss rule. What a great way to remember those double letters!

Anita

says:

I like the visual! It makes remembering the rule so much easier!

Jackie Barbey

says:

I love all the tips to help teach my children how to spell:)

Danielle Hull

says:

I love these tips! I am a “natural” speller, but I love learning these in order to help my kids! Thanks!

Gina

says:

Yes, it’s a great program. We started it with my dysgraphic son and now his school has picked it up to work with lagging students. It’s easy enough they can get parent volunteers to do the tutoring. It’s been a big hit. The kids are asking to do it and my son who’s making slow steady progress called it a turbo boost for his spelling.

Merry

says:

Wow, that’s great, Gina! Thanks for sharing!

Diane Strickland

says:

Great tip and graphic! Thanks

Michaela Cooper

says:

I need to buy this program!!!

sabrina

says:

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this simple trick! I’ve pinned this for future reference. :)

Nancy

says:

Great tip! I think this will really help my kids.

Jen

says:

Looking forward to starting this program!

Tara

says:

Great idea!

Jennifer S

says:

We’ve memorized the rule already, but I like having a word to help remember it!

Sally

says:

The more I discover the rules, the easier it becomes to explain to a group of first and second graders. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge.

Juli Vrotney

says:

That is a cool trick. Thanks for sharing it.

Kathryn

says:

Great tip!

Jennifer g.

says:

I love this!!! I never knew that trick. Thank you!!

Meghan finch

says:

Thanks, I love this tip!

Candi Duncan

says:

Thanks so much! My son does so much better when he has a rule to follow

Ayesha

says:

Thanks, This was very helpful. keep it up.

Deb

says:

Great idea!

Natasha Stringam

says:

Wow, I never knew about the floss rule. What a handy way to remember. Love it!

Beth

says:

Great tip!

Kristen

says:

It helps having not just the rule, but also the exceptions in one place. Wish you had a printable version. I did manage to print it without the top and the bottom, but the important things still all on the page. We’ll be reviewing this when we do today’s lesson. He doesn’t have a problem with the rule, it’s the exceptions that trip him up.

Merry

says:

Hi Kristen,

I’m glad that helped! Yes, unfortunately there’s no way to get around just having to memorize the exceptions. I always kept those word cards in daily review a lot longer for my kids. When they really struggled, I’d have them just read the word cards for several days in a row, and each day note which rule the word didn’t follow. Then we’d go back to working on spelling it. That extra work of getting them to notice the spelling pattern and explain it helped the word to stick in their minds. It takes time, but your son will get it!

Merry at AALP

says:

By the way, we do have a printable version now. The posters are available for download here:

http://info.allaboutlearningpress.com/spelling-rules-posters

Keri

says:

This is such a helpful tip. Thanks for sharing! :)

Kayla

says:

I shared these tips with my niece in high school. Which she did not know. She does well in school but is not the strongest speller. To much trying to memorize and not actual teaching. Thank you

Adrienne

says:

This tip is great, are there any printables for tips/tricks to keep out as handy references? Thanks

Merry

says:

We don’t have posters of these unfortunately. We’ve had a number of requests for a printable version, so we’ll be looking at what we might be able to do in the next few months. I’ll email if we come up with something. Thanks for your interest!

Merry at AALP

says:

I emailed, but for those who might be reading this now–we do have posters available! The posters are available for download here:

http://info.allaboutlearningpress.com/spelling-rules-posters

Sonja Z

says:

Wow, this is another easy way to remember how to spell!

Cyndy

says:

This is a great way to remember! I’ll definitely use it.

jess benoit

says:

I love this one…thank you!

Jill G

says:

We love all about spelling. The floss rule will make it easier for my daughter to remember the rules.

Marcie

says:

Great way to remember this spelling rule. Thank you!

DeAna

says:

Very helpful, thank you.

Pam

says:

Great way to remember this spelling rule. My daughter loves things like this.

Britnie

says:

What a GREAT way to demonstrate this rule! I love the visual!

Carrie S

says:

Love how you’ve packaged this principle in a way that is cute and easy to remember. Very effective!

A C

says:

This has really helped my girls !

Sara

says:

That is helpful! Thanks!

Ranie Jordan

says:

Neat tip! I don’t remember learning this 30+ years ago… There was a great deal of memorization; something that came easily for me, but I watched many of my peers struggle with it. Our kids are both excellent readers, but terrible spellers! I’m going to bookmark this! Thank you!

Kimberly

says:

Love things like this that helps you remember!

Autumn Jones

says:

Rules like this make teaching spelling so much easier! I never would have worked out that rule on my own. The other day, as we were doing the flashcard for the floss rule, my son said, “You know, that sounds like it should be really confusing, but once you know it, it’s easy.” Thanks for making spelling easy. :)

Kathy Sothman

says:

Rules like this make learning fun!

Elaine

says:

Great tip!! Thanks!

Christy Mccort

says:

Very clever name! This will really help my kids remember the rule.

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