One of my darlings was having major problems with spelling and failing the weekly spelling tests horribly so I was in search of some type of intensive intervention that would help him. He was struggling with writing very simple words that I know were on the 1st and 2nd grade Word Walls. I started doing some research and kept stumbling upon what was called the "Cover, Copy, Compare" method. It is so simple to implement. We started right away. I made packets to keep at my small group table. I also made some packets to send home for practice. Basically, all you need is a copy of your spelling list, paper, an index card, and a pencil. The student copies the first word directly from the spelling list, then covers the newly copied word (and the list), writes the word from memory, and then checks it for accuracy. If it is not correct the student just repeats the process until it is correct and moves on. We did this every morning during our in-school tutoring block and replaced his current spelling homework with this activity to be done nightly. Thursday he took a practice test and by Friday he had the words down. He not only passed his first spelling test in the 3rd grade, but he made a 92. I was so proud of him, but most importantly he felt successful and motivated to keep up this level of practice. He was PROUD of himself. That was my main goal.
I think this would probably work beautifully in practicing math facts as well. I can't wait to see what he scores this Friday! I just love these moments when I am reminded in a big way why I became a teacher in the first place. Makes it all worthwhile!
PS- You can grab the cover to the packet here! Toodles!