Document Type

Graduate Project

Date of Degree Completion

Summer 1997

Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)



Committee Chair

Nancy E. Jurenka

Second Committee Member

Gail Goss

Third Committee Member

Joe Schomer


Literature regarding the early developmental processes of (1) writing, (2) spelling, and (3) phonemic awareness for children between the ages of five and seven were reviewed. The literature stated that all three of these processes develop simultaneously through a series of very specific stages. Writing in kindergarten and first grade needs to be practiced daily and treated like a free activity without restriction of copious spelling rules. It was further regarded that spelling should be considered a life long evolving skill that should not stifle the early writer. A program to guide teachers as they help first grade children to become young writers was created. This program incorporated the current Washington state mandated Essential Learnings from the Commission on Student Learning. Real classroom experiences were discussed and children's writing samples illustrated certain developmental stages.