Most of the lessons include a video & exercise. Scroll down for Spelling Rules, Top Ten Spelling Tips, Back to Basics (days, months and numbers), How Words are Built, Letter Patterns, Commonly Confused words (homophones), and much more.

Check out my spelling courses with new videos, exercises, spelling tests, and PDF revision sheets on
Spelling Rules: to improve spelling & confidence at - click here
How to Punctuate your spelling - a no-nonsense guide to using apostrophes, capital letters, abbreviations and hyphens - click here

For 1:1 spelling lessons on Skype or FaceTime with Joanne Rudling click here

Top Ten Spelling Tips (to help you better understand spelling and stop you getting frustrated with it)
Spelling tip 1: Spelling vs. Reading
Spelling tip 2: Understand why English spelling is so confusing
Spelling tip 3: How to remember & stop forgetting spellings
Spelling tip 4: Spelling vs. Speaking
Spelling tip 5: Use memory tricks
Spelling tip 6: Use syllable breakdown
Spelling tip 7: Take an interest in words
Spelling tip 8: The do's and don'ts of spelling
Spelling tip 9: Knowing spelling rules (The Top Ten Spelling Rules)
Spelling tip 10: Use it or lose it! Revision of the Top Ten Spelling Tips

The Top 8 Spelling Strategies
Check out Your Spelling Stories

For parents, homeschoolers and teachers - please click here

The Foundations
Spelling Strategies- to help you remember difficult spellings
Look Say Cover Write Check

How Words are Built
Building words with prefixes & suffixes part 1 - intro
Building words with prefixes & suffixes part 2 - prefixes
Building words with prefixes & suffixes part 3 - suffixes
Building words with prefixes & suffixes part 4 - the spelling rules

Some important language and terms to know
Long and short vowel sounds word contrasts
Glossary of terms/ language of spelling
What is Standard English?

Back to Basics Course
Module 1 - spelling days of the week
Module 2 - spelling months of the year
Module 3 - appointments & time of day
Module 4 - numbers 1 to 10
Module 5 - numbers 11 to 20
Module 6 - numbers 20+
Module 7 - ordinal numbers
How to spell ordinal numbers - 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th...
how to spell: forty

Spelling Rules
Why learning spelling rules is useful
Spelling rules quiz and why some rules are the way they are.
Magic 'e' Silent 'e'
Drop the 'e' Rule
The i before e Rule
1:1:1 doubling up rule
Silent Letters- the history & rules
The letter c
Adding all, full, till to words
The rules & spelling of write, writing, written, wrote
'y' to 'i' rule
The double 'l' spelling rule
-ck & -ke endings

Plural Rules information
y to ies or s plural rule
Adding -es plural rule
Making words ending in O plural
Plural -ves or -fs rule

Common Endings
Adding -ly
Only use full when full - adding -ful to words
Patterns & rules for words ending in -le
Words ending in -tion, -sion, -cian
Spelling words with -ible-or-able
-cial & -tial
Three tricky -ent words

Shorty Spelling Rules (revision videos)
Shorty magic 'e' silent 'e'
Shorty drop the 'e' with -ing
Shorty 1:1:1 doubling up rule
Shorty doubling up longer words
Shorty adding -es to words
Shorty adding -ful to words
Shorty changing 'y' to 'i' for happy
Short silent revision video on adding-ly

Letter Patterns
Letter patterns & word families
letter pattern poem- spelling v speaking
How to spell the "sh" sound
Words with the -gh- letter pattern
Why is there a 'w' in two?
One & once word family & pronunciation
spelling the 'f' sound

Commonly confused words + homophones
What are homophones?
there, they're, their
to, too, two
a lot of or lots of
of and off
lose and loose
"Will not = won't, why?"
quit, quite, quiet
though, through, thorough, thought
your & you're
accept and except
alright or all right?
Which which/witch is which?
stationary or stationery?

Common misspelled words
how to spell: definitely
how to spell: argument and separate
how to spell: forty
Three tricky -ent words (excellent, independent, different)

Spelling v Pronunciation
Spelling v pronunciation- letter pattern poem
Spelling tip number 4 - Spelling vs Speaking.

British vs. American Spellings
British v American Spellings - info & video
Why do Brits and Americans spell the same words differently? Guest video
-ise or -ize?

Punctuation - to help your spelling and writing
I am to I'm
Mr/Mrs or Mr./Mrs. - dot or no dot?
Why Punctuation is Important 1
Why Punctuation is Important 2
Using capital letters
Apostrophes 1 - contractions/short forms
Apostrophes 2 - possession
Using apostrophes in single digit numbers and letters
Over-the-shoulder videos with exercises and lessons on commas, apostrophes and QTS teacher training practice papers
The Comma a Tiny but Powerful Tool by Patrick Cole

Videos from Oxford Dictionary
The # and @ symbols
The dollar, pound and yen symbols

Expert Spelling Advice from Joanne Rudling - my blog on Ultimate Spelling website
Quick lesson on memory and the brain

Other videos/podcasts
Using memory aids to remember spelling
Misspelled words memory tricks by Gelene Marie
The Inside Story of English Spelling by Paquita Boston- guest podcast
Spelling for Life by Lyn Stone - guest podcast
Silent letters pronunciation
History of English in 10 minutes
*Video - Why we need to fail by Derek Sivers
*Video - It's a good day to make mistakes - the perfectionism cure

Word Endings by Johanna Stirling (PowerPoint presentation)

Other Lessons/Posts Want to write a post for how to spell? Then click here
How to Learn and Remember New Word by Nick Cowan
Reliable Ways To Boost Your Memory And Spelling Skills by Cassie Steele
5 Spelling Mistakes that Escape Spellchecker by Sreeram Sreenivasan
How I fought dyslexia and started a successful life by Chris Mercer
Write More: That Helps Your Spelling by Julie Petersen
How to Improve Your Spelling Skills Having Fun by Huge Beaulac
How Could You Use Poor Spelling as a Job Interview Weakness? by Brenda Berg
6 Punctuation Rules You Must Ever Overlook by Ethan Miller
7 Ways handwriting improves spelling by Sophia Mest
5 Apps to Help with Dyslexia by Mary Fenson
Lost and Found - Error Hotspots by Joan Selby
Common ESL Spelling Mistakes by Andrew Howe
Free Online Courses & Resources by Veronica Hunt
Is TextSpeak a Different Language? by Jonathan Emmen
What Your Writing Tells About You by Diana Beyer
The Benefits of Right Spelling in Your Career by Linda Craig
Writing Numbers by Lucy Adams
Ways to Organize your Workspace (infographic) by Emily Johnson
Useful Spelling and Writing Apps by Sally Sonderson
Do you Make These Common Mistakes in English? by Lynn Usrey
Too clever to spell by Jessica Salter Telegraph article

Writing skills
Using Morning Pages to Improve Your Writing by Dina Indelicato
7 Best Writing Tools by Mary Walton
13 Useful Tools to Improve Your Writing by Lesley Vos
10 Free Resources for Improving Your Grammar and Writing Skills by Maria Castle
Tips and Tricks for Writing a Perfect Essay by Kiara Halligan
7 Easy Tips to Improve Your Writing by Paige Donahue
Essential Writing Tips, Tools & Books For Your Self-Education by Julie Petersen
Top 10 Online Editing Tools to Craft a Perfect Paper (and any writing!) by Antonio Tooley
How to Develop Your Writing Talent by Alice Depp
Power Writing 101: How to Write for Long Term Success by John Cabrera
Top Essay Online Writing Resources by Robert Morris
Ten Tips to Improve your English Writing Skills by Jessica Millis
Brush up Your Writing Skills by Julie Carr

Proofreading corner
Proofreading – do we really need to do it? by Gerard Armstrong
Editing and Proofreading: What is the difference? by Margaret Reid
Common Writing Mistakes that Spell Check Won't find by Kelly Smith
5 Steps to Proofreading and Editing Like a Pro by Lesley Vos
8 Useful Tips on Editing Your Writing by Lois Weldon

Joanne Rudling interviewed by Little London Magazine How to Help Your Child Learn to Spell
How technology is influencing education in the 21st century by Alma Causey
How teaching in classrooms is evolving to teach social responsibility to kids by Alma Causey
5 Pieces of Technology Our Homeschool Couldn't Do Without by Annabelle Fee
How to Teach Spelling So Kids Will Remember by Annabelle Fee
4 Fun Winter Activities for Homeschool Scientists by Jenny Wise
How to Keep Your Cooped-Up Kid Engaged and Learning Online When the Rain is Falling by Jenny Wise
Guidelines for Parents to Help Your Child Talk About Their School Day by Sam Evans
Benefits of Coding for Kids by Holly Clark

Click here for some worksheets to print off

Click here for people's stories & what they've said about their spelling.

Click here for the books I recommend on spelling, the history of spelling/English, dictionaries and books on writing.

Most people think English spelling is crazy and illogical. It's true there are irregular spellings because it includes lots of words from other languages.

The good news - there are rules, patterns and reasons why some words are spelled the way they are. So it's important to start taking an interest in words, the history, see the patterns and rules, and gain confidence in your spelling. And then you'll learn to love it.

Spelling matters. We need to write emails, application forms, Facebook, Twitter, course work, work reports, and helping your children. You need to be able to spell correctly to get your meaning across so people can understand you.

Using a good dictionary and the spellchecker on the computer can help but it won't help with homophones (same sound, different spelling and meaning: there,their, they're, to, too, two, been, bean.) Or silent letters

Recent Comments - I'll respect their privacy so just initials.

Thank you for your commitment to helping us learn to spell. I have never met a more comforting person that I feel I can trust to teach me how to spell. Your voice and encouragement is amazing. I have gone through all the tips. I would like to do lessons everyday and learn more from you. Thank you so much, Julie, Boston, USA

Hi Joanne, many thanks for the email lessons. Just to let you know I am still practising but not as often as I'd like too. I have improved a lot with all the help I have received from you, many thanks. I will not be giving up, so please keep your emails coming. Hope you are ok. Kind regards, Christine

I frequently recommend your website to others as I am really impressed with the quality of your resources. I work with adults in a range of educational settings and I've really benefitted from working on my spellings. I feel more confident, but also more interested in words and I'm able to share what I'm learning with the learners/students with whom I work.
Kind Regards

I think Joanne's website How to spell is the best way to learn the
art of spelling. After leaving school in year 8 I have always struggled with spelling, even the most simple words. I'm now 39 years old and I recently sat an exam for year twelve and passed with a mark of 95% for my spelling. I hope she always has these resources available so others can benefit from her knowledge. B.H.

Hello Joanne, I am an English Teacher and always interested in
learning spellings. I am really enjoying your lessons and gaining a lot out of them. I could not resist replying to you to say thanks. Waiting for more lessons. S

Thanks for the informative and insightful e-mails. The one on silent
letters and rules is very helpful. My son who is six, refuses to "silence" these silent letters but hopefully the rules mentioned by you will help to make it less confusing for him.
Thanks again,

Just to let you know that I have just finished a course on taking blood and passed.
Now I can take blood from my patients which makes my job more interesting . I would not have considered doing this a year ago. I did not have the confidence to do so. Look at the words I am spelling consider and confidence I would have to have looked them up in a dictionary before I started this spelling course . Can you see that I have improved over the weeks? (I hope I don’t sound a big head but I am so please my spelling is getting better ). Annette

Joanne’s how to spell website is the best spelling learning web. It has
helped me a lot to improve my spelling skills in addition to boosting my confidence. Thank you Joanne!!!!!!! R.A,

Dear Joanne,
I would like to say thank you very much for your hard and useful work! All the best wishes to you! Sincerely yours, Irina :-)

I nominated your, howtospell web site, already. Honestly, in my
opinion, your website is one of the best in Internet. I hope that you will get any awards, you really deserve it, for your time. Have a lovely day, Best wishes, T

Thanks for the spelling lessons! It helped me alot to pass English test for an airline company. A,

Hi Joanne, Thank you for sending your tips. I've read them and found everything very interesting. Moreover, what comes out from your texts is a joyful feeling of simplicity and speed. No empty talk, just important things to put into practice. Great job! I look forward to receiving lessons and/or whatever else. Best regards, Ant...

Found this site to be really helpful. Helped me improve my spelling (always room for improvement), finding that I do rely on spell checker far too much. Some handy hints and games I found really useful. Thanks very much Phil.

Hi Joanne, I would like to thank you for all the help you have given me. It is indeed a great help and a great job you are doing again thanks so much. P

You don't know how much you are helping me, looking at your videos is sooooo helpful could you please keep sending me what you are sending. Adan

Hi Joanne,
Thank you for the emails. I would very much like you to continue sending these e-mails, they have been very helpful for me to teach other kids. I know that I have not replied or conveyed my appreciation to you for the great effort you put in every time you send an email. Here's a big thank you for all that you do. Warm regards, M.K.

Thank you , really I have learned something new. Little by little ithelps me more ... Keep on sending me these lessons as they are useful to me. From Muhammad

Thank you so much for the lessons. I have found them very helpful and I'm already getting ahead in my spelling. I feel more confident now when I don't use my computer to write because of the tricks I have learned. Thank you. Regards, S. K.

My daughter has a big exam today and she needs to know when to write -sion and when to write -tion and so I looked it up and that's how I got to u and i want to thank you C.R.H

I love your website and tell all my Anglophile and Francophile friends how instructive it is for students of English.
All the best, M. R.

May this year see you quite inspired so that you can help teachers like me help our students master the art of spelling! Thanks so much for all the guidance you have been giving us! Lots of love and appreciation from everyone. Asif

Just sent off an email to a friend and as I was going over it and checking it for mistakes I really didn’t have to do that much to it this time. After I sent it to her I thought how much better I can spell now and how you played a big part in my improvement in that area. Don’t think for one minute that I’m not working on my spelling, or I’m not thinking about you. To say the least you are a very special lady! F.R.

Many thanks for your emails. I've watched your new homophones video. I'll definitely try to follow your guidelines. By the way, I've found your guest writer Julie Carr's web-links very very handy. S.D.

Hi Joanne, Thank you so much for your emails. I am so happy to get every new one. I like to review them and read it again. Your help is appreciated and looking forward to learn more from you. Thank you and regards, Olga

Hi Joanne, Yes, these are very useful and my class (I'm hoping) are improving their spelling. Thank you, Sharon

Hi Joanne, Thank you again, I love your emails! Every time just waiting for a next one. Best regards, O.E.

I am really enjoying the lessons and have been using them with my students. Please continue to send the lessons to me. They are a great resource for my own grammar review! Thank you so much, Renée

Thank you for all your hard work and help. Teaching spelling is always difficult but your lessons have made my role easier. Chris, Australia

Hello Joanne, I just wanted to say that I enjoy getting your emails and that I sometimes use them in my lessons, with my learners. May I take this time to wish you a Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year. God Bless Margaret

Thank you for helping me with my spelling. Your explanations in all of your videos help me greatly into improving my spelling. am looking forward to learn more spelling techniques from you in the new year. Reza.

Hi Joanne, I've learned a lot of ways to spell from your website, and it is helpful when I get an email from you every Monday with new words to learn. I am in college writing so far I am doing good thanks to you. I got both of your books to help me. Thank you again. Ikram

If you'd like to support How to Spell, please feel free to donate, no matter how small - every little helps! Thank you.