Spelling City- how to practise for the Spelling Bee competition

If you want to practise your spelling skills for the Spelling Bee competition, you can use spellingcity.com. Your teachers will give you a username and password to access the website. With it, you can study the words on the list, test yourself on those words, and play games to help you remember them. While you do all those things, you will be listening to the words being pronounced, spelled, you will see examples where those words are used…

Watch this tutorial to know how to browse the website to improve your spelling:

Good luck!

spelling- common mistakes

Click on the picture to revise typical spelling mistakes. Pay attention so you will never make them again!

How to improve your English (year 1)

Now that the second term is almost over, maybe we can have a look at this list of activities, apps and resources you can use to improve your English, and particularly some skills that might be more complicated to you. All my recommendations are free, or at least have some functionalities which are free.

Using a dictionary: 

At this level, you should really be using an English-English dictionary, and only use a Spanish-English dictionary from time to time.


These are my recommendations for online dictionaries:

  • Oxford dictionary: English-English dictionary, with definition and pronunciation of the word. You can also use the thesaurus, if you want to find synonyms (and you really should).

  • Cambridge dictionary: English-English, Spanish-English dictionary, with definitions, pronunciation of the words (British and American), and phonetic transcription.
  • Macmillan dictionary: English-English dictionary, with definition, pronunciation, and very good thesaurus.


Spelling City– On this website you can create your lists of words you know you have to learn. They may come from our literacy classes, or from Social /Natural Science. Then, click on “play game”, and you can practise the words you wrote but playing games, not just memorising. It will be easier for you to remember both spelling and pronunciation.

Tutorial on how to register with Spelling City and create lists to play games.

In any case, reading is what is going to help you the most. (More about reading later)


  • For most words, go to any of the dictionaries I mentioned above.
  • For countries and place names, people, (and for all other words) you can visit this website: FORVO. Real native speakers (not computers) have recorded themselves pronouncing these words and names for you.

Type the word or name you need, then look it up:

Then you can choose if you want to listen to a British person pronouncing the word, or American, or Australian…



Apart from the books I recommended at Christmas, there are some books in English you can borrow from the school library. You have quite a few by Roald Dahl, for example. Please visit the library. You will get a Class Dojo point if you tell me examples of books in English you could borrow from the library (because you’ve had a look there).

Reading books, comics, articles online…is going to help you understand better, but it will also help you with your writing and spelling. 


In the English Department there are some films you can borrow, and that can help you improve your English. Please ask me.

You can also visit the British council Learn English section on listening. Choose exercises for A2 level, and if that’s too easy, take B1.

Possessive ‘s

Watch this video to remember how to spell possessive ‘s, and check your notes:

(Click on this link if you can’t watch the video, or there is any problem).

English around you

Una buena actividad de principio de curso en el aula de inglés puede ser darse cuenta de que el inglés está a nuestro alrededor, constantemente. Por ejemplo, en la publicidad, o en centenares de camisetas. Os dejo algunos ejemplos que juegan con las palabras para lograr su efecto (bien para potenciar el consumo, bien para efectos humorísticos).



4U= for you /juː/

4U — four euros /ˈjʊə.rəʊz/


Friday /ˈfraɪ.deɪ/   vs. Fry Day /’fraɪ ‘ deɪ/


Se pueden usar estos ejemplos para ver dobles sentidos de las palabras, expresiones figuradas, o para insistir en la poca utilidad de la traducción literal al español para entender el significado de los mensajes.