SPELD SA's Six-Minute Sessions

Students need regular practice with reading and spelling to achieve automaticity. As some students have a very short attention span, the following activities have been selected to provide the necessary repetition in very short bites. The aim is for the student to work within their concentration span and to achieve success.


  • If a student is not concentrating, they are not learning, and
  • Success breeds confidence and confidence breeds success.

The goal of the six-minute sessions is to provide:

  • A bit of reading
  • A bit of writing, and
  • A bit of fun

Activities can be done as separate 2-minute sessions or combined. Set a timer for two minutes. Stop the activity the moment the buzzer goes. At this point, the student is free to go. If the student wants to continue, the adult is free to go!

To introduce an element of chance to the choice of activity:

Write the activities on 3 sets of cards: Reading, Writing, Fun. Fan out the cards for one set at a time and ask the student to pick a card.

Reception curriculum and above

Reading Activities—2 Minutes (Download PDF)

Handwriting, Spelling and Writing Activities—2 Minutes (Download PDF)

  • Learning letters and their sounds
  • Trace and Say
  • Sound fingers
  • Beat the clock (use cut-up post-it stickers to create as many words as possible with a set of letters and write each word on a list on paper or mini- whiteboard) (How many words can they make and write in 1 minute)
  • Folding books
  • Write a sentence that includes three given words that they can read. Phonetically ‘legal’ representations are the expectation for reception students eg bort (bought)

Year 1 curriculum and above

Reading activities–2 minutes (Download PDF)

  • Count graphemes
  • Word root and ending
  • Jumbled sentences
  • Jumbled question sentences

Writing and spelling activities–2 minutes (Download PDF)

  • Sound fingers
  • Select words for spelling
  • Spelling practice
  • Spell check
  • Dictation group 1 group 2
  • Editing
  • Interesting sentences

Reception and above

Fun activities–2 minutes (Download PDF)

Use materials at an appropriate level from the curriculum activities above, the SPELD SA Phonics Page and/or commercial products

SPELD SA is generously supported by

thyne reid foundation Education Logo CMYK H Large australian executor trustees

SPELD SA would like to acknowledge the support of the Douglas Whiting Trust in the development of this website.

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We are a proud member of AUSPELD


AUSPELD is a member of the IDA Global Partners Program