Event description

Co-Presented Fiona Hamilton & Pete Bowers

Learning to ask questions about word structure sets you and your students on a quest for understanding.


Access 2-day workshop including classroom-embedded sessions on both days Thursday, January 17th – Friday 18th 

This workshop is suitable for those brand new to Word Inquiry and those who are experienced with this instruction and want to deepen their understanding. This workshop will include an introduction and overview of Word Inquiry with activities to help participants deepen their understanding of English orthography and how it uses an interrelation of morphology, etymology and phonology to represent the meanings of words and link words through spelling-meaning structures. Understanding the role of phonology in spelling is a crucial aspect of this workshop.

These concepts are presented through the same kinds of classroom-based activities that are used in classrooms around the world. Participants will learn both how English spelling works, and how we can study how words are structured across the grades to build reading, spelling and vocabulary, and to deepen understanding across all disciplines. Pete will also address the research related to Structured Word Inquiry.

Classroom-embedded portion 

This workshop will include at least one lesson with a younger class and at least one class with older children who are using Word Inquiry to deepen their understanding of vocabulary and content area. This will include instruction by Pete and Fiona and local NIST teachers who have been working with Word Inquiry.

Extension Workshops 

Saturday, January 19th

This extension day is divided into two portions. People can take either just the morning, just the afternoon or both sessions. People can attend this day without having attended on the Thursday-Friday session. We recommend that those who attend the 2-day workshop also take this extension day to refine their understanding of the previous days.

Understanding Orthographic Phonology (08:30-12:00)

In this morning session Pete and Fiona will focus on building understanding of “orthographic phonology”, what it is and how it overlaps with, but is distinct from phonics. The focus on this session is understanding grapheme-phoneme correspondences and how they operate within the context of our English orthographic system. Because orthographic phonology is not just about grapheme-phoneme correspondences, but how those correspondences are constrained by morphological and etymological factors, this session will also address morphology and etymology.

Understanding Morphological and Etymological Relatives (13:00-16:30)

The focus of this afternoon session is to understand the interrelation of morphological and etymological relatives. We will study how they are linked, and how they differ. This session will involve activities based on examples from classroom lessons from across the grades. Activities will include collecting and analyzing morphological relatives with word sums and constructing morphological matrices. It will also include explicit instruction about reading and working with Etymonline in the process of identifying words related in meaning and spelling — and how to draw on etymological information to inform morphological analysis in word sums and matrices.


Tailored to your needs - choose from:

Option 1: Comprehensive 3-day workshop USD 460
Includes the Access workshop and both Extension Workshops

Option 2: Access 2-day workshop (which includes classroom embedded learning) USD 345

Option 3: Extension workshop: Understanding Orthographic Phonology USD 115
Saturday 08:30 - 12:00

Option 4: Extension workshop: Understanding Morphological and Etymological Relatives USD 115
Saturday 13:00 - 16:30

Register for the Workshop Click here