Lars Larson: Allowing kids to use spell check for a writing test

I love the idea of technology but I hate the idea of giving American school kids a Spell Checker when they are taking a writing test.

I thought the idea was crazy when I first saw it in the paper. The idea that kids taking a writing test would be given the advantage of spell check. As an adult, it is handy to have, but I know how to spell and I don’t get that many words wrong. I figure a big part of writing is knowing how to spell words that you are writing.

I’ve had to look things up in dictionaries since I was a kid. It’s one of the first things that my dad and mom insisted that I do. Look up the words you don’t understand.

But now some educators are saying we should allow kids taking tests, where they are being tested on their writing skill, to have the computer do a spell check. After all it doesn’t matter how the word is spelled does it?

Yes, it does as a matter of fact. If you can’t spell, as far as I’m concerned you can’t write.

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