Saturday's Sites

Passing along more great online literacy resources today…

  • I found an awesome online resource related to a question I posted earlier this week on Facebook: What things do you do with your child to keep her from forgetting what she learned the previous year in school?  This PDF ebook gives MANY  ideas of things to do during the summer months.
  • Annie @ The Moffatt Girls has posted Unit 3 from her Ready2Read series.  Free printables and lesson plans…gotta love that!
  • Michelle @ Beginning Reading Help has a great post with free online stories.  I’ve already checked quite a few of them out and am impressed.  Michelle is right in saying that kids love computer time, so here’s a sneaky way to get some more literature in there!

O What Fun!

Here are some more things we did with short o:

1. We re-matched the words and pictures.  The 2nd time he re-matched pictures and words, I helped.  But after that, I expected him to do it with minimal help from me.

3. We played Concentration or Memory Match

The words are on the left side and the pictures on the right side.  The pictures also have the word written in small print to make this game self-checking.

A match!

Just a side note: I used this green short o memory match set when I taught public school.  I also have another set exactly like this one that is printed on orange construction paper.  That way, I could place both sets in the same Ziploc bag at a center.  If I had 6 students playing short o memory match at the same time, 3 students could easily pull and play with the green set, while the other 3 students could play with the orange set.  I used this color system a lot with small group games to make it easy to identify and divide up sets.

4. We built words with Legos.

I organized the words in the sort (adding hog) so that he only had to change one letter at a time to make each new word.  We first built dog together.  I asked, “Can you change one letter in dog to make dot?”  This is a great phonemic awareness skill (a part of phonological awareness) because he had to listen for the individual sounds in each word to figure out how to spell the new word.

5. We went on a short o Word Hunt.

He read I Can Hop from readinga-z.com (I don’t currently have a membership, but the books are downloaded on my computer) and found and colored all the OT and OP words.

Here are the words I pulled out before reading the text.

I remembered as a child sometimes coloring in all the o‘s on the church bulletin during the sermon, so instead of highlighting the words, I thought he’d like to color in the o‘s (OT words in yellow and OP words in pink).  This was also a great way to continue working on his fine motor skills; which he has yet to master.

Saturday's Sites

I am taking a break from my mini-series on fiction text structure to tell you about a few sites:

1. Progressive Phonics– a free online phonics program with readers.  I honestly haven’t scoped it out thoroughly, yet, but it looks rather cool!  I am a member of We Teach, started by Amy of Teach Mama, and I found this link on another member’s post.

2. Reading Rockets– a great website that answers a lot of questions concerning reading.  The sections that may be most helpful are for parents or for teachers.  There’s a lot of meat in there, so dig in!!

3. Words Their Way site– if you go on this site, you can select which stage of spelling your child is in and find some helpful hints and resources for that stage.  Once you’ve clicked on the stage, check out the left-hand sidebar.  This reading mama particularly likes the Resources and Web Links sections.

4. Slideshare is an awesome website with great PP slide shows developed by teachers, researchers, and writers.   Here’s one slide show related to the fiction mini-series I’ve been working on lately that I just looked through last night.

Saturday’s Sites

I am taking a break from my mini-series on fiction text structure to tell you about a few sites:

1. Progressive Phonics– a free online phonics program with readers.  I honestly haven’t scoped it out thoroughly, yet, but it looks rather cool!  I am a member of We Teach, started by Amy of Teach Mama, and I found this link on another member’s post.

2. Reading Rockets– a great website that answers a lot of questions concerning reading.  The sections that may be most helpful are for parents or for teachers.  There’s a lot of meat in there, so dig in!!

3. Words Their Way site– if you go on this site, you can select which stage of spelling your child is in and find some helpful hints and resources for that stage.  Once you’ve clicked on the stage, check out the left-hand sidebar.  This reading mama particularly likes the Resources and Web Links sections.

4. Slideshare is an awesome website with great PP slide shows developed by teachers, researchers, and writers.   Here’s one slide show related to the fiction mini-series I’ve been working on lately that I just looked through last night.

Saturday's Sites

1. Into the Book is a site I use when I need a little extra help with ideas on teaching comprehension strategies.

On the left sidebar, you’ll see a list of comprehension strategies.  If you click on any of them, there are subcategories you can also click on.  My favorite resources within each comprehension strategy are the lesson plans, books to go with each strategy, and the links.  You can also click on the video snippets.  The teacher clips are good, but keep in mind, they are focused on instruction via the classroom.   I will warn you that the student videos are staged and can be a little on the cheesy side.

2.  Mrs. Kilburn’s Kiddos is a blog I have on my blogroll, but wanted to spotlight one of the awesome resources she has: Free printable books for young readersScroll down a little bit and you’ll find emergent readers beginning with each letter of the alphabet…an awesome resource that she has compiled.  I’d just like to know where she found all the time to do this?!?

3.  I’ve added a new blog to my blogroll.  It’s called Quirky Momma and it’s got some great activities for reading; including a section on homemade learn to read resources.  I’m so glad I found you, “quirky momma”! 🙂

Saturday’s Sites

1. Into the Book is a site I use when I need a little extra help with ideas on teaching comprehension strategies.

On the left sidebar, you’ll see a list of comprehension strategies.  If you click on any of them, there are subcategories you can also click on.  My favorite resources within each comprehension strategy are the lesson plans, books to go with each strategy, and the links.  You can also click on the video snippets.  The teacher clips are good, but keep in mind, they are focused on instruction via the classroom.   I will warn you that the student videos are staged and can be a little on the cheesy side.

2.  Mrs. Kilburn’s Kiddos is a blog I have on my blogroll, but wanted to spotlight one of the awesome resources she has: Free printable books for young readersScroll down a little bit and you’ll find emergent readers beginning with each letter of the alphabet…an awesome resource that she has compiled.  I’d just like to know where she found all the time to do this?!?

3.  I’ve added a new blog to my blogroll.  It’s called Quirky Momma and it’s got some great activities for reading; including a section on homemade learn to read resources.  I’m so glad I found you, “quirky momma”! 🙂

April Showers

It has rained a tremendous amount over the last 3 weeks where we live!  And then there’s also the old saying: “April showers bring May flowers.”  So we did a few rain activities together.  I meant to post this last week, but forgot…

Day 1:

Read aloud Rain by Robert Kalan (illustrated by Donald Crews).  I would classify this book on a mid-Kindergarten reading level.  ALuv then read it to us (with a little help from me).

Just a note: The book now resides on our white Ikea shelf in the playroom, which helps to remind me to ask him to re-read it a few more times.  Once he has it down independently, I’ll put the book in his ALuv Can Read bin (below).

Read & sang the nursery rhyme Rain on the Green Grass, which I had posted on my kitchen wall.  I picked this rhyme because our sight words for these two weeks are and &  not.  The poem also reviews other Word Wall words (on, the, & me).

We patted our knees to make the rain sound as we sang it in a little song together.

If you’ll notice, I have green grass underlined.  We looked out our windows and took turns changing those lyrics as we sang the song again.  These were some of our other lyrics…Rain on the black road, blue swing, red flowers, green trees, and blue van (NJoy’s favorite…we sang that one each time it was his turn!!).

Writing/Coloring Time: NJoy colored some pictures with the rain theme from DLTK.  His favorite thing about the rain are the “rainbrellas”–why do we call them umbrellas?!?  I like NJoy’s word choice much better! 🙂

While NJoy colored, I started ALuv on writing and illustrating his own Rain book.  I drew some lined paper (see below) for him to use for the book.  On the first 2 pages, I had already written Rain on the and he had to finish the sentence using a color word and an object on which it could rain.  (For example: Rain on the red locomotive).  Once his sentence was complete, he had to draw and color the pictures.  He did these two pages on Day 1 and then we stopped for the day.

For the paper we used on day 1, click here: Rain on the…

Day 2:

Read aloud The Napping House by Audrey WoodWhile reading Rain on Day 1, I was reminded of this book.  It’s one of my mom’s favorite books and has become one of mine, too.  I also have the big book, but couldn’t find it in the attic; which needs a serious organizational overhaul–any volunteers?!? 🙂

Re-read Rain (we shared the reading)

Sang Rain on the Green Grass like Day 1, except we added some spice by singing it fast and slow, while patting our legs fast and slow.

Writing & Coloring: NJoy colored again (the boy loves to color!) while ALuv finished his Rain book.

On the next 3 pages, ALuv had to write the entire sentence and the draw pictures to go with them.  Here’s the paper he used for that: blank writing paper.

On the last page, he spelled the word RAINBOW with rainbow stickers from Target’s $1 bin.

We took 11×14 construction paper and covered & stapled the book together once he was finished.  It now resides in his ALuv Can Read Bin.

Short a Review

After studying 5 different short a word families (-at, -an, -ad, -ap, and –ag) with ALuv, we took a break from doing more short a word families and reviewed the short a word pattern (CVC).  I felt that he was ready to do this because he was able to sound out and read short a words we had not studied, yet (such as jam).

Here are some of the things we did to review short a words:

Found in context: While reading texts together during the day or before bed, I would sometimes point to short a words and let him read them.

Spinner Wheel activity (click here & here for the full lesson and templates)

Games: We played a short a file folder game (“Alligator Alley”); matching short a words with short a pictures

This game comes from a Carson Dellosa file folder game book I’ve had for about 12 years.  I’m not sure if they still make it, but I know they have new file folder game books.  I looked online for a free short a file folder game, but could not find one. 😦  There is this website that has many other free folder games you can download.

Internet: www.starfall.com– We read Zac the Rat together, then played the AN game and the AT game.  (I actually have all of starfall’s phonics readers laminated and made into books from when I taught, so I pulled out Zac the Rat and let Avery read it again another day.  Then it went into his ALuv Can Read box.)  Starfall has another link on their site that I noticed as well, but you have to pay a membership fee to play most of the games.  Still, ALuv enjoyed playing Word Machines for short a, which was free.

Bottle Cap Spelling: Click here for how I found out about using the bottle caps and where I got my pictures.  I have a Word template for the bottle caps, which is nothing fancy; but feel free to adapt it for your use: bottle cap circles. I only picked picture cards for this activity that had 3 phonemes (or sounds) and 3 letters  in the word.  For example, bat has 3 phonemes (/b/ /a/ /t/); whereas flag has 4 phonemes (/f/ /l/ /a/ /g/).

Tag Reader: To recap our study, I pulled out a Tag short a book (Casey Cat Has a Hat) that I’d been saving just for this occassion.  I have to tell you, he wasn’t initially as excited to see this one, as he was thinking I’d have another I Spy or Cars one for him, but he did eventually open it up!  We went on a short a word hunt together and then he explored the book on his own.

Free AP Word Family Books

I meant to post these yesterday…sorry!

Here are a couple of AP Word Family booklets from Hubbard’s Cupboard:

Hap Can See (easy level)

I Like to Dance! (includes more blends with the AP words)

Tuesday’s Teaching Tip

Do you have a not so silent reader?

Many kids in Stage 2 of literacy still need to say the words out loud, even if you ask them to read silently.  This is very normal.  I remember having a room full of K-1 readers all “silently reading” out loud; which made for a noisy room!  To remedy this, I my husband made whisper phones so the kids could hear themselves reading without the need to talk so loudly.  This idea is not original to me, but I’m not sure where I first heard of it.

Now at this reading mama’s house, ALuv is the only one who really uses one of these for reading purposes.  But it comes in rather handy when NJoy and MBug are sleeping and I need ALuv to turn down the volume a bit. 🙂

Whisper phones are made of PVC piping with two elbow pieces and one straight piece in the middle.  The middle piece of mine is 3 1/2 inches long.

If you don’t want to make a whisper phone, we’ve discovered that the stethoscope from our Fisher Price doctor’s kit works much the same way.

Happy “silent” reading!

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