Phonics Kit

The Phonics Toolkit is now available at Teachers Pay Teachers. Transform students into super readers with memorable introductions to patterns with fun rhymes, 16 games,  24 worksheets, 11 word sorts and more. Learn more about the Phonics Toolkit and get your copy today! Designed to be portable, inexpensive to create, and easy to use, it provides many resources for learning phonics skills.

Once your kit is set up, add some of the resources from others that are compiled here. Many of these are provided free for personal or classroom use by the websites in the links. A magnet board and magnetic letters are a great addition for practicing words.

You may also want to check out 10 Steps to Reading, which includes links to my favorite free online resources for learning phonics. There is a downloadable pdf version.

Each post below includes videos, printable games, and online games to learn the concept as well. Many online games require Flash and may not work well on some tablets and smartphones. It can be helpful to download the Mozilla Firefox browser. They are collected in one place here at Symbaloo.

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Materials:

Option 1: Use a binder notebook with dividers, zip-lock bags for the sorts, and a separate binder for the games. Keep it all in a tote bag.

Option 2: Use a separate plastic pronged folder with pockets for each concept or pattern. Keep the folders in a plastic Sterlite file bin.

For the word sorts:

  • Card stock for printing some of the activities.
  • Plastic zip-lock bags from the hobby area, the 2″x 3″ size is great for holding the sort cards. They can be kept in larger zip-lock bags, or punched with a hole punch and added onto the prongs of the folders.
  • You can use containers like Athenos feta cheese and add frog eyes from tes. Name tag holders can work as pockets to change the pattern for each sort.

For the kit:

  • Binders -OR-
  • Plastic pronged folders with pockets. These are about anywhere for around .50 each.
  • Sterlite plastic file bin & hanging folders
  • Transparent plastic bingo chips in assorted colors are great as markers for games and other uses. They can be found at Oriental Trading Company, or I found mine at Mardel.

The materials in the kit and compiled here are designed to practice spotting different patterns. There are lots of sorts to do, games to play, and things to read. Create a section or folder for each of the topics below.

PHONICS BASICS

26 letters amaze and astound! They make 44 sounds when they move around! Here are some helpful charts to keep in front of your kit:

  1. Phonics Basics
  2. Short Vowels
  3. Silent e
  4. Bossy R
  5. Digraphs
  6. Diphthongs – Vowel Teams with (mostly) new sounds
  7. Vowel Teams – More Ways That Vowels Can Be Long
  8. Letters With More Than One Sound
  9. English is Weird: Schwa & Sight Words
  10. Syllables : Open & Closed | Consonant -le

PHONICS RESOURCES FROM THE DAILY PLANIT

Free:

  • Bookmark Set Freebie – These bookmarks include Write the Pattern activities for many Phonics Patterns.
  • Pattern Chart Set Freebie – These can be used as sort mats, posters, or printed on business cards for other sorts. Credits: Some artwork copyrighted by Mark A Hicks, illustrator, www.MARKiX.net. Used with permission. Sources for other graphics at Pinterest.

PatternCharts

The Super Tutor Tools Store at Teachers Pay Teachers has many resources I’ve created for tutoring reading. Most have a small charge, but there are freebies there too.

Check out the Daily Planit Phonics Toolkit for even more resources, including the free ebook on Phonics FUNdamentals.

Glossary of Literacy Terms

  • Digraph-a pair of letters representing a single speech sound (consonant digraphs, and vowel digraphs or vowel teams)
  • diphthong-two vowels combine to make one sound with mouth positions that change.
  • grapheme–the written representation of a phoneme
  • phoneme-the individual sounds that make up a word
  • phonics–the relationship between letters and sounds
  • schwa–a lightly pronounced “uh” vowel sound that can be represented by any vowel
  • syllable–a unit of speech generally containing only one vowel sound

There are more definitions of Literacy Terms at atozphonics.com and quizlet.com

A Phonics Kit provides tools for learning reading skills.

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Posted in phonics

A Mindful Moment

In the moment that we notice, lies the potential for change.

Mindfulness is about noticing, paying attention, and being aware.

Mindfulness can mean observing the world around us. When we are mindful, we notice a beautiful sunset, inhale the smell of a flower, listen to moving music, feel a cool breeze, and savor the taste of food. We use all of our senses to notice what is going on. We look into the eyes of the people we love, and listen closely to what they are saying.

Mindfulness can also be about an inner focus: noticing our own thoughts and emotions, and whether we are paying attention to the negative or the positive, the important or the unimportant. When we are tuned into what is going on within us, we might notice that our energy levels are low and see that it is time to re-charge. We might become aware that we are spending too much time on work or social media, and neglecting the people right in front of us.

In our busy world with countless distractions, too often we become so absorbed by the virtual world that we forget to look up and notice. We are happier when we connect with others, so plan a face-to-face meeting with a friend, or get together with family, and focus on them. Pleasure is added when we anticipate a fun activity, or recall a fun time in the past.

There are meditations designed to increase mindfulness, like this walk along the beach video (24:41) from Jason Stephenson. But there is a difference between the two terms even though sometimes they are used synonymously. While very helpful for meditation and deep breathing (and all the building blocks of positive shift), mindfulness is really about being aware of the present moment. Jon Kabat-Zinn wrote that mindfulness means “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.”

A Mindfulness Exercise

Listen to a CD of the sounds of ocean waves, while imagining all the sensations of standing on an ocean beach, surrounded by blue sky, green palm trees, and the sweet scent of colorful flowers. Imagine feeling the warmth of the sun, a gentle breeze, and the sand beneath your feet. As you touch on all the senses, feel your connection with the world. Inhale deeply and stretch up, while imagining you are filling up with hope, peace, serenity, and calm. As you slowly exhale, reach toward your toes while you let go of all tensions and worries.

Tools to become more mindful:

Learn more at the Positive Shift Happens Toolkit

Posted in Ideas That Work

The Building Blocks of Positive Shift: BE MEASURING

BEMEASURINGblockshorizontal

The building blocks of positive shift are not complicated. You likley have heard of some of them before. They are simple, and most of them are not hard to do. Why, then, do we often fail to practice them? They require an investment of time, and we may be so busy and distracted that we forget the convincing research on the Benefits of Happiness Habits in Infographics. I’m positive you will gain many benefits if you practice the activities have been shown to increase well-being by studies in the field of Positive Psychology. Learn more with resources at The Positive Shift Happens Toolkit

BEMEASURING Building Blocks pdf

Breathe: breathe deeply

Exercise: regular physical exercise

Meditate: practice focused attention, returning wandering thoughts back to the focus point

Emotionally Aware: understand your own emotions and empathize with others

Aspire: take action toward meaningful goals

Share & Spirituality: volunteer or contribute to a cause you believe in, perform random acts of kindness, connect with a higher power or philosophical and religious beliefs

Uplift: yourself with positive music and thoughts, and others with kind words

Relate: spend time interacting with people

In Flow: use the talents that cause you to lose track of time

Notice: look up, be aware and mindful, pay attention, smell the roses. Plan and anticipate activities, remember good times.

Gratitude: begin the day with appreciation, and end it by thinking of a few things you are grateful for. Thank those you are grateful for.

While the first letters of these activities happen to spell BE MEASURING, it is not usually important to measure them! What is important, is to make them a regular part of your life.

Posted in Ideas That Work, personal development

Reading Lesson Plan

This plan to follow for tutoring students learning to read was Inspired by Phonics Intervention from Sarah’s First Grade Snippets. The amount of time spent on different activities varies depending on the needs of the student. The assessments at the end of this post help know where to start. These activities can begin once letter names and sounds have been learned. Download a printable pdf of ideas for tutoring sessions here.

WARM UP

Review vowel sounds: Beginners-short or long vowel chart, More Advanced-the Vowel Patterns grocery store chart

Review phonograms with Quizlet flashcards

Phonemic Awareness (using voice only)

  • Segmenting: tutor says word, student takes apart syllables or separate sounds in a word
  • Blending: tutor says separate syllables or sounds in a word, student puts them together to say the word.
  • Symbaloo of Literactive Games (use Puffin browser on mobile device)

REVIEW

Review skills from last lesson

LESSON

Introduce a new skill, following sequence as the student is ready.

Word families for the pattern: little bunny sliders. Printable pdf of word families with phonics patterns.

DECODE (read)

Word Sorts

Look for patterns

Automaticity: Read sentences with the target skill at stickyball.net

ENCODE (put letter sounds into writing)

Build words (with online magnetic letters from goteachthis.com)

  • Tutor says a word, “how many sounds do you hear? What is the first sound? Etc.” Student uses letter tiles to build it, then writes it.

Manipulate words

Pattern matching

  • Write words with the patterns in columns under the correct pattern – Bookmark freebie

FLUENCY

Reading passage from Progressive Phonics

Review sight words with Quizlet flashcards and free bookmarks from Super Tutor Tools 

Encode sight words with Sight Words Audible from Mr. Nussbaum

ASSESSMENTS

Literacy Resources (heggerty.org) has assessments for:

  • letter names and sounds skills
  • phonemic awareness skills

National Right to Read Foundation (nrrf.org) Reading Competency Test Reading Competency TestPart 1 – Phonics Patterns, Part 2 – Reading Level

To learn about phonics basics and for quick access to resources and games at the Daily Planit, download a free ebook: “Phonics FUNdamentals plus online games to practice reading skills.” Explore the Phonics Toolkit here at the Daily Planit and my resources available at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Posted in phonics

Bossy R Variations

Vowels can vary in the sounds they make. Here are some of the ways that Bossy R words can vary. First let’s look at what happens when words have both a Silent e and a Bossy R.

Silent e vs Bossy R

SilentevsBossyR

If you find a wire in your spare tire you will see that Silent e wins with -are & -ire. When we explore nature, it is Bossy R that wins with -ore & -ure.  A Silent e vs Bossy R words worksheet is available at my Teachers Pay Teachers Super Tutor Tools store.

The Bossy R Schwa

SchwaBossyR

Some words say “er” with different Bossy R spellings. “The pearl is worth a dollar.” In this phrase, all of these spellings make the “er” schwa sound.

The -ear phonogram is quite tricky. You will learn (er) not to fear (long e/r) the bear (“air”) with a big heart (ar). WATCH: ear video from stickyball.net.

EAR3

The -air sound (or phoneme) can be made with several spellings. Besides the ear in bear, AR can say arrow and ER can say error. Be warned that AR can also say OR when it is warm. IR can say a long e in words like spirit & mirror.

AIR

Multiple Meaning Words

MultipleMeaningWords2

When working with Bossy R variations, you may notice that many of these words can be homophones. They sound exactly the same, but are spelled differently and have different meanings. “I have a pair of pears.”

You may also see homonyms or homographs, words that are spelled and sound the same but have different meanings. “I will park the car at the park.” In the phrase “There is a tear in my eye as I tear up the paper” the word tear is a hetronym. Hetronyms are a type of homograph that have the same spelling, but a different sound and meaning.

READ “A Bat Cannot Bat, a Stair cannot Stare” by Brian P Cleary, “Dear Deer” by Gene Barretta, “Eight Ate” and “The Dove Dove” by Marvin Terban.

PLAY Categorical Dominoes from Brian P Cleary to practice homophones.

Practice Schwa Bossy R with worksheets that can also be used as word sorts available at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers. A free copy of the Multiple Meaning Chart can be found there as well. PLAY a homophone Search-a-word puzzle.

Learn more at Bossy R is Very Controlling from ogforall.com

Posted in phonics

More Ways That Vowels Can Be Long

Vowels can be long with the Silent e pattern, Vowel Teams, Open Syllables, and Tricky Y. Two more important long vowel patterns to learn are: i and o can be long when followed by two consonants, and open syllables in two syllable words with one middle consonant. These can be challenging, because in both cases, words may have either the long or short sound.

i and o can be long when followed by two consonants

If you have lŏst a gĭft you know that this is not always so. A strategy for reading is to try it with a long vowel sound to see if it is a recognizable word. If it is not, try it with the short vowel sound.

Strategy: To fīnd lŏng, pĭck bōth

These words can be practiced with a Long or Short i or o Soccer Game. Teams are chosen for either the long vowel sound or the short vowel sound and take turns drawing words to match the pattern.

The words can be printed on “soccer balls” and cut out with a 1 inch circle punch to add to the fun.

The Long or Short i or o Soccer Game is available at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Open and Closed Syllables in Two Syllable Words with one middle consonant

TigerCamelWords

The first syllable in two syllable words with one middle consonant can be either long or short, so it is important to understand and practice these words too. Since more are long (60%) than short (40%), try the long vowel sound first to see if it is a recognizable word. If it is not, try it with the short vowel sound.

Strategy: Bē/gin with long, vĭ/sit short

The Tiger & Camel Words Soccer Game is available at Teachers Pay Teachers.

 

Posted in phonics

Letters With More Than One Sound: the Vowels

We have met OO/OO, one of the diphthongs. Which might be a foot that is short, or a boot that is too long. More vowels that can vary are OW, EA, IE. The letter Y can be Tricky indeed with the sounds it can make, more than three! (it can say a short i like in gym.)

2Sounds

Y at the end of a one syllable word, often says a long “I” as in fly. Practice Tricky Y with a story and word sort at my Teachers Pay Teachers Store.

PLAY ONLINE Y ending games at eslphonicsworld.com,  at Galactic Phonics Y as long i and Y as long e and more vowel variations.

FlyI

R controlled vowels may be trickiest of all…but I forgot to mention that A can say short O like in watch or in ball. The Sounds of A Worksheet/Word Sort is available at TeachersPayTeachers.

AlikeO

AR can sound like ER, as in pillar or dollar. So can OR, when you start your motor. When there is an E before AR all bets are off. It might be ER when you learn, or maybe a long e that you hear. It can even be a polar bear on a chair. Learn more about the Bossy R Schwa sound and other variations.

Last, but not least of all, is the amazing schwa. Any vowel can make this lazy “uh” sound, so watch out for schwas all around!

SchwaCard

These guidelines may help you to figure out the many sounds you will discover all about.

Teach reading skills using hands-on, fun activities: memorable introductions to patterns with fun rhymes, 16 games,  24 worksheets, 11 word sorts and more. Learn more about the Phonics Toolkit available at Teachers Pay Teachers and get your copy today!

Posted in phonics

Blends and Blending

Two (or more) consonants may blend together with each sound heard in the blend.

Blends are often introduced after learning about short vowels, so it’s a good idea to begin practicing with blends that have short vowels. Blends with other vowel patterns can be included after they have been learned. Blending the sounds of letters from left to right is an important skill for beginning readers. As other vowel patterns are introduced, scan for phonics patterns in words to decode them.

WATCH Blends (3:20) 2 Letters that work together from Jack Hartmann (3:32) Kids vs Phonics Blends (6:17)

Blends picture sorts from flyingintolearning.com. (More Blends picture sorts from fairypoppins for playdoughtoplato.com and color picture cards from testyyettrying)

Sort onto a B&W blends chart from thisreadingmama (or color blends chart from maketaketeach), S blends ice cream activity at kizclub.com

Blends flip books with pictures and words from phonics-teaching.com

READ Blend sentences at stickyball.net

PLAY Printable Letter Blends puzzle from Learning 4 Kids (11 pages, some color), Go Fish blends game from Adrian Bruce

Great Green Grapes Blend Board Game at TeachersPayTeachers

PLAY Online games: Fuzz Bugs Farm from abcya (pc only), blending bearending blends from kizphonics. Warehouse gameBowling gameSorting Office, and Final Blends Honey Maze from literactive. L Blends & s Blends at yourchildlearns. Blends at galacticphonics, Blends at softschools.com. Blends at education.com with sign-in, Consonant Blends at SadlierConnect (pc only). Advanced Blends: Rocketship Reader at roomrecess.com

More Resources at the Blends and Blending board at Pinterest.

Posted in phonics
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