Wednesday, April 22, 2015

RTI: ink, ank, unk, onk Phonics Activities

I've been working on the units -ink and -ank with my first graders lately. Earlier in the year, I was working on it with one of my 2nd grade groups.  I'm telling you, that ink and ank can be a doozy. I started certain parts of this pack last year, then added some in the fall when I was using it with my 2nd graders, then finished it last week when I was working with my 1st grade group. I have about 3 other phonics intervention packs half done, similar to this one. I love to have a variety of activities to choose from. Some activities are quick and simple, others are more involved and hands-on. All are  great practice for our little readers! I use some of the these activities to introduce the -ink, -ank, -unk, and -onk word families. Others are used as a good ol' review. You will not use all of these activities at once, but it's nice to have some extra activities to choose from in your back pocket. :)




I like to encourage my kids to "chunk" through words. I teach them to see -ink and -ank as a word family since it does not follow the "rules" really. 



Here, we used white board pens to "highlight" the word family. They read the word family then add in the initial sound(s) and blend the words. 
Here, they choose the correct initial sound(s) for each word ending. 




Each student chooses word endings for each box. Then they read it to the group.









I included word cards with colored backgrounds and word cards with no color. There are also picture cards. 


I use this activity the most. This is one of the first activities I use. We build words with the -ink and -ank and -unk word families using the regular word tiles.

Then I add in these green cards to show that these as a unit. I build words and they read them and then they build words that I call out. I include real and nonsense words.  



Sometimes you just need a good game.  


This one can be done independently:


If you want to get them moving, have a word hunt:


To practice writing these words in context, I gave them these picture prompts.  






Sunday, April 19, 2015

Earth Day Printable Reading Activity Freebie

Happy Sunday everyone! Just a quick post today- an actual "snippet" for once. :) Earth Day is around the corner so I wanted to make sure you picked up this little freebie. It's not new, but it is updated with some adorable new clip art! If you are a new follower or if you just missed this freebie a couple years ago, you can download this today! It's a quick and easy activity, but it still gives your students great reading practice while reinforcing Earth Day themes.  



If you enjoy these activities, you can find a bundle of these for the whole year in this pack:


Thursday, April 16, 2015

A Great App for Multi-Sensory Reading and Spelling Instruction

Have you tried Whizzimo? It is my favorite app to use with my reading groups! I was introduced to this app last fall by this amazing dyslexia specialist.


This app is perfect for Orton Gillingham teachers and tutors, but you don't have to be using that program to use this app. Basically, this app allows you to give your students that tactile experience of using letter tiles on the iPad!  I love using actual tiles for my word building on a regular basis in my classroom. But sometimes it is a pain to get those tiles out. That's where my favorite app comes in handy. It's simple and no hassle! I go back and forth between using this app and the actual physical tiles that I made. When I use this app, I build words and have my students read them. I use it to introduce new phonics skills. Then I pass it over to my students. They can build and manipulate words.

So today I'm going to tell you a few things that I love about this app. (Just so you know, I am in no way affiliated with this app. I just really love it!)












Click on the picture to watch a super short video of one my students using it:


You can read more about this app here and watch a video to get started here. Download the app here.


Sunday, April 12, 2015

April Take a Closer Look Blog Hop

It's time for another Take a Closer Look blog hop! Get a small sample of nine different products from my blogger friends. 


Today I'm giving you a closer look at  my April Literacy centers for kindergarten.  I chose a center from the Sentence Building column. Students build short spring-themed sentences using a sentence mat. This is a precursor to the first grade version where students build a super sentence. 



Click HERE to get your freebie.

Here is a quick preview of everything else from the menu:




Now it's time to visit my friend, Jessica, at First Grade Nest.



Thursday, April 9, 2015

Stamp a Story

I've blogged before about how much my students LOVE making sticker stories (click here for that old post.) Another favorite writing activity when I taught first grade was to "stamp a story." I usually used this as a writing center or early finisher activity. This takes a little more bravery on your part. Let's be honest, ink is a pain. If you leave it open, it dries out. If kids get over excited, their is ink all over their hands, clothes and paper. Yikes. But let's get serious here. If it gets them writing, then I'm all for it! 

The Easter Bunny brought stamps into our house. Thank you Amazon! These little stamps solve a lot of the problems with the big mess because there isn't a separate ink pad that can attract little fingers and smear all over. After Shawn made a few random pictures with stamps (by random I mean as many stamps on a page as he can fit,) I suggested we make a story with the stamps. First, I set the stamps up so we could see the picture. We talked about which stamps could be characters and which stamps could be part of the scenery. Then we brainstormed different ideas for stories with these characters. I asked simple questions like, Where are your characters? What are they doing? 

Before he started stamping, we also talked about what the scene would look like. I told him this is going to be like a picture, similar to if he were to draw it. We started with the grass, then added in flowers and animals. Last, he added in the butterflies and dragonflies. 

Finally, he was ready to do his writing: 

Keep in mind he is a kindergartener. A first grade student may choose to add more detail to their story. (I would add a back page of lines for a first grader.) After writing this, he said he wanted his next one to be all about forest animals in spring. Informational writing... BOOM!



Here are my tips for the classroom when using this as a center:






Where do you find stamps? Amazon baby! Click on the picture to download the links to these stamps. 
The top row are all little stamps. The benefits are that they are not as messy and you don't have to purchase a separate ink pad. The negative is that they run out of ink faster and you are stuck with the color they give you BUT you can always use an ink pad with these little stamps after they run out. The bottom row are bigger and you can choose the color based on the ink pad you choose. They are slightly more expensive, but not too bad. They are easy to use when creating a scene though. :) 


To get started, download this template by clicking here or on the picture below.






Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Easter Activities


 For No Worksheet Wednesday, I got out the eggs. Kids get so excited when they see these plastic eggs.


I only chose a couple sight words that we have been working on. I chose words they know and a two  new words. Students read the word on the outside, then opened the egg to build the word. I wanted them to repeat so they had extra practice with each word, so I had them put the letters back in, shake it up, and then reread and rebuild the word.   Let me tell you about my mistake now. I thought it would be fun to get them moving and "hide" the eggs around the room. (Keep in mind I only have 5 kids at a time in my room.) I modeled how to find an egg, read the egg, build the word, and then move on to another. Uh, nope. They were too excited to just go around and collect them. They were not about to stop and read it or build the words. They just wanted to collect. Soooo, we regrouped and moved to our reading table for a more structured approach. Maybe next year? ;) 


We practiced sounding out words with these eggs from my Kindergarten April Literacy menu. We made it into a game. I set out the onset and rime. Each student took turns flipping over two cards to match. They read the words in their whisper phones (so everyone was getting practice). Then we flipped it back over and wrote the word on white boards. 


My first grade students used these eggs to review silent e. 


My second grade students practiced reading two-syllabe words. 


Also with my kindergarten students, I brought out the spring board for our sentence building. I love this board because it includes positional sight words like by, under, on, and in. I used the Easter-related picture words this time.