October 04, 2015

All About the Letter T

All About the Letter Tt
 One of my favorite subjects to teach in K is phonics.
I LOVE teaching students the sounds letters make and 
how to put those sounds together to make words.
{I can't lie... I love every subject in K. 
But I really REALLY love phonics too!}

My school began teaching the Saxon letter order years ago. 
That means I would teach letters in this order... 
LOGHTPANMISF... you get the idea.

Then a few years back we were directed to change to the 
Recipe for Reading letter order.
This order is COAD... and so on.

Now, we are BACK to Saxon and onto the letter T.
I don't think the letter order makes or breaks much in the work of K,
but it does dictate all our reading curriculum since
building words using sounds to read in the foundation of phonics.

Like always, I start the week with the Alphatales book "When Tilly Turtle Came to Tea."
I read my copy and I make the printable versions for my students.
Alphatale readers for your class

On Monday we use sensory phonics
then we move onto these phonics activity for Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
phonics activities for the letter T

On Friday, we do a whole class chart using this sheet and cards.
We make a class chart of words that begin with Tt like Turtle.
Tt Chart and sound cards

Since some students are better than others, 
I make sure I have picture cards on hand to support learning
 until student can come up with words on their own.
sound cards for the letter Tt
In daily 5, we use these handwriting printables...
Letter Tt Printables for kinders

and this letter finding activity.
Find the letter Tt

One of our math stations is this treasure chest activity.
Treasure themed JEWEL number sense game

We have these treasure chests and we add the ten frame "jewel numbers"
 to each chest to make the number.
Since we complete this in centers, I give each student a different color set of jewels.
Number sense game with jewels

This way I can make sure each child has mastered this center before they leave.

Some of my students are working on making single digit numbers
but some are ready for double digits.
How do we do that?
We MAKE the number with tens and ones!
Challenge your students with two digit nuber building

We can follow up with this printable.
ten frame printable PERFECT for little learners

We also are working HARD on making words.
I love these CVC card mats.
Making CVC words in a FUN way!

For Daily 5 we use these mats to make words. 
Can you see the colored boxes?
CVC words creations you students will adore!
The colored boxes MATCH with the jewels they need to create words.
making CVC words with jewels

And easier way to play this game is to cut the words out while still connected like this.
Meet all your students needs with THIS TIP

or you can mix it up and cut the words apart
You can be like me and do one set of words together for those that need the help
and leave the rest apart for most of your students.
Making CVC words MORE FUN with this activity

And can you see how the color theme continues?

Another activity I use for my higher students is this tennis word game.
Tennis themed word matching activity

This game is perfect for allowing students to read words 
and match the word to the picture.
matching words to images for little learners

Here is what the game looks like when it is completed.

I also have a similar tennis themed matching game.
word and image matching game

All of these activities can be found HERE...

and you can click the PREVIEW to grab your freebie!

September 24, 2015

Bb and Dd Reversal Tip & Freebie

Don't you love it when you see a teaching tip that not only makes sense...
but you can name 3 students who can benefit from it TODAY?!
Me too!

I recently saw a Facebook video from a mommy 
showing this cool Bb and Dd reversal tip to others that helped her own son.
A fellow teacher saw it, tagged me, and 
asked me to make a poster to help her students remember this tip after she teaches it. 
I was thrilled to help.
My own daughter, S, is six and still reverses b,d,p,q and even 9's in there.
I knew this tip could benefit her as well.

My daughter, who JUST got her Princess Leia Halloween Costume TODAY
as I show her this tip.
She literally missed the spelling word "dish" today as "bish!"
{YES I know this is normal and developmentally appropriate.
I am not concerned, just aware.}

You can see that she gets it.
We will have to practice it everyday for a while to see if it works.
You can grab this printable here for absolutely FREE.
Bb and Dd reversal tip

And if you need more support teaching the Letters Bb {Print & Play Pack}
Letter Bb Printables and Playable Activities
and Letter Dd {Print & Play Pack},
Letter Dd Printables and Playable Activities
you can check out these letter packs.

September 16, 2015

The Outstanding Letter O

Outstanding Letter Oo

The letter O is usually the FIRST vowel we teach in kindergarten.
It is such an important sound to master and be able to use throughout the whole school year.
It makes it critical to make this letter meaningful and FUN.
{I am a huge fan of memorable learning.}

I know you are expecting me to start with letter and sound activities.
But I am actually going to start with some math activities.

A great activity to complete in small groups is this number and letter OREO sorting game
This is a fun way to do a quick assessment or
activity to see who knows the difference between letters and numbers.
number and letter cookie sorting
Of course your students will think they are sorting Oreo cookies into glasses of milk. 

I also love to use these oranges to fill ten frames.
This is an easy math center or activity.
There are 11 oranges, one for numbers 0-10.
orange themed ten frame activity to build number sense
After laminating,
my students take a dry erase marker to draw in dots to match the number on the card.
This seems simple, but remember the abilities of a newbie Kinder.

Most of my students have to count each square as they add to the ten frame.
The more often they practice using the ten frames, 
the faster and more accurately they will be at using ten frames.
Kindergarten activity to fill the ten frame
Plus the cards just make this activity THAT much more fun.

There is also an additional printable to support the activity or to reteach ten frame use.
This sheet is also an excellent way to track student progress over time, 
since all my letter packs have these types of sheets.
orange themed ten frame activity

We also have to work a LOT on letter formation.
Frequently. Often. Everyday.
One of my favorite writing activities is using this
letter formation practice in a FUN way with little prep
Frog Street Press Smart Start paper and an orange marker.
I write what I want them to copy onto the paper. 
Then I laminate the sheets.
With a dry erase marker, these writing mats are ready to go.
{I use the thin Expo Dry erase markers.)

Not only can I reuse these mats again and again.
BUT... using a marker allows your students to concentrate on the letter formation
and motions
rather than how hard they are bearing down on the paper.
GREAT letter writing practice idea
And we have all taught a student who writes SO DARK and almost hurts their hands.

But how do I actually TEACH the connection between letters and sounds?
I also love to use the Alphatales books.
The series comes with a book of printables if you buy the set of books.
I made a class set of copies 11 years ago and they are still good today.
listening to reading activity for the letter Oo
I read the large, teacher color copiy to my students on Mondays.
Then we use these readers on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday together.
This is a great way to practice listening to reading, turning pages, and tracking text
using the Alphatales Audio CD.

On Mondays, we read the Alphatales book.
Next, we do a full sensory phonics lesson.
Use these printbales for sensory phonics fun
We use these printables for our formation practice.
I love to use sand trays 
and gel bags to guide letter formation.
Here is Sensory Phonics Ideas.

I also use these phonics printables for my phonics activities for three days a week.
Letter Oo Phonics Activity
We use the same image on each sheet for a
solid, concrete visual to guide our mindsets.

These phonics activities are two sided.
You can see on Day 1, we practice writing the capital O.
Then we trace the letter O and identify the letter O in the box.
Letter Oo Phonics Activities
On the back we use the images to learn and write the initial sounds.
In this page, we have orange juice, a cloud, and an orange.
Then we have a sight word review.

We make a chart on Fridays.
It is always fun to see how their brains are working!

Another independent activity we love to complete is this Color the O and o activity.
I like to do this in the beginning of the week so I can quickly see who can identify their letters.
Although I have assessments that tell me this,
I think these activities are important for many reasons.
1. It is a recent assessment and therefore more accurate.
2. I make the identification pages with other letters on it that can be tricky for them.
I know what letters are confusing with the letter O so that is the letter exposed to them.
3. It is another activity that is FUN and allows for easy success
4. Coloring is a great way to build hand strength.
5. Easy data if needed.

Another fun activity for the letter O uses this Octopus notepad from Carson Dellosa.
Octopus Notepad... you can turn this into a great GAME
I took the pack of 50 sheets and broke it into 5 sets of 10 pages each.
Then, I used a phonics activity we could do in paper form and cut out the images.
Octopus Notepad... you can turn this into a great GAME
After taking a different color marker for each set;
 one red, purple, blue, green, and black,
I add dashes for the letters in that word.
After laminating and cutting out, I linked each set together.
Now we have more interactive and engaging phonics center to write words that have an O in them.
Notice that I wrote the letter m in mop on the pages.
I know that letter is harder to write, so I wrote it for them.
Since we are focusing on the o,
 the letter m is a bonus if they can use it, but not an area of stress of formation.

We also use these Letter O readers I made.
Letter Oo Reader
We print them back to back, then staple down the left side.
Once they are cut in half, you have two mini readers perfect for kinders hands.
If you teach at a title school with limited funds for books, printables readers are the way to go!
I also love using these for extra reading materials for Daily 5. 
You can make sure they have reading materials at home.

I also love these O themed ABC Handwriting practice.
Not only do I teach my students to write the letter O, 
but we practice ALL our LETTERS every week.
I take these printables and put them inside page protectors.
We write with THIN dry erase markers.
Letter O Themed Letter Formation Practice
These mats are all different and have different O word images on them.
If a student needs more help, they can just grab a different sheet.
And they think they are doing a totally NEW activity.

I also recently added some new activities to this pack.
I added a new number writing mat set.
There are 4 differentiated mats to choose from, all with an orange background.
 Students take a laminated mat and write their numbers on it.
I did this mat in red so you can see it.
orange writing and mat activity for students

THEN, they take the solid mat that is also provided and cut it apart.
Then take the pieces and match them to the written numbers to form a puzzle.
O themed mat for writing and matchign letters

 We also added a FREEBIE counting sheet for oranges in a basket.
Count them up Activity

I also added an awesome short and long vowel sound sorting activity.
It is based off the letter Oo and orange juice.
Here is the mat with the short octopus spot with the long oval spot.
long and short vowel sorting for the letter Oo

The student looks at the images and says the word.
Then the sort that orange slice into the long or short vowel sound side.
vowel sorting

And here is the matching printable for a quick assessment.
Oo vowel sorting printable
I hope this letter pack inspires you and your students.
AND I have a freebie for you.

To grab this freebie, you have to click the PREVIEW bar and download the preview file.
And here is a glimpse of the whole Letter Oo {Print & Play Pack}.