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Activity 1: Spin a Word Family

In this activity the students learn to match the first letter of a word to a rime. They learn
to identify what letter combinations make words and how to identify when they do not make real
words by sounding out the words as they see them. It is a fun and creative way for children to
learn about rimes as well as rhymes!
For this lesson, the teacher will have the wheels pre-made for the students. The students
can color the wheel and strips that attach to the wheel to personalize the activity for the students.
The circle contains single letters around its perimeter that are right-side-up only when it is next
to the strip. The strip is the rime of the word that has two or more letters written on it. As you
spin the wheel, it makes up different words for the student. The example on Pinterest has the
ending –ug on it and the wheel has the letters b, p, r, c, n, m, etc. Notice that this combination has
two letters that do not combine with the ending to make real words. You can create it this way or
where all the letters can combine with the ending to create a real word. Have the students sound
out the letter sounds on the strip. Ask them how many words they can find using the letters on
the wheel (they can do this by themselves or in pairs). After everyone is done, have the students
share how many words they found. As a class, go over the words and sound them out. You can
even go over the pairs that are not real words and explain why they do not make real words.
After the activity, have the students write a short poem about their day using the rhyming
techniques they just learned. This is a great tool to teach rhyming words and the patterns that
they make because it shows that words with the same ending letters have the same ending
sounds. This strategy has the children interacting with the text and using it in oral and written
language. Patricia Cunningham uses a similar strategy to teach rhyming words on pages 145-146

of her textbook “Phonics They Use.” She states that this lesson “helps students learn to use
patterns to decode and spell hundreds of words” (Cunningham 145).

Activity 2: Consonant Digraph Garden
In this activity, the students learn to identify three consonant digraphs: ch, sh, and th.
They learn how to use the digraphs and the sounds they make at the beginning of the word and at
the end of the word.
For this activity, each student picks out a few different color sheets of paper to create
flowers. Have them cut out the stems then the middle of the daisy and the petals. In the middle
circle of each flower (for this activity there will be three) write the digraph that you are teaching
the students about. On each of the petals write one word that contains that digraph in it. One
example the website used was ch: cheese, chin, chase, each, much, check, and such. This activity
could be used for any consonant or vowel digraph. Before and after creating these flowers, you
could go over the words and the digraphs as a class and say them out loud. This activity gives the
students a hands-on learning experience with the words which helps them retain the information
and gives them something to be proud of as an end result. It creates memories of making them
and writing out the words which will help them recall how to spell these words and how these
digraphs work. This is also a great lesson for English language learners as well because it teaches
them the different sounds that are predominant in the English language that are not in other
languages.
Jenae. (April 12, 2013). Consonant Digraph Garden. I Can TEACH My Child. Retrieved from
http://www.icanteachmychild.com
Holowell, Malia. (September 12, 2012). Spin a Word Family. Playdough to Plato. Retrieved

from http://www.playdoughtoplato.com/spin-a-word-family/
Cunningham, P. (1991). Phonics they use: Words for reading and writing. New York, NY:
HarperCollins.

Literacy Toolkit Rubric Concept: Phonics
Criterion Exceeds
Meets
Expectations-4 Expectations
pts
3.5 points
Accurate and
Definition Meets

Name:
Approaching
Expectations- 3
pts
Accurate and
comprehensive.

Some
inaccurate
parts or
missing.

Not Yet
0-2.9 pts

Expectations and
includes an
additional outside
reference beyond
our texts.

comprehensive.
Makes reference to or
cites course texts and
explains how the
concept is important
to reading

Activity
1

Exceeds
Expectations

Meets
Expectations

Approaching
Expectations

Not Yet

Meets the
Learning
Objective
for this

The activity makes
the sound / symbol
relationship (or
structural analysis) a

The chosen activity is
clearly focused on the
sound/symbol
relationship or

The chosen activity is
clearly focused on the
sound/symbol
relationship or

The chosen
activity does
not address
word study

Concept

generative process
that will help decode
many more words.

The directions for
Clear
Directions this activity are

meaningful structural
analysis in an
authentic context.

meaningful structural
analysis, but is simply
an isolated
worksheet.
The directions for this
activity are somewhat
clear. The reader has
to access additional
sources to follow the
steps clearly.
A rationale is listed,
but is focused only on
student engagement,
rather than research
or best practices from
class notes or
textbooks, or
supports a different
literacy goal.

either through
phonics or
structural
analysis.

accurate and clear.
A novice teacher
could follow the
steps you wrote.
Meets
expectations and
includes
additional
reasoning/rational
e from text or
external citation.

The directions for this
activity are accurate
and clear. An
experienced teacher
could follow the steps
you wrote.
Written rationale
demonstrates strong
understanding of why
this strategy / activity
supports the literacy
goal linking to
practices to promote.

Activity
2

Exceeds
Expectations

Meets
Expectations

Approaching
Expectations

Not Yet

Meets the
Learning
Objective
for this
Concept

The activity makes
the sound / symbol
relationship (or
structural analysis) a
generative process
that will help decode
many more words.

The chosen activity is
clearly focused on the
sound/symbol
relationship or
meaningful structural
analysis in an
authentic context.

The chosen activity is
clearly focused on the
sound/symbol
relationship or
meaningful structural
analysis, but is simply
an isolated
worksheet.
The directions for this
activity are somewhat
clear. The reader has
to access additional
sources to follow the
steps clearly.
A rationale is listed,
but is focused only on
student engagement,
rather than research
or best practices from
class notes or
textbooks.

The chosen
activity does
not address
word study
either through
phonics or
structural
analysis.

Rationale

The directions for
Clear
Directions this activity are

Rationale

accurate and clear.
A novice teacher
could follow the
steps you wrote.
Meets
expectations and
includes
additional
reasoning/rational
e from text or
external citation.

The directions for this
activity are accurate
and clear. An
experienced teacher
could follow the steps
you wrote.
Written rationale
demonstrates strong
understanding of why
this strategy / activity
supports the literacy
goal linking to
practices to promote.

You didn’t
write, or
paraphrase
the steps.
Rationale is
missing.

You didn’t
write, or
paraphrase
the steps.
Rationale is
missing.

Each reviewer should use a different color pen/highlighter for the review/evaluation
with a check in that color.
_____ self-evaluation

*ELL

_____ peer evaluation

Exceeds
Expectations

Meets
Expectations

_____ instructor evaluation

Approaching
Expectations

Not Yet

Appropriate and
effective
accommodations
for ELL are
described for
more than two of
the total number
of activities in the
toolkit with a
specific rationale
for how they
support ELL.
*ELL support is not required for

ELL
Accommo
dations

Appropriate and
effective
accommodations for
ELL are described for
two of the total
number of activities in
the toolkit with a
specific rationale for
how they support ELL.

Appropriate and
effective
accommodations for
ELL are described for
one of the total
number of activities in
the toolkit with a
specific rationale for
how they support ELL.

ELL support is
missing from
the toolkit as a
whole.

each pillar – only two.

Each reviewer should use a different color pen/highlighter for the review/evaluation
with a check in that color.
_____ self-evaluation

_____ peer evaluation

_____ i