Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Long Vowels: Simple Ways to Get Started

For the first several weeks of school we spend loads of time working with short vowels.  We read with them, spell with them, sort with them, create rhymes with them, trade them out to create different words . . . you name it, we do it.  But, all of this work is (or at least should be) review.  
Today was our first day of many that we really focused on long vowel sounds.  Over the next few months, we'll spend lots of time learning about letter patterns that make the long vowel sounds.

My very favorite tool for teaching students about reading words with long vowel sounds is the saying, "Two vowels in a word, the first vowel says it's name, the second vowel plays the quiet game."  (There are other similar saying that get the point across as well.  This variation just sticks with me the best).
I say this to my young learners over and over and over.  Eventually they know it by heart.

I made these anchor charts to use as headers on the board as we brainstorm words that follow the two vowels pattern.  I (or the students) write words on the board and then we mark the vowel that says its name and cross out the one that's playing the quiet game.  Over the next few days, I'll repeat this activity using different words that follow the same pattern.

If you would like a free set of these anchor charts, click on the picture below.  There are eleven different charts with different long vowel combinations.  The clip art is from Graphics from the Pond and the fonts are by Kimberly Geswein.

Another simple way to practice this (or any other) spelling pattern is an anchor activity I like to call fold and draw.  Students fold their paper to create boxes.  In each box, they will write a word using the spelling pattern and then illustrate it.  Students can fold their papers twice to have four boxes or they can fold it three times to create six boxes.  
Like the anchor chart activity above, students can repeat this activity again by spelling different words and drawing different illustrations.

One more way we are practicing long vowels is with my recently bundled Words at Work Mega Pack {Word Work for Long Vowels}.  I designed these activities to be consistent as we progress to each vowel.  I want students to focus more on the skill than trying to figure what they are supposed to do to complete the task.

This packet works perfectly for independent assignments in class, as a word work practice, or as homework.  All of the activities are low prep, just print and go.  If you want more details more details, click on the picture below.

There are so many ways to tackle long vowels.  I love finding effective, simple, and easy to implement ways to practice this important skill.  I hope some of these ideas will be helpful to you.
Have a great week.  

1 comment:

  1. Just saw your Instagram post and hopped right over! So adorable. Great work and thanks tons for the fabulous freebie!! (litlovegal1) ;)
    Literacy Loving Gals