Blending Under the Sea
Beginning Reading
Mallory Hall
Rationale:  Getting kids to blend sounds to make words is an essential step in learning to read. Once a child knows consonant and short vowel sounds, 
they can learn to blend these sounds together to make words. Once they learn how to do this they are on the right track and they are reading! Students will be
able to blend sounds together to form words.
Draw a picture of the sea on the board or on chart paper
All the letters of the alphabet

All vowels
Velcro (something sticky) on the back of all letters
Chart paper to stick words up
1. First draw a picture of water to resemble the ocean with lots of space to resemble where the fish swim under the water. 
2. Place all of your alphabet, plus the vowels “underwater”.  Explain to the children what blending is and tell them that when we read we are blending 
sounds together to make words.  “When we blend sounds together, we are making words.  When we blend sounds together, our sounds are smooth.”
3. Model for the students that /b/, /a/, /t/ all blend together to make the word bat.  Let’s first talk about what our first two letters say /b/ /a/….Good /ba/ now 
let’s go a step further and add the /t/. What word did we make?....bat! Good job! Explain to the children that all words need consonants and vowels. 
As in the word bat….that word has to have the vowel to be a word.  Without the a, there would be no word.  All words must have vowels.
4. Now tell them about your ocean picture.  Tell them a story of how all the letters decided to go swimming one day in the great big ocean.  This is the all of the
 letters favorite activity to do together.  All the consonants that is! The vowels were afraid of the ocean and they were very afraid of SHARKS!  Explain to the
children that consonants didn’t like the thought of the vowels being scared of the ocean.  So the consonants decide to accompany the vowels so they won’t be so
afraid.  So along came the /h/ (say the letter sound instead of the letter name) and started swimming with the /a/.  If the /h/ and the /a/ are swimming together, what
sound do we have?.../ha/…..Good!  Oh but that wasn’t enough the /a/ had to have two people on both sides of her to feel comforted.  So along came the /t/.
If the /h/, /a/, and /t/ are swimming side by side like this (demonstrate it on the board), what word do we have?....hat…Great job!
5.  Keep going with words such as cat, dog, hit, nut, pig, hen, fin, sun, cup, mop, etc. If you think the students are comfortable with the game, let them come up 
and try a few.  I will assess the students using this activity.  I will let them have a chance to blend words “under the sea”.
6. Assessment:  I will then continue assessing the children by not using the “sea board” and asking the students if they can tell me what is small and swims in 
the ocean?....We will first pronounce the vowel i as /i/.  Its a /f//i//sh/…good fish.  I am thinking of a round circle in the sky. /s//u//n/.  Keep going and try to think
of different objects that are in the water or around water. I will then go around the room one by one and ask each child to come to the board and try this activity. 
7.  Display the words you make on the chart paper.
Harrison, Janice.  The Vowel Slide.

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