"Baking a Cake with A!"


a_e= /A/

Christie Blomeyer


Rationale: This lesson teaches children about the long vowel correspondence a_e = /A/. In order to be able to read, children must learn to recognize the spellings that map word pronunciations. In this lesson children will learn to spell and read words containing the spelling a_e. They will learn a representation  and saying of 'baking a cake with A' and the Fonze' A, they will spell and read words containing this spelling in a Letterbox lesson, and read a decodable book that focuses on the correspondence a_e = /A/, Jane and Babe.

Materials: Graphic image of Fonze'; cover-up critter; smart board Elkonin boxes for modeling and individual Elkonin boxes for each student; smartboard letters for teacher: e, b,a, k, e, c, l, t, h; list of spelling words on poster or whiteboard to read: cape, cake, lake, take, hate; decodable text: Jane and Babe.


1. Say: In order to become expert readers we need to learn the code that tells us how to pronounce words. We have already learned to read short vowel words with o, like top, and today we are going to learn about long O and the silent e signal that is used to make O say its name, /A/. When I say /A/ I think of Fonze's saying "AAAA". [show graphic image]. Now let’s look at the spelling of /A/ that we’ll learn today. One way to spell /A/ is with the letter a and e signal e at the end of the word to tell me to say A’s name. [Write a_e on the board.] This blank line here means there is a consonant after a, and at the end of the word there is a little silent e signal. I will also have a picture of a chef to help children remember the saying "baking a cake with A!"

2. Say: Before we learn about the spelling of /A/, we need to listen for it in some words.

When I listen for /A/ in words, I hear a say its name /A/ and my mouth stretches like this.

Make vocal gesture for /A/.] I’ll show you first: home. I heard o say its name and I felt my lips make a little o [make a circle motion around pursed lips]. There is a long A in bake.

Now I’m going to see if it’s in bike. Hmm, I didn’t hear 'A' say its name and my mouth didn't stretch. Now you try. If you hear /A/ say, “We made a cake!” If you don’t hear /A/ say, "AAAA, I didn't hear it."  Is it in lake, snake, take, top, ripe, hat, map, snack? [Have children stretch their mouths to make /A/ say its name.


3. Let's spell the word bake. "I want to bake a cake!" First, I need to know how many phonemes I have in the word so I stretch it out and count: /b/A/k/ E. I need 3 boxes. Because I hear /A/ after /b/, and /k/ after /A/, we will only need 3 boxes because it is a silent letter /e/, but the 'a' makes it say /A/.

4. Say: Let's spell some words that have short a and long a in them! I am going to do an example first, and then I will let you all do one. I am going to spell the word cape. First, we need three boxes. "C" goes in the first box, then "a" in the second and "P" in the third. The "E" goes on the outside of the box because it is silent. This word is "cape". This is the long "A" sound. Now I’m going to have you spell some words in letterboxes. Let's talk about the two kinds of a's. One "a" sounds like a crying baby, like in pat. The other kind of "a" sounds like Fonze' saying "A" or like in "bake a cake". Can anyone help me think of words that have the short "a" in them, like pat? Good job! Can anyone think of words that have the long "A" in them like cake? Awesome, y'all are so smart! Now we are going to do our letterboxes. Let's listen for /A/ and don’t forget to put the signal silent e at the end, outside the boxes. Here’s the word: make, I like to make cakes; make. [Allow children to spell remaining words: snake, take, lake, hate, cape, pat, lap, stare, and share.]

5. Say: Now I am going to let you read the words you’ve spelled. [Have children read words in unison. Afterwards, call on individuals to read one word on the list until everyone has had a turn.] We will do this letterbox activity on the smart board and children will be able to manipulate letters as needed. Let’s look at the word lake. We know that a_e says ‘A’, so we can read the rest of the word easily. The first sound in lake is ‘llll’, so we have ‘lll’ and ‘A’. Last, we have ‘k’. So all together we have /l/ /A/ /k/. This is how you read an a_e word.

6. Say: You all have done a great job and reading words with our new spelling for /A/: a_e. Now we are going to read a book called Jane and Babe. Jane and Babe are great friends! Babe is a different kind of friend because he is a lion! Will Babe and Jane be friends forever? Let's read on to see what kinds of thing they do together! [Children pair up and take turns reading alternate pages each while teacher walks around the room monitoring progress. After individual paired reading, the class rereads Jane and Babe aloud together, and stops between page turns to discuss the plot.]




 E(beside 'k')

7. Say: Before we finish up with our lesson about one way to spell /A/ = a_e, we are going to do an activity. Make sure you do your very best so I know that you know how to use /A/. First, you are going to read words and you are going to decide which ones are /A/= a_e words. You will then fill them in these blanks. I will then go over these worksheets once the students have completed them and work individually with students who do not grasp this concept.



Jane and Babe. Educational Insights: Phonics Readers. Carson, CA: 1990.

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