Laura deVeer
Beginning Reading Lesson Design

Cake on the Lake

Rationale: For children to become fluent readers, they must learn to break down the alphabetic code.  As teachers we need to teach children different correspondences they will come across when reading.  This lesson is designed to help children understand that öa_e makes the /A/ sound.  The children will learn this correspondence by reading and writing words with this letter combination.

Materials: Elkonin letterboxes for each child, a set of lower case letters for each child, poster with rhyme on it, A Race on the Lake (big book), list of
-a_e words for techer (listed below), & an index card for each child.
Letterbox words: ate, lake, same, cake, Nate, bake, hate, tame, cane, & plate
Letterbox letters: a, e, t, k, l, s, m, n, h, c, k, p

1. Introduce the lesson by explaining to children that one way to spell the long A is with the letters a_e  ãChildren today we are going to learn about the long /A/ sound.  You can spell it lots of different ways but today we will learn one very important one. .  If you follow a vowel with a consonant and an e, the vowel says its name. (write it on the board)  We will practice reading and writing lots of words that look like this.ä
2. ãWhen these special letters are all lined up next to each other they will say that long /A/ sound.  For example, one word that has the long /A/ sound is something we all like to eat on our birthdays- CAKE! (write it on the board- show children the öake)  Do you hear the /A/ sound in cat or lake?
3. Letâs try a rhyme (on poster).  ãNate ate cake on a plate at the lake.ä  Everybody say it together with me.  Lets say it again but this time stretch out the long /A/ sound.  ãNaaate aaate caaake on a plaaate by the laaake.ä  Lets try it one more time, but this time I want you to break off the letters that come before the A.  ã/N/- ate ate /c/-ake on a /pl/- ate by the /l/- ake.ä  Good job boys and girls.
4. ãWe are going to use our letterboxes to spell some words with öa_e.  Now when we use our letterboxes we will put the silent e next to the last letterbox because it doesnât make a sound.  Lets spell some words with these special letters in it.  First we will do one together on the board.  (teacher draws 3 boxes on the board)  Lets spell cake together.  The first box contains a c, the second an a, the third a k, and the e goes to the right of the third box.  Now I want you to take out your letterboxes and letters and you will have a chance to do it on your own.
5. ãFold your letterboxes so you have 2 boxes showing.  The first word I want you to spell is ate.  Okay now I want you to fold your boxes so you have 3 boxes showing.  Now I want you to spell, lake·.same·cake·Nate·bake· hate·tame·cane·.  Clear your letters off and fold your boxes so there are 4 boxes showing and spell plate·frame·shade.  (allowing time for children to spell each word)  Alright now put your letterboxes and letters away.  (while they do that write the words on the board)  Ask the children to say the words out loud when I point to them on the board.
6. Read the story A Race on the Lake and talk about it.  Reread the story and have students raise their hands when they hear words that have the öa_e correspondence we talked about.  List their words on the board.  Have each student draw the outline of a lake and write a story inside the lake using invented spelling.  Display their work.
7. For assessment, give each child an index card and have them write öa_e on one side and a ö on the other side.  I will erase the words from the board and one by one call them out along with some other words without this correspondence in it.  If the students recognize that correspondence they will raise their card with the appropriate side facing me.  I will have a roll in my hand as I do this and as I call out the words check off the students that have mastered this skill.

Reference:  Murray, B.A. & Lesniak, T. (1999).  The letterbox lesson: A hands-on approach for teaching decoding.  The Reading Teacher, p644-650.

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