Blending is Fun
Lori Gatling

Rationale:  Getting children to blend phonemes and sounds to make words is important in learning to read.  Once they know phonemes of consonants and short vowels, they can blend these sounds together and make words.  The purpose of this activity is to teach children to blend phonemes together to be able to form words.

Materials:  Red cards with one consonant on each, yellow cards with one vowel on each, a large picture of a slide in a playground with steps, a pocket for the bottom of the slide to hold a consonant card, individual copies of the slide for each child, small red and yellow cards for blending, and large flash cards with letters for phoneme practice.

Procedure:  1.  Introduce this lesson by discussing the differences between vowels and consonants.  “Can anyone raise their hand and tell me a vowel?  That’s right, now can you tell me what sound that vowel makes?  Can anyone tell me a consonant?  Great, and what sound does that make?”  Hold up the large flash cards and have the students make the mouth moves together.

2.  Tell the students the following story:
The alphabet sounds were out at recess.  Several of the sounds wanted to go down the slide (take out the large slide).  All the consonants loved to play on the slide, but the vowels never went on the slide.  One day /k/ said to /a/, “come on, let’s go play on the slide” /a/ said, “no thank you.”  You see all the vowels were really afraid to slide down.  But /k/ said, “It is really fun, I’ll go down with you so you won’t be afraid.”  /a/ though about it but said he was afraid he might fall off when he got to the bottom, so he still didn’t want to go.  Well, /t/ hear them talking and said he would be glad to wait at the bottom to catch /a/ so he wouldn’t fall.  After a little coaxing, /a/ decided to try.  So /k/ and /a/ went up the steps together.

3.  Hold the ‘c’ card and the ‘a’ card together as you move them up the steps of the slide saying “ca,ca, ca.”  (Have everyone say the sounds with you.)

4.  Have the ‘t’ card waiting in a pocket at the bottom of the slide.  When ‘ca’ reaches the top, they slide down together saying “ca,a,a,a,a,a,a” until they bump into /t/ forming the word ‘cat.’

5.  Continue the story:
/a/ thought that was really fun and they made a word.  Did you hear what they said?  They made “cat” /a/ wanted to do that again.  This time /p/ waited at the bottom of the slide an /k/ and /a/ went up the slide again.  ‘ca,a,a,a,a,a,a’ (up the steps) ‘ca,a,a,a’ (on the way down).  ‘p’ (as they bump into /p/ at the bottom).  “Hooray!”  Shouted /a/.  “We made another word, cap!”  Soon the other vowels saw how much fun /a/ was having and they wanted to try too!

6.  Continue the process of sliding down the slide with different consonants and vowel sounds creating new words.  Continue to model each sound and word.

7.  For assessment have the children practice blending words (that you write on the board, fat, bat, rat, cup, pup, and so on) together with their own slide and cards.  Remind them to always have a red card go down with another yellow card and bump into another red card.

8.  Read the book Tom and His Mom (found in Dr. Murray’s classroom and model the words in the book.


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