Oh! Let’s go Home!

Beginning to Read
Erin Dyle

Rationale: Skilled readers rely on the spellings of words to recognize the word. Students who are learning to read rely on the letter-sound correspondents to decode the word. Long vowels have some of the trickier correspondences. The goal of this lesson is for students to learn to spell and read words with the long O vowel o_e = /O/. This is going to be accomplished by presenting that the letters o_e says /O/. The students will spell words with the /O/ sound using Elkonin letterboxes and then apply the spelling strategies to reading.


6 box Elkonin letter boxes for each students,

individual plastic bags with the letters:{a, e, o, f, z, b, h, t, s, n, r, k, l, c, m}for each student,

large teacher size letters: { a, e, o, f, z, b, h, t, s, n, r, k, l, c, m } with Velcro on back,

large dry erase board with Velcro strips,

classroom set of the book, Is Jo Home? (By Shelia Cushman, Educational Insights)

Before actually going into the lesson review some long vowels. “Students I am going to call out some words for you to spell as review of long vowels. I am going to call someone to come help me spell a word with big letters. I want everyone to make sure they are spelling the word right.” The student attaches the Velcro on the back of the teacher letters to the Velcro on the board to spell the words. Have students spell the words; tree, place, brain, crave, smile. After each student has spelled a word, I will ask the others if they agree with the spelling.  If not then we will correct the spelling as a group

  1. Explain to the students what the goal of the lesson today is, “Alright kids, today we are going to have some awesome fun! We are going to spell and read words with the /O/ sound in them. You make the sound when you get excited about something like, OH, Yeah! You are going to be able to read some tricky words like stone, much easier and much faster after this!”
  2. Ask the students, “Do you hear the /O/ in the word stone? Say with me the sounds in stone. /s/, /t/, /O/, /n/. I heard the /O/ too! But there is one silent sound that we don’t hear.  Can anyone tell me what that sound is?  That’s right, the e on the end. Remember with long /A/ that there was a silent e?  Well, we can remember this easier because it’s the same with long /O/.”
  3. Model for the students. “Long vowels can sometimes be hard for us to hear.  Let’s try together in the word stone. I hear ssss, tttt, O, nnnn. Now remember, I don’t hear the e.  Raise your hand if you can remember why”.  I wait for someone to raise their hand hopefully.  “That’s right! It’s because it’s silent on the end!  Great job!” Do the same for home. “The word home is the same way, I hear /h/ /O/ /m/ but the silent e is on the end helping O say its name. Does anyone have any questions so far?”  I will help students with any questions they have now.  If the question will be covered later in the lesson, I will say “That’s a great question; we’re going to get to that in just a minute!”
  4. Students will now practice spelling the /O/ sound. Give each student a plastic bag with letters in them and an Elkonin box. It should be explained that each box represents a sound, not a letter.  It’s important to emphasize that if a letter does not make a sound it should not be put in a box.  “Now you are going to give me a chance to see how great you are at spelling words! Take out your letterboxes and letters. (Allow time to follow directions).  Fold them in half where only three are showing. Each box represents a sound. For example, the word take is a little difficult. It is spelled T-A-K-E. T would go in the first box, A in the second, K in the third, and then there is silent E. Since it does not make a sound we place it outside the boxes at the end.” (Model as you give directions drawing boxes around the Velcro on the dry erase board.) Next, have the students spell words with o_e= /O/. “Using three boxes please spell the word home. They finally got home. Spell home.” Check each student’s spelling. For three boxes repeat with word rose, pole, and can. Have students move to four boxes spelling the words; snore, read, broke, close, and froze. Have students move to five boxes spelling the word strode, moses.
  5. Once students have spelled all the words have them look at the board.  You spell the words on the board and have the students read them. “Students now look at the board. I am going to spell a word and I want you to read it. You are going to whisper the word to your neighbor.” Spell the word home. Have students whisper the word that you spelled to their next door friend and then call on a student to spell the word. Do this for all the words the students spelled.
  6. Students will get in small groups while each student will read the decodable text, Is Jo Home? “Students, we will be doing a reading partner activity. I would like for you to get with your usual reading group. You will be reading Is Jo Home? This is a story about a little dog who really wants to play with his friend Jo.  All day long he thinks about all the things they can do and wonders if she will be home. Chose which one of you will go first and start reading to find out if the dog and Jo ever play together.” Give the students time so each can read to each other.
  7. Assessment: Each student will come to you and read Is Jo Home? while you make a running records reading miscues.

Adams, Marilyn. Beginning to Read: Thinking and Learning about Print. 1990. pgs. 23- 30, 76-82.

Cushman, Shelia. Is Jo Home? Carson, CA. Educational Insights. 1990.

Barton, Sarah.  Reading Genie, Murray, Bruce.  http://www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/constr/bartonbr.html  2005.  

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