Skilled readers rely on the spellings of words to
the words found in text. It is important for students who are learning
to rely on phoneme-grapheme correspondences. The goal for this lesson
students to learn to spell and read words using the correspondence o_e = /O/. Students will have the
opportunity to spell words with the o_e
= /O/ correspondence and apply the spelling strategies to reading.
*Elkonin letterboxes for each student
The following letters in a plastic
bag for each
student: h, o, m, e, r, s, c, a, n, d, t, t, i, p, l, c, b, k (two t’s are needed for this lesson)
Large Elkonin letterboxes with
the center of each box for the teacher
The following letters with
Velcro/tape on the
back for the teacher (letters should be large enough for all students
h, o, m, e, r, s, c, a, n, d, t, t, i, p, l, c, b, k (two t’s
are needed for this lesson)
Markers/chalk for white
List of words separated by the
phonemes for the teacher
 rose, can, dome, tip
 flop, slope, spine,
List of words spelled for each
should be in a different order than when they were spelled)
Flashcards of the following words: flat, smoke, dive, sneak, mope, crush, plop,
Lists of words that are on the
assessment (one for each student)
1. Before beginning the lesson,
it would be a great idea to review some of the long vowel sounds that
were previously learned such as a_e = /A/. To review this
correspondence, the teacher may say "Do you remember
when we learned about the /A/ sound and how there was something special
about it? Does anyone
remember what was so special about this sound, /A/?"
Give students time to respond. If no one responds, take the opportunity
to remind them that “some
words with the /A/ sound have
what we call a silent e. Let’s see if we hear the /A/
sound in the word cane? /c/ /A/ /n/. I hear the /A/
sound, but let’s see if we can
spell this word on the board. The first sound that really sticks out in
my mind in the word cane is the /A/ sound (teacher
writes an a on the board). If we
leave this letter (pointing to
the a) here by itself, it makes the /a/ sound. Is
there anything that we can do to make it say /A/?" Hopefully students
the right response; if not, inform them that we can
add a silent e at the very end. Help them further
understand by telling them that the silent e pinches
the a to
make it say its name. The next sound that I hear the
/k/ sound. (teacher writes a c) The last sound we hear
in the word /c/ /A/ /n/ is the /n sound (teacher writes
an n on the
board). "It seems that we have all the sounds, and we see that this
words says /c/ /A/ /n/, cane."
*Elkonin letterboxes may be made for
each student by cutting
cardstock paper into 4" x 4" squares and taping them together so that
easily fold. For teacher letterboxes, ¼ of a poster board may be
used for each
letterbox, using the same taping method.
- After reviewing, ask the students
"what do you say when you’ve dropped something or you’ve done something
that you didn’t mean to do?" Allow students to answer, hoping that one
says ‘uh oh’. If not, tell them "When I drop something or I do
something that I didn’t mean to do, I sometimes say ‘uh oh’. Well
today, we are going to learn about the /O/ sound and how and where we
find it in words.
- "Just as we just spelled words with
/A/ sound in them, we can spell words with the /O/ sound the same way
by adding a silent e. If I wanted to spell the word bone, I would say the word to my self and stretch it out
so that I could hear each sound - /b/ /O/ /n/. In this word, the first
sound that really sticks out is the /O/ sound." Write the letter o on the board. If I leave this letter (pointing to the o) here by itself, it makes the /o/ sound, but I want it
to make the /O/ sound. To make it say the /O/ sound, I want to place a
silent e at the end of my word. Remember that the
silent e pinches the o and makes it
say its name. Now that I have the /O/ sound, I want to get the rest of
the sounds in the word /b/ /O/ /n/. The next sound that I hear is /b/."
Write a b on the board. The last sound that I hear in
the word /b/ /O/ /n/ is /n/." Explain to the students that sometimes we
place the letter n between the o and
the e because the e is so silent,
it’s almost as if it isn’t there.
- Allow the students to practice finding
the /O/ sound by giving them example words such as joke,
club, and cone. During this time, ask students
for their thought processes in finding the /O/ sound. With each word
that has the /O/ sound, go to the board and allow the students to
instruct you on the spelling.
- "Now that we’ve learned about the /O/
sound and we’ve figured out how to find it in words that we say, we’re
going to see if we can spell words with the /O/ sound in them." At this
time, give students their individual Elkonin boxes and plastic bags.
Ask students to remove their letters from the bag and fold their
Elkonin boxes so that three of them are showing. Also take this time to
set up your letterboxes on the board.
- "Remember when I said that I wanted to
spell the word bone and I said each sound to myself
and then wrote it on the board? Well, that’s what I want you to do as
we begin spelling these words. Each individual sound, NOT letter, goes
into each letterbox." Repeat if necessary. "Since we’re using the
letterboxes, the silent e that we sometimes find at
the end of words goes outside of the letterboxes because we don’t hear
it." For example, if we use the word joke that we
spelled earlier, we would say the word to ourselves so that we hear
each individual sound. When we found the sounds, we would put the /j/
sound in the first letterbox, the /O/ sound in the second letterbox,
and the /k/ sound in the third letterbox." Teacher places sounds in the
appropriate letterboxes as he/she instructs. "If we read this word, it
would say /j/ /o/ /k/. We want it to say /j/ /O/ /k/, so we would need
to place the silent e outside the letterboxes to let
us know that the o is going to say its name.
- "Since everyone has their letterboxes
folded to where only three are showing, I think we’re ready to begin
spelling words! Remember to think about each sound that you hear and
place each sound into a different letterbox. Using three letterboxes,
the first word I want you to spell is home. After I
left school, I went straight home." Repeat the word and same/different
sentence, allowing students to spell the word and place each sound in
the correct box. Take this time to walk around and observe each student
as they begin spelling words. If you notice any problems students are
having, take this time to model for them how to spell the word as you
did with bone, and joke. After
students are done spelling the word, ask them to clear all the letters
from the letterboxes. Continue this procedure by finishing all the
three phoneme words (rose, can, dome, tip), then the four phoneme words
(slope, spine, close, state, flop) and then the five phoneme words
(stroke). Ask students to change the number of letterboxes at the end
of each list.
- Once all the words have been spelled,
give each student a list of words. "Now that we’ve finished spelling
our words, we are going to read this word list from top to bottom. As I
clap, I want you to read each word."
- After reading the list, gather the
students together and give a brief book talk about the book Is
Jo Home? "This is a story about a little dog who really wants to
play with Jo. He searches and searches for Jo so they can play
together. In order to find out what Jo and the dog do, we’re going to
read the story. While you’re reading, I want you to pay attention to
words with the /O/ sound and see how they are spelled."
- For assessment, allow each student to
read Is Jo Home? and take a running record.
Then show each student flashcards with words including o_e = /O/ and previous correspondences learned. Allow the
student to read each word while you check the words on a list, making
note of any miscues. The word list may include words such as flat, smoke, dive, sneak, mope, crush, plop, stone, and crop.
Words with the /o/ sound will be useful in order for students to be
able to distinguish between the short and long o.
Barton, Sarah. Oooohh My!
Cushman, Shelia. Is Jo
Home? Carson, CA. Educational Insights. 1990.
Lesniak, Theresa and Bruce
Murray. 1999. "Teaching Reading."
Teacher. Vol. 52. No. 6. Pgs. 644-650.
Click here to return to Inventions.