A Good Day for ay/ai
Beginning Reading
Jennifer Reinhart

Rationale.  Students will learn the vowel sound ai/ay.  They will learn to spell words containing the sound and where each spelling is appropriate.  It is important for students to know that ai is used in the middle of words while ay is used at the end of words.  Explicit instruction will show students when each spelling is used.  We will then practice what we learned through spelling of words through a letterbox lesson and reading a book that contains different ai/ay words.


White board, markers, bags containing the letters p, a, i, n, l, y, w, d, s, r, b, t, c, m and elkonin boxes for each student, 3 ai/ay worksheets



1. Explain that in the English language some sounds are spelled differently depending on where the sound is in the word.  Today we are going to learn  about the sound /A/.  When you hear this sound think of a person saying AAAAAA or hello.  Lets all say AAAA together.  As we say it lets wave as if we are saying hello. (say it together)

2. Now we are going to say a tongue twister that uses the /A/ sound.  (Put tongue twister up on the board so they can read it as we say it together) Abe the ape ate Amys acorn. Now lets make all the words that have the /A/ sound longer.  Aaaabe the Aaaape Aaaate Aaaamys Aaaacorn.  Very good.

 3. Now lets look at what makes the /A/ sound in words.  Look at the word rain.  Lets break it up and find the /A/ sound.  Rrrr-ai-n.  Rrrr-aaaii-n.  There it is.  In this word ai=/A/.  What about day.  Dddd-ay.  Dddd-aaay.  There it is at the end.  In this word ay=/A/.  If we look at the two words, when the /A/ sound is in the middle of a word it is spelled ai, if the /A/ sound is at the end of a word it is spelled ay.

4. Lets practice spelling some of these words.  (Hand out bags to each child with the letters they will use each with elkonin boxes inside.).  Lets lay out the boxes so we have 3 boxes showing.  The first word we are going to spell is pain.  (Teacher will walk around and make sure everyone has spelled it correctly).  Very good.  The next word is play.  (Walk around to check they have the correct word.  The next word is way.  For the next words when they look like they have finished have one student raise their hand and say how they spelled it and write the word on the board so others can check their work.  Other words- (3 phoneme) paid, say (4 phoneme)  spray, braid, stair, claim (5 phoneme) strain.  (Letters needed will be p, a, i, n, l, y, w, d, s, r, b, t, c, m)

5. Distribute the first two worksheet pages.  Go over with them what to do in each part.  For the first part do a couple of the ai words and a couple ay words.  For the second section give examples of sentences.  On the second page do the first two as a class.  For the rhyming parts help with the first one they let the students do the rest on their own.  Give the students time and walk around to make sure they are doing each part correctly.

6. Now we are going to read James and the Good Day. James is so excited, he thinks its going to be a good day.  He is going to play with his tug boat in the bath tub.  Lets see how it fills up.  Uh-oh looks like its about to overflow.  What do you think is going to happen if it overflows?  Lets read the story to find out! (Read the story and talk before we turn.  After have students list some words that they saw heard in the book with the ai/ay=/A/ sound.  List on the board so the while class can see.

7. For assessment distribute a last ai/ay worksheet page.  It is similar to the first worksheet page.  Explain the directions again.  Students should be able to apply their knowledge from the lesson and previous worksheet to complete the page.



Aspland, Gordon.  Steps2learning. Literacy resources for Letters and Sounds. <http://www.steps2learning.co.uk/resourceareas/2-key-stage-1-resources-for-letters-and-sounds-phases-2-and-3/>.

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