Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Free Kindergarten and First Grade Worksheets and Activities

Are you ready for a bunch of FREE kindergarten and first grade worksheets and activities?! I have compiled a list of my favorite 100% free math, reading, and writing resources for kids!

All you do is download and print :) So please sit back, scroll, and find some awesome new pages for your students or child... enjoy!


Let's start at the very beginning of phonics instruction after teaching letter sounds... Short A!

Here are some easy and fun Free Short A Clip Cards! All kids do is read the word in the middle of the card then put a clip on the correct picture. Fast, fun, easy reading practice. I absolutely love clip cards and made them for pretty much every phonics sound :) 

Free short a activities - adorable clip cards for reading CVC words practice!


I have an absolutely massive post showing all the fun ideas I love for teaching Short A if you want more cute ideas for short vowels! It is packed with pictures and tips! 

Another fun activity I love to do for every sound are my Secret Word worksheets! I made a set of Free Short A Secret Word Worksheets that you can grab. I absolutely love them! 

How they work: Kids cut out the letters and then use them to build each picture. THEN, they'll have letters left that they unscramble to figure out the secret word! So. much. fun. Like I said, I have these for every sound because they're such a fun activity!


For practice writing words with short A word families - I made a little book for each word family and have this cute -at word family book for free! Kids look at the picture on each page, read the word, and then write it on the lines. You can also have them write a sentence using the word to differentiate for your kids who are ready for sentences! :)

Free short a books with pictures for each word for kids to color and then write easy sentences on the lines


That book is from a big bundle of short vowel word family books! :) 

I also made little books like this for each phonics sound in a big bundle so I have this fun Free SH Digraph Little Book as a free sample too!

Free digraph book


Speaking of phonics, I have a few little packs you can download! Each of these is a type of worksheet I typically put in my no prep phonics packs. I use consistent activities throughout my packs so all you have to do each week is hand them the worksheet with the new sound since they know how to do it already, so if you use my no prep packs for other sounds, then you'll recognize these! :)

Free Bossy R worksheets

These Free Bossy R worksheets are super simple! Students trace the provided letters and then fill in the missing letters to complete the word. Then, they write the word they created on the lines below and color the picture. There are several levels, including a level where students simply trace the word (without any missing letters) for super easy differentiation to meet every little reader where they're at. :) If you've poked around here at all my posts of ideas, you know I care a lot about differentiating so that all kids feel successful but challenged, so you'll notice that a lot of my activities will have multiple levels...

Which is especially important in kindergarten and first grade since some phonics sounds are so tricky! This makes it very important for these hard reading concepts to be FUN and engaging. The pictures make them a lot more engaging while also providing support for young readers so you'll probably also notice that I use a lot of pictures, especially for difficult and/or complex sounds.

A great example of a relatively difficult, complex phonics skill is...

Reading words with the Vowel Sounds of Y! 

Free Phonics Worksheet Vowel Sounds of Y


This is another tricky concept... although probably not as tricky as Bossy R! This Free Sounds of Y Worksheet is a super quick and easy way to introduce the concept.

Kids sort each picture as to whether the Y in the word says the Y sound (yarn), the E sound (bunny), or the I sound (fly).

It also comes in a black and white version like the pages in my no prep packs so kids can color the pictures. All the pages in my no prep packs are black and white so that they're... well, no prep :) 


Speaking of no prep... I LOVE no prep activities for every subject... including writing!

This is one of my favorite writing prompts - If I Met an Alien! I love how creative kids get with their stories :)

Free writing prompts for first grade

This page is from my big pack of Space Writing Crafts if you want more for that theme BUT this exact craft is one of THREE super adorable crafts you can get for free (woohoo!) in my Free Back to School Writing Crafts pack! I hope you love them!

I just wrote about how to use these fun NO PREP writing crafts in my How to Make Writing Fun for 1st Graders article that shows how easy and awesome these are to make! That post shows the 4 easy steps to making these and how you literally only have to hit print to create beautiful crafts to put on your bulletin board. I think you'll love these and I'm so excited to be able to give you 3 of them for a ton of fun, free writing time!

I also have a free set of Valentine's Day Writing Crafts for seasonal fun! I also have these in Spanish!

Free Valentine's Day crafts

These make such a cute and easy activity to do for Valentine's Day! I show a few more pictures of them in my February Writing Prompts post if you want more fun writing ideas for February!


Another holiday I have a cute free item for is my Free Christmas No Prep Worksheets Pack!

Free Christmas Worksheets for first grade! Easy and cute reading and writing printables kids can do in December!

It comes with super cute Santa writing paper in a few levels, as well as reading activities like putting Christmas words in ABC order and reading simple sentences. I hope you love them!

I don't show them in my big December Writing Crafts post since they're not writing crafts but that post has a lot more fun Christmas activities if you want to see more Christmas themed writing ideas. That post has A LOT of ideas for writing prompts you can do if you need easy December craft ideas. 

Plus, it shows "If Santa Rode the Bus" which is one of my absolute favorite creative writing activities... and it's so fun to do it again in March for "If a Leprechaun Rode the Bus" which you can see in my March Writing Activities and Bossy R Activities post. Those 2 prompts are just too adorable with the silly things kids come up with that I couldn't not mention them! :)

For more seasonal fun, I love these Free Snowman Math Fact Family Worksheets!

Free Snowman Math Worksheets Fact Families Activity


Okay so this isn't really a worksheet or activity BUT it is SO helpful for 1st grade and kindergarten classrooms! Do you have kids hand you the most random objects that don't have a home?? Make an "I'm Lost!" bin!

Classroom labels free printables

This free classroom label is from my 20 Classroom Management Strategies You Can Use Right Away article! There are some more fun downloads in that post too :) 

You could also use this at home for anything kids find on the floor that they're not sure where it belongs. Way more helpful than bringing it to you when you're in the middle of doing something like cooking. It allows kids to be a bit more independent while cleaning up while also giving you the space to find the object's home at a time when you're less busy. It actually makes a cute lesson to put all the items in the bucket away together in a batch so they learn where they can put each thing the next time they find it, so it's a very teachable situation too :) Putting away the items is a fun thing you can do together and you can do it at a time when you have the energy to express appreciation for them having picked it up - sometimes it's hard to do that when they hand you a random hair tie while you're stirring spaghetti sauce, so this lets them handle those situations on their own and then allows space for you to get to it when you can give it your attention. I just love this handy little bucket if you can't tell! The lotion label in that post is also a favorite label of mine for the classroom or for at home.

Some more fun and FREE kindergarten and first grade items I have available:

Okay, I think that's all I'll show for now! I may add to this post so feel free to check back for more free kindergarten and first grade worksheets and activities. I hope you were able to grab a bunch of fun new resources to use in your classroom or with your child at home!

I'd love if you took a second to follow me in the places you hang out the most if you enjoyed this post and want to see when I post fun new things! The little icons at the top right of this page are a few of the places on social media you can follow along :) 

I also highly recommend you join Miss Giraffe's Class so you can get fun ideas, tips, and exclusive FREE items only for subscribers sent straight to your email. 

Thank you so much for coming by and I hope you love all of the new resources!

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

How to Make Writing Fun for 1st Graders

So you want to know how to make writing fun for 1st graders? I have the answers! :)

Writing should be engaging and exciting and a way for a child to express their creativity and personality... but what if your first grade students just don't enjoy writing?

There are plenty of ways to make it fun for your reluctant writers!

1. Make writing into a craft activity!

I absolutely love writing crafts! I have them for pretty much every theme, holiday, and topic you can imagine. 

Kids write a story, color the picture, cut it out, then glue it onto a piece of bright construction paper to make an instant, easy craft! 

First grade writing activities that are so fun and NO PREP!


You read that correctly... Only 4 steps!


They can write as much or as little as they want then cut it out and it's such great writing practice.

Making writing fun elementary tips and ideas


As you can see above, there is the main page that is connected to a picture. It's all ONE piece, which makes it extremely easy for cutting out that even kindergarten students can do. Then, there are also additional pages if they have more to say! 

Because the page attached to the picture they color only has 4 lines and because the image is so huge, it looks really inviting to kids... and, more importantly, doable, whereas a sheet of blank lines can look really daunting.

The picture can inspire them to write as well as make it simply look more fun.

If you have some 1st graders who love to write, I actually have each craft in 3 difficulty levels: a 4 lines version (like the one above), a 5 lines version, and a 6 lines version so that you can pick "harder" versions if you have kids who like to write a lot! The picture gets smaller as the amount of lines increases.


Super cute ideas for differentiating writing in first grade


You can differentiate it even further by how many pages they can write for the same craft... which is limitless, really! 

They simply glue the pages together by putting a line of glue in the space where the title normally is and placing pages on top of each other. I very much prefer glue sticks for this! These are the glue sticks I love to use. In my experience, they roll on soo easily across that title area and stick on super easily.  It makes the crafts beautiful!

The "extra" pages get glued to the back of the main page (the picture/lines combination page) so that the pages go in order.

Anyway, I love when kids can add pages to it because then it becomes a story they can flip through and it simply looks way cooler too!

Here are THREE fun, FREE writing crafts you can do right away! I hope you love them :)

Fun writing first grade how to be a friend activity

This free pack includes How to Be a Friend, If I Met an Alien, and The Best Field Trip so you have a procedural writing (how to), a fun creative writing prompt, and a narrative for the best field trip they ever went on. You could also use the best field trip for them to write creatively to describe what would be the best field trip ever.

If you love them and decide that you want more of them, you can browse all the writing crafts I have available if you want to check them out! :)

These make such a great bulletin board as well!!! AND IT'S SO EASY. All you do is print them and hand them to kids and all they do is write, color, cut, and glue for an instant new bulletin board display!

If finding the time to keep your bulletin boards up to date and cute is a struggle for you at all, these will save you SO much time. Not having to think of a new project, prep that project, actually do the project, and then arrange it all cutely on your board... so nice to not have to do all that! 

Having these for each holiday / theme going on makes it so easy to switch out bulletin boards quickly and easily. Plus the kids LOVE to see their writing and finished work and they look so beautiful on your board, especially if they add the "extra" pages that can be flipped. People who walk by will be thinking, "How did they have the time to do another cute writing project??" 

I love that it makes kids proud of their work, too, and it's also a great display for parents to see. Parents love to be able to see their child's work and read it and kids are proud to point it out. I could go on and on about this, but making kids PROUD of their writing & excited to show it off really helps it be fun too! You could even encourage teachers who walk down your hall to compliment kids / your class on their writing so they know people who walk by are looking at it and admiring it. Ask a teacher friend to come in your room and say, "Oh my goodness Miss Giraffe, your students' writing out there about If I Lived in an Igloo is SO fantastic! What great writers you have in here!" Seems silly, but your kids will be beaming. Beaming, I tell you. And it takes 5 seconds. A compliment seems to mean 1000x more to them when it's from a random adult outside your room.


A few bulletin board hacks for you since we're on the topic:

- Since these crafts will always be the exact same size (the size of construction paper), you can space them out perfectly ONE TIME. Then, each time you switch out the bulletin board, take down 1 craft at a time and immediately replace it in the exact same spot with the new one. So you only ever have to line them up perfectly one time. Or at least until you want to change the background color :) Isn't that amazing though?! Extra tip: Draw the tiniest little line around the 2 top corners of each one with a pencil (ever so lightly so you can't see it) so you know exactly where each one was.

- If you do the tip above, you'll also have the same amount of space for the title of your display each time. Make your own letters so you can pick the exact size! I wrote this really easy tutorial for how to make your own bulletin board letters so you can always have the exact title you need. :)

- This is how I organize my actual borders - if you have a lot of them, you may find it helpful. I recommend picking one in a color that goes with A LOT of potential displays so that you don't have to change it often... or ever. Same with the background! Pick a color you can leave up all year if you're fine with that! :)

2. Inspire your young writers with a lot of pictures!

If you want your kids to write, you have to inspire them! One of the easiest ways a child begins to dislike writing and becomes a reluctant writer is that they feel frustrated with not knowing what to write about.

So put out writing charts wherever they write!

Writing Charts for first grade are so wonderful to help kids write words they may not know how to spell


I have THEMED writing charts that I love for writing centers. They have topics like ocean animals, farm animals, construction, zoo animals, bugs, pets, beach words, and so on. 

They make it really easy to find a topic and start writing!



I also have them for each alphabet letter sound. Each letter has its own page. 

If you scroll down in my Teaching Letter Sounds post, you can see some of them in the picture I showed. 

Those are my Alphabet Writing Charts set so if you're reading this for help with a kindergarten student that is learning a letter a week, then those are great!

If you're reading this for first graders, then I'd recommend the Phonics Sounds Writing Charts instead. Each chart has pictures and words for the phonics sound(s) you're learning that week so they can write using those.


One fun thing that you can do is put the writing charts in sheet protectors in a binder then prop up the binder like my example above. 

What I love about this set up is that you can display the chart on whatever theme / letter / phonics sound you're focusing on that week, but kids can also FLIP through the pages in the binder if they want to find words they've done before or for more inspiration.

I absolutely love these because you can put out a fun themed writing chart about farm animals, for example, and now they have a fun topic to write about. The fun pictures can inspire them to know what to write about and it really helps their writing skills and confidence to have words already there for them.

3. Remove any frustrations for reluctant writers

On that note, besides not knowing what to write about, another common writing frustration for 1st graders can be not knowing how to spell words they want to write. 

Having the words written for them on those charts alleviates that barrier.

You can also have picture word cards in the area that they write so they can pick them up, look at them, and write them. 

You could also simply have them pick up 2 or 3 and write a story about them. I have a ton of picture word cards (I show a lot of examples in my How to Organize Phonics Pocket Chart Centers post) so those are easy for kids to look at and know how to spell.

As many places as you can have words for them to copy with pictures, the better!


You can even put the words for them to use right on their writing paper!

Awesome support for reluctant writers in first grade or kindergarten! You could even use these in 2nd!


This picture is from the post where I showed my Phonics Sound Binders using my Long I binder as an example so that's why it's in a binder if you're wondering. :)

These 2 pages above are a great example of the 2 styles of writing sheets I put words down the side of.

If you look closely, you'll notice both sheets have the exact same words - all words with the long I with a silent E sound. One has a picture box with writing lines. The one on the left side has 3 separate picture boxes and writing lines areas so that they only have to come up with 3 individual sentences, rather than a whole story. 

This is an easy way to easily differentiate and not overwhelm your struggling writers. The more you can support your beginning writers, the better. Having the words literally on their paper is so, so helpful.

The words down the side give them topics to write about, as well as lets them know exactly how to spell the words. They can simply focus on writing, rather than, "How do you spell...?" :)

I have these pages in each No Prep Phonics Pack for each sound (scroll this page slightly if you want to see all the sounds I have) and then I also bundled them separately in my Phonics Pictures Writing Helper Pages pack

I waayyy recommend the phonics packs instead if you want those pages, though. There are a ton of fun activities in each pack. Even if you think you only want the writing pages, I encourage you to try 1 phonics pack instead, for whatever sound you're doing, and try them out first. Because if you end up wanting the phonics packs later, then you'll already have all those pages for each sound.

You can see a lot of pictures of the no prep worksheets / activities in those packs in my Digraphs Teaching Ideas post, the EW UE UI activities post, and also the Short A activities post. They show other fun activities for those sounds but all 3 of those show a decent amount of the worksheets in those packs. The activities are consistent from pack to pack (so you only ever teach how to do them once) so it'll give you a great idea of what they're like :) 

Anyway! The point I am trying to make is: provide LOTS of pictures of words that are spelled for them to support them in their writing.

Another quick note - 
Make sure they are comfortable while they're writing. You want them to be able to write in a comfy spot, even if it's just at their desk. They need space and quiet. You could allow flexible seating for them to choose a spot where they are comfortable (if you're able to) and allow them to freely write. Don't correct how they're holding their pencil while they're trying to write creatively. Yes, they're still learning how to write at this age but you want them to focus on only one hard task at a time. If they are left handed especially, let them hold their paper however they want to. You want their focus to be as much on their writing as possible and limit any distractions, frustrations, and discomforts in order to make writing as fun as possible.

4. Let your students write about topics they're interested in!

If a student loves space, let them write about space! The writing crafts I mentioned above are AWESOME to throw into a writing center so students can choose the topic they write about.

Space writing prompts first grade kids love!


I show more of these Space Writing Crafts in my giant New to First Grade? Everything You Need to Know! post that explains how you can incorporate science into your day by integrating it into other subjects... like writing :)

That post also shows a few more writing crafts for back to school and classroom management if you want to see more of them. I also have posts that show some of the crafts I like for each month. You can see links to them under the "Monthly Writing Crafts and Ideas" section of this page:

Those are showing mostly seasonal ones but I have them for a ton of different creative writing, how to writing, narrative writing, and opinion writing topics too! 

I recommend printing out a bunch of random ones and putting them in a place where kids can choose the one they want. This makes an AWESOME fast finisher bin that kids who finish their work early can grab and do a fun little project. Just the fact that they can pick the one they do makes it all of a sudden seem like a reward. I'm sure you've noticed that too! :) Even if it's a math center they had to do at one point... now, if they get to choose it, it's all of a sudden a treat. Such a fascinating first grade phenomenon. And kindergarten phenomenon. And, if I'm being honest, adult phenomenon lol :) Yes, it works on us too!


I hope this post gave you some fun ways for how to make writing fun for 1st graders in your class or for your first grader at home. These ideas really apply to any elementary aged child, so no matter what age student you're trying to encourage to be a good writer that enjoys writing, I think these ideas will help! The main focus is to keep it as fun and silly and creative as possible and to limit any frustrations getting in the way of those 3 things. Happy writing! :) 


Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Teaching Singular and Plural Nouns

Teaching plural and singular nouns to kindergarten and first graders seems easy at first... until you realize there's no such thing as foxs and teeth are not tooths. 

It's actually fun to teach, I think, because you get to realize how silly English can be when a kid asks you why you can have cows but not sheeps. And your answer is probably, "That is a great question." :)

Irregular plural nouns can make it tricky BUT most words do follow some pretty basic rules so using pictures to give a lot of examples of each rule is my favorite way that I recommend to teach plural nouns.

Plural Nouns Activities


Start with simply introducing a word that you have a picture card of (for example: cats). Then, ask them if you would say, "I have three cat." They'll giggle and say nooo, so you'll ask them what you say then. "Cats!" Repeat, "Ohh catSSSS. What did we add to the end of cat?" and hopefully they say "S!" If not, reinforce the "s" sound really quick. Introduce the "cats" card. Have them look at the 2 cards. Ask them how the words are different. They'll point out the S and you can explain how, with many words, all you have to do is add an S to the end to make it mean more than one. Tell them that is called plural. Plural is when there is more than one of something.

Repeat this with a few more words. Look at the picture above for examples. 

"If you can read dog, you can read dogs!" so now you know 2 words.

Give a handful (10-15) of singular and plural versions of simple nouns and have them match them. As they match each one, have them say it: "Car... cars"

You can also play a fun matching game where you put all the cards upside down in a grid pattern (if you used 12 cards, do 4 x 3 for example). Then take turns flipping them over to make a singular/plural match. If they make a match, they keep the cards. If they don't, they flip them back over and it's the next person's turn while they try to remember where the matches are.

That's super fun practice!

Make sure to use the word "singular" to describe only one while learning this lesson so they learn both vocabulary words. I also recommend using the headers I show above while sorting/matching so they get used to the new terminology. 

That's also a really quick sort they can do to review those terms. Give them the headers and have them sort pictures as to whether the picture noun is singular or plural.

The next lesson is to introduce words that become plural by adding -es to the end of it. 

Singular and Plural Nouns kindergarten


Let them know that sometimes you add -es to a word to make it mean more than one.

I recommend starting with foxes and boxes since those are probably words they can spell, so they can see the "es" on the end of it. Break "es" into short e + ssss so they hear essss. Say "lunches" and ask if they hear "lunchs" or "lunchES" - repeat with benchES. CouchES. Let them hear the "es" and the difference to "cats." Say "CatES" and ask them if that sounds correct. Be silly, they'll love it :) 

Now, have them sort the PLURAL cards as to whether they have "s" at the end or "es." I recommend giving them the words with the pluralizing suffix already on it.

Singular and Plural Nouns Activities


Although you can make it more difficult (or differentiate for more advanced students) by giving them the singular cards and have them decide if they think it's -s or -es like this:

Singular and Plural Nouns for Kids


That's pretty tricky! This is a great assessment, though, if you want to see whether they understand the rule.

They should know the rule where, typically, if a word ends in X, S, SH, CH... you add -es to make it plural.

Practice this a lot before moving on. This is possibly several lessons and rounds of practice before you move on to -ies words.

You can also give them a lot of support by giving them both versions of the card so they can properly sort it but also self-check it. This makes it a much more independent activity (since they can verify if they are correct) while also providing a lot of support.

Plural Nouns s and es


There are so many ways you can do it - it really depends on where you feel your learner is.

I like this approach because they can see exactly how the word changed.


Words that end in Y add IES

Once they've solidified -s and -es words, start with words that end in y!

There are several smaller lessons for this rule. I recommend starting with simple 2 syllable words that end in y: bunny, puppy, cherry, candy.

Ask what you have if you have more than 1 puppy... puppies!
What do you have if you have more than 1 cherry? Cherries!

Have them hear the IES sound at the end of the word & tell them it's spelled -ies.

Do another match to show how the y turns into -ies at the end of the word.

Plural nouns y to ies


I recommend ONLY using words that make the long E -ies sound at first to keep it simple for younger students. Skip the long i -ies words for now.

For example: candies, bunnies... NOT fries, flies. Not yet at least. :) More on that later!

Now that they have learned the 3 plural endings to words, I recommend doing a sort of TWO of them. You can do 3 if you really want to, but sorting -es and -ies is a great lesson.

Plural nouns y to ies - check this out! Fun activities, ideas, and how to teach the rules for this grammar concept to kids as young as kindergarten and first grade



Then, you can sort all 3 that you've learned!

Plural nouns s es ies


You can do this by giving them the already plural version of words (cats, buses, bunnies) for them to sort by the word's ending OR you can give them the singular version of the word (cat, bus, bunny) and have them decide how to make it plural.

You could also do it with the plural words first then later without to assess/practice more.

Having the word already be plural (buses) definitely gives a lot more support but it is still great practice, especially when first learning these rules. 

Important Note: The picture above shows long I -ies words (example: flies). I still would only include -ies words with the long e sound (skip words like flies) for this sort at this point.

You can also make this sort easier by giving both versions of each word like we did for the -s -es word sort:

Activities for singular and plural nouns


This is my favorite way to do the sorts because they can see both ways and how the word changes. It's a great visual representation of what they're actually doing when they add a plural ending. 


Once they've really internalized those 3 concepts (add S for most words, add -ES if the word ends in S X CH SH, and replace the Y with IES if it ends in Y)... NOW is when I would introduce long E -ies words. 


Long E -ies Words

These are words like fly and fry that turn into flies and fries.

Plural nouns with ies


When introducing dropping Y to add IES words, you only did Long E sounds. Now you can include words where IE makes the long I sound.

I recommend a simple sort like this to show them how Y can say eeee or I & when they change it to IES, it follows what the Y did.

Quick note - if you already learned the 3 Sounds of Y, then you could include them all from the beginning. If you need help teaching that skill, I have a lot of Sounds of Y resources! I have this awesome set of picture cards so you have a lot examples. I also have a HUGE pack of worksheets and no prep activity pages all focusing on Vowel Sounds of Y if you need to introduce and practice it. If you've already learned it and just need a super quick review, I have this free little worksheet to practice Sounds of Y. I prefer using word cards if you haven't already explicitly taught it. 

Plural nouns are usually taught before knowing those phonics skills, though, so that's why I think the Long I -ies words should be saved for well after you've learned the foundation skills for singular/plural nouns. It's just too confusing to do them both at the time time, I feel.

Same with how you're probably teaching this skill way before learning the IE sound that -ies uses. If you need help with that skill, I have a giant IGH and IE No Prep Pack as well as IGH and IE picture cards and IGH IE Clip Cards! I *love* phonics so I have fun stuff for every sound honestly. If I have something for one sound, I probably have it for all of them :) 

I don't recommend doing all of those vowel sounds of Y and IE activities with this. I'm simply pointing out how those are sounds they'll learn later and probably don't know yet. Eventually they'll learn how there are both long E and long I sounds for Y and IE. 

All they need to know right now is how Y can say eeee or I and the IES will say whatever the Y did.

For now, I'd simply tell them how Y can say E or I & that, in both cases, they drop the Y and add -IES to make it plural.


ADVANCED!

This is a somewhat advanced rule. It's helpful though. If you're teaching kindergarten, I'd probably skip this lesson entirely.

You don't always drop the Y to add -IES. Only if the Y is after a consonant.

Plural nouns ending in Y rules to add IES or S to a word


If the Y has a vowel right before it, you simply add an S.

Again, this is a pretty advanced rule but I wanted to include it for the sake of being thorough.




There are a lot more random rules!

Words that end in E add S

Another time you simply add S is when the word already ends in E. So, technically, the words does end in -ES but you only added -S to the word to make it plural.

For example, cake becomes cakes. It technically ends in es but adding an S is what made it plural.

Once you're ready to get a bit more complicated, you can show them how sometimes there is ALREADY an e at the end of a word, so all you do is add an s! 

Singular vs plural nouns activities and awesome explanation of the rules


For example, above, "cake" becomes "cakes" not "cakees" which they will think is funny if you say cake-es :)

If you haven't learned long vowel CVCe words, then I would wait until then and bring this out then. By then, it'll seem really easy to them and can be a fun review. Plus you'll have all these cards for learning long vowels!

It's not just CVCe words, though. If you notice in the picture above, words like "apple" also apply to this rule.


Plural F to VES

Another random seeming rule is how words that end in F often drop the F and add VES.

Plural nouns f to ves rule


This is another skill you can choose to do now or address later or if it comes up. I wouldn't overwhelm a child with all of these rules at once unless they're an older student and you want to make a quick list of all the possible rules.

I like learning to be organic so while you're teaching -s -es -ies... if they happen to come upon wolf and you need to explain why it's not wolfs, then you could do this as a quick 10-15 minute activity to explain this rule.


and then there are the totally, completely...

Irregular Plural Nouns

Nouns that don't follow the rules at all! :) They enjoy finding these!

Irregular plural nouns activities and ideas that are so fun!



I have a lot of games I like for practicing these words! 

I recommend bringing the "Singular" and "Plural" headers out again and have them simply place the singular version of the word and plural version of the word side by side like they did when you introduced -s -es and -ies. 

Tooth & teeth. Person & people. Woman & women.

This is a great lesson to play the matching game I talked about earlier where you flip all the cards over and try to make matches. The pictures are obviously a huge help, but make sure they're saying both "ox" and "oxen" when they make a match.

I also include a "Same" header so you could put that at the top and use it as a column where words stay the same (such as fish, sheep, deer). This is a fun column you could throw into any sort (-s and Same... -es and Same) to teach the concept of how some words stay the same.

Irregular plural nouns are simply ones they have to memorize. You can point them out when you come across them in conversations naturally. This is another easy way to make the concept of plural nouns silly and fun. Call mice meeses and deer deeries and let them correct you :)

I hope you found this post helpful!


If you want these picture cards I am using as examples, they are here:

All of the cards you see in this post are from that pack. It includes A LOT of cards and a lot of sorts with the headers already made for you. You can use these to simply introduce the concept, use them to play games, have kids sort them, have kids write them... I have heard of so many different ways people use my grammar and phonics pocket chart centers so it's really up to you! 

I also show more ideas for plural nouns in my Prefixes and Suffixes Teaching Ideas blog post including my plural nouns puzzles and posters if you want to explore this topic more :)


I am very excited that I have been posting a blog post every week this summer, starting at the beginning of July. I absolutely love sharing ideas with you and it has been a fun challenge! It has definitely been a challenge but one that I have enjoyed.

If you want to read my most recent posts... So far this summer I have posted:

I also have A TON of blog posts where I share my favorite ideas that you can find organized here:


Thank you for stopping by! I appreciate you coming to my little corner of the internet for a bit and hope you come back again soon! :)

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Long Vowel Games for First Grade and Kindergarten

Long vowel games for first grade and kindergarten that make reading SO much fun!

Having engaging activities kids can play in order to learn and solidify their phonics skills make reading so much fun... but also teaching reading so much more fun!

If you are looking for ideas for long vowels with silent E, this post is for you. :) I have A LOT of pictures to share so be sure to scroll through!

Long Vowel Games that are so fun to practice reading words with silent e!


For these activities, kids take the 2 dice and a game board to play. They can play independently or with a partner. There are 5 versions of the game board for each long vowel (a, i, o, and u).

They take the 2 dice and roll them to make a CVCe word!

When they read the dice to figure out the word they rolled, they get to COVER that picture once on their board.

Then, it's their partner's turn to roll! Their partner rolls and covers the word they roll on their own, different board.

Whoever covers all their pictures first wins! OR whoever makes 1 full line first wins - however you want to do it! Easy differentiation built right in! If they are playing by themselves then they win when they cover their entire board. :) 

If you're playing this with your child at home, I recommend getting a board for yourself and playing. It's just like if you were playing a board game with them and most kids love a little competition and will love it if you play it with them :) 

You can use any small object to cover the picture. I personally love math cubes because they're a great size and heavy enough to stay on the page.

Another option is to have them COLOR the picture they roll!

Long vowel activities for first grade and kindergarten where kids roll the words with silent e to build and read! Such fun pictures to color while they play!


(If you spell it "colour" then, no worries, I also included a version with "UK Spelling" for you if you want these for your class)

I made all of the boards come in both a COLOR and in a COVER version so you have a lot of options!

Each vowel a, i, o, u has 5 boards with 20 pictures AND 5 boards with 12 pictures so you can also make this game much easier for beginning readers.



See how the activity looks so similar but is a much easier level? This makes it so easy to differentiate in the classroom where your students won't even notice that they have an easier level. 

If you're using these at home with your child, I'd start with these easy 12 word ones as you're learning each vowel. THEN, when you go through each long vowel again for review later, as they've built more skills and learned all of the CVCe families, pull out the 20 words boards for a challenge!

If any of your students are ready for the challenge boards, though, go for it!

I made them for vowels a, i, o, and u. I didn't make e because I don't know anyone that really teaches that sound explicitly. There aren't many words with the long E silent E sound that kids know and even fewer that have illustrative pictures so I typically skip it in my packs since it's not really taught. Or at least in my opinion. :)

So I showed you Long I! Let's look at the other vowels!

Long vowel silent E games that are such fun printable activities where kids roll, build, and read words to cover their pictures to win!


One thing I love most about these is that they focus on WORD FAMILIES so, as they play and keep rolling, they really start to memorize those chunks...

Which is AMAZING! You may remember I talked about this in my Short Vowels Word Family Rolls version of this post where I showed the short vowels version of these. Teaching sounds in word families really helps kids master the sounds faster, in my opinion, and makes it so much more automatic. I recommend trying it, especially if you have any struggling readers in your class or if you're teaching littles in general. :) 

Long a activities for reading vowel word families in a super fun and engaging way! Check these out!


See how, in the picture above this text, the dice say "wave"? You can also see another beginning sound letter is C. So they can also spell cave. You can also see "came" and that the dice could also roll "wame" which is obviously not a word. This is a GREAT thing and awesome practice for an entirely different and important reading skill - determining if a word is a real word or not.

Even though "wame" is not a word (or at least not one that is used where I am), they still have to blend it to read it. That's still blending practice and practicing sorting whether a word is a real word or not. 

If you want to extend the practice of this particular skill, you could have them fold a piece of copy paper in half then unfold it. This will create a line down the center of the paper. Have them write "Real" on the left side and "Not Real" on the right side of the paper. As they roll, have them sort and write the words. I recommend not having a writing component to this activity to keep it fun and light, but you do have that option if that's a skill you're working on specifically!

I love having these for Long O and U because those sounds, for some reason, don't seem to register as being as much fun as Long A and Long I seem to.

Long u activities and games to practice this tricky silent e sound! Fun picture support while kids roll and read words with this challenging phonics skill!


So it's nice to have these to be able to pull out and make O and U fun! I mean, how adorable is that mule? :) 


Okay, so now that you've practice the 4 sets of word families for each vowel... it's time for a challenge! Review what you've learned by adding ANOTHER piece. 

This set has 3 dice! AND practices the 4 long vowels at once!



Instead of focusing on word families with 2 dice, this set reviews ALL of the 4 long vowels you've practiced and learned.

See how you can see hive & gate in the picture above this text? This provides so much fun review.

This set has been a best seller in my TpT for years. It's a lot of fun and makes a lot of words! It does make a lot of non-words, too, so I do recommend doing the word family ones first. You can jump straight to this one, though, if you've already taught the long vowels. A lot of people have! :) 

It also comes in color and cover versions. This one has 4 easier level (12 pictures) and 3 harder level (20 pictures) game boards for easy differentiation!

Just like the word family rolls I've shown you, it also comes with teacher directions AND student friendly directions so you can make this independent during centers and to simply have a visual!

This is a great activity to do to consolidate their learning! It really helps you see if they mix up e/i (common) and little things like that. :) 

I love long vowels because they can read SO many words once they know both short and long sounds!


If you want ALL of the fun activities I showed in this post plus more, I JUST created this big bundle of them!

They are ALL also included in the even bigger Phonics Word Rolls MEGA BUNDLE as well as the Long Vowels ULTIMATE BUNDLE if you're looking for a ton of activities!

I also have each vowel available separately if you want to try out just Long A, for example, and see how your child/students like it, you can do that :) 
&
&
& of course:

as well as the review CVCe center:

Thank you so much for making it all the way to the end of this post! I hope you found some fun ideas!

I have A TON of long vowels activities. I show a lot of the pages from my Long I no prep worksheets pack and how you can turn phonics worksheets (for any sound) into reusable centers in this post if you feel like looking around some more! :) 

I also have a lot of other phonics posts where I try to share a lot of teaching ideas. For example:

You can also see an organized list of my posts by category here:

I hope you find some ideas you love! You can also find all my social media on the right side of this page if you want to follow along for more! :) Thanks so much!

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Teaching Letter Sounds to Kindergarten and First Grade Kids

Teaching letter sounds to kindergarten and first grade kids is such a fun topic! You can even introduce it to preschoolers and they "get it" because it's something that's all around them. :)

Kids love it because alphabet letters are everywhere and, most importantly, once they have letter and sound recognition - they can start to READ! So exciting!

Teaching Letter Sounds 

I am going to share my favorite ideas for teaching beginning sounds with you and how you can make it so fun and engaging, whether you're teaching your own child at home or to a classroom full of students.

Teaching Letter Sound Correspondence

The first thing you're going to do is simply to tell your child how each letter makes its own sound.

Pick the first letter you're going to learn and tell them its sound. I love the idea of starting with either A or a sound with a very obvious sound like T or C. 

Letter C Activities for Kindergarten perfect for teaching letter sounds and recognition in fun ways

If you teach your alphabet letters in order, then A is a perfectly fine example. Apple, alligator, animal, am, at. Stretch it out when you say the "a" sound at the beginning so you're emphasizing the beginning sound.

In this example, I used C because the sound is harsh so it is really emphasizing the initial sound when saying the word. Cow, car, cat, cake. Hear how obvious that first sound is?

Go through each picture word card together while looking at the picture and saying the word for them, then hand them the card to look at. This is such a great way to introduce any letter.

Then, you can come up with words for that sound together and notice them during the day. For C, they may come up with K words and you can simply say how C and K make the same sound so now they already know 2 letter sounds! :)

Once they've learned a few letters, you can do a sort of 2 sounds. Have them sort the pictures as to whether the word starts with C or P. For example, the P side may look like this: 

Letter P activities for preschool or kindergarten that are awesome alphabet picture cards with fun words that kids love to "read" and sort. There are so many games you can play with these!

Put the header for "Starts with P" and the header for "Starts with C" on a table. Have them put the correct pictures under each header.

Such a quick and easy activity! Encourage them to also emphasize the first sound when saying the word. P-opcorn, p-enguin, p-encil. I also love the letter P because of how much it POPS when you say it :)

There are a lot of ways you can match this to the level of your child/class.

A quick way to differentiate is whether you leave the word on the bottom of the card (for support) or if you cut it off. I always print/make 2 sets: one with words and ones where I've clipped them off.

Here are some example levels of ways you can use these for SORTS while teaching a "focus letter" (the alphabet letter you're focusing on at the time):

- Super easy sort: With the words still attached, take a handful of the cards with your focus letter and random cards from other letters and do a "C" and "not C" sort (for this & any levels below, make it harder by simply cutting the words off the bottom)

- Another super easy one: 2 letters at a time - take a letter you've already learned (for example: T) and have them sort if the card is a M word or T word

- Slightly harder: 2 letters at a time - using focus sound (M) and a sound you've never learned before

- A little harder: 3 sounds at once (adjust difficulty by which letters you choose) so they sort words starting with M, P, or R for example, under the correct "Starts with" header

- Hard: Sorting 4 sounds at once. If you're sorting this many, I recommend doing it in a pocket chart or on the floor so they can spread out.

Alphabet sorting activities kids love because the pictures are so fun and are words they actually know

If you have really advanced students (be sure to read my How to Keep Gifted Kids Engaged and Learning Post if you do!), then here are some ways to make it challenging for them while still having them practice the same content as the rest of your class...

For all the word cards for your focus letter, have them:

- Have them put all the words from a particular letter in alphabetical order (explain how you start on the 2nd letter and sing the alphabet to figure out which letter comes next... if two words have the same 2nd letter, you look at the 3rd letter and sing the alphabet to figure out which comes next - this is a pretty advanced skill but an advanced student can pick it up quickly if you explain it well)

- Have them sort the words by how many syllables they have (teach them how to clap the word if you haven't taught syllables yet - advanced kids will pick that up super quick even if you haven't learned it)

- Have them sort them by the number of letters in the word and put in piles by how many

There are so many ways to differentiate when learning alphabet letters... or anything, really! If you read my articles, you know I love finding 20 levels of the same activity - I consider it a challenge... and find it fun. :)


You can also use these cards for easier activities!

If you have magnet letters, you can set out some cards that start with different letters (and have the words clipped off the bottom... or not) and have them put the letter the picture starts with on top of the picture. Only do a few at a time, as many as they can handle without feeling overwhelmed and keeping it fun.

You can also have them build the entire word with alphabet magnets next to the card. That's fun and you can say each letter of the word with them after if you want, or have them tell them to you as a review. It's great alphabet practice since they have to look at each letter in the word and find the magnet for it. It also reinforces the idea that words are made up of individual letters.


Another fun game I like is to pick 2 easy words from each letter from about 8 letters. Since you have 2 cards that each start with the same letter, you'll have 16 cards total. Arrange them upside down in a 4 x 4 grid. Take turns flipping over 2 at a time - if they make the same sound at the beginning, you get to keep them!

Make this game easier/harder by how many cards you put down in a grid. Also by whether or not you keep the word at the bottom or cut if off. You may think it's giving the answer to keep the word on the bottom but it's still awesome for them to see the letter and associate it with the sound, so as long as they're saying the word out loud, it is still awesome practice. Plus, it gives them picture support and confidence if they need a little.

I have these cards for the entire alphabet. You can grab them here if you want them: Alphabet Cards Beginning Sounds Pocket Chart Centers

For even more ideas for how to use them, you can check out my Short A Activities post where I showed a lot of the ways I use the Short A cards! It has a lot of fun teaching ideas including stamping words, building them in a pocket chart, writing them in sand, and a lot more ways that you could use for these too. :)


Recognizing Letters in the Environment

Constantly point out words you use and see in their environment! Learning is so much more meaningful when they see that what they're learning is all around them.

When you introduce D, for example, point it out everywhere!

"Oh, look at our cute dog! Hey, that's a D word. D-og, dog!"
"Hey, look at your book about dinosaurs. That starts with a D! D-inosaurs!"
"I wonder if your Uncle Dan knows his name starts with a D. D-an, Dan!"

(Say the sound D makes, not its letter name, when you say "D-og" to point out the sound. Try to say "duh" without the "uh" if you can. A sharp "duh" with as little "uh" as possible to emphasize the D sound. I hope that makes sense!)

"Time for dinner! Hey, that's a D word! D-inner, dinner!"

I know it sounds cheesy, but pointing it out everywhere really helps them to realize the alphabet is all around them and in all the words they already use.

Especially point it out if it's in their name! You can even ask that each time you introduce a new one - is it in your name? This is a great opportunity to have their first and last name written down somewhere and to reference it constantly. I recommend you write it somewhere in bold letters so it has nice letter formation for each letter and is easy to read. If they can look at it each time and decide if that letter is in their name, it's a great quick name recognition activity each time too!

Point out your focus letter if you see it on magazines, books, street signs, signs at the grocery store, signs of store names, names of T.V. shows if it displays the name, on movie covers, on food packaging. When they point it out to you in their environment, make a big deal about it and act enthusiastically excited that they found another one! :)

You can also do a little search around the house/classroom together to look for items.

If your child/class is competitive, you can also make it a race! Say, "Let's look for objects in the room that start with _" and see who can find it first. If you're a parent at home, run through the house and race them. Have them bring it to you if they find something and you do the same and make a pile together. You can do it multiple times too!

If you're in a classroom, they're racing each other while you stand at the front of the room. When someone brings something to you... say loudly, "Oooh, Jax found a Pencil. P-encil, pencil! What else can we find?" "Sophie found a Paper! P-aper, paper!" so they can hear you while you search. Then, when you're all done looking, have them sit on the carpet and go over all the objects you found, saying them out loud so they can hear each word. I also recommend writing the words down together so they can see them too.


Pick a Memory Word for Each Letter Sound

I love this trick! Have a specific word/picture that you ALWAYS use to remind them of a certain letter's sound. If it's always the same one, I personally believe that they're more likely to remember it.

"M says mmmm like monkey, remember?" or simply "mmmm monkey"
"C says "k" like cat" or simply "'k' cat"

For many kids, it's easier to say only the sound and word. Saying the letter name too may confuse them so if that's the case, do the 2nd options above.

Associating each letter with an animal is probably easiest. :) Pick animals they know/love. ONLY 1 for each and this is the one you'll always use when they need a quick reminder.

A = alligator
B = bunny, bird, beaver, bear (pick 1 & always use the same one)
C = cat (don't pick ones like crocodile, crab. You can but technically that's consonant blend CR and sounds slightly different. You want a vowel to be the 2nd letter to ensure it's not a blend.)
D = dog, dolphin, donkey, duck, deer

and so on! If you want me to make a list for all the letters, let me know below and I can add that for you :)

You could also grab that word card from the set above with that animal for that letter and have a master set of just those cards to have a visual reminder. You could even punch a hole in the corner and put them on a ring. You could also hang them in order on the wall in a line so they can "review" it each day. They can point to it and say: "'a' alligator, 'b' bear, 'c' cat" to say their alphabet each morning. OR you can have it hung up so, when they are trying to blend words together later and come across a letter they forgot the sound for, they can look up at the wall.

By the way, if you see letters between " symbols, I am referring to the sound for the letter instead of the letter name. I figured it was the easiest way to show that. If you think another way is easier, please let me know and I'll consider it because I realize it may look confusing. If I say A then I mean the letter name, pronounced AY. If I say "a" then I mean "aaah" (the sound you'd make if you were holding out your tongue at the dentist).


Have visuals everywhere

I recommend having visuals everywhere and referring to them often. My favorite to display are these Alphabet Charts for each letter!

Alphabet Charts for each letter for so much reading practice! These are so nice to have when teaching kids beginning sounds so you have a lot of great word and picture examples all on one sheet!

If you have a writing center, these are awesome to hang up each week. You could also print a couple and put them in sheet protectors on the table. If you have access to a laminator, that's another great option to make these last a long time if a lot of kids are going to be handling them.

I also recommend keeping one at your small groups table. They're just SO nice to have when teaching beginning sounds because you have a bunch of great picture examples all on one page.

If you're using these to homeschool, keep one wherever you teach.

You could also print it poster sized to display it huge - simply select "Poster" in your print settings when printing! Did you know you can do that?? It's an awesome trick for printing a single page poster sized! (For more printing tricks, check out my "Tech Tips for Teachers" post)


Another really fun idea for how to use these is to cut them up!

You can do this with any alphabet charts you already have too! Put them to use! :)

Cut a page of words into the little squares... or even have them cut them out if you think they can! That's great fine motor practice and they're straight lines so it's possible :) If they don't have scissors skills, though, I recommend doing it quickly yourself.

These come in black and white versions as well so you could have them color the pictures then cut them out to play with.

You could also use them for a sorting activity!

Pick 2 letters and have them cut the pictures out (or you do it - it would take me approximately 2 minutes to cut 2 pages of words out so it's quick for you to prep ahead of time for them if you want them to not see the "answers"). Then give them 2 pieces of paper to sort the words. Cut the tops off where it says "Letter C" and use those as headers. You could even open a notebook so it shows 2 pages at once and have them sort it on either side of the notebook ring. :) Such an easy and fun activity!

You could also cut them into strips of 4 words and use it as a bookmark in their notebook or books you're reading. :)

Or make them into drill strips. Randomly pull out a drill strip of 4 words and have them "read" each picture, pointing to each picture as they say the word. Congratulate them on what a great reader they are! Quick and easy way to pull out words with the letter you're learning, practice the sound, and build their reading confidence!

If you're using these in a classroom, I recommend laminating the sheets before cutting them out. Then you have drill strips you can use in small groups over and over. If you use it as a sorting activity, having them laminated is AWESOME because then you can put all the pieces into a bag for each letter (buy a box of small little sandwich size bags and write the letter on the front with a permanent marker for easy organization and storage). Then you can use these year after year!

If you have a bunch of laminated little word boxes cut out, you can also use them for reading practice in small groups, as well as games! There are so many games you could make up using them. (I recommend leaving the words at the bottom.)

You can also do a bazillion different sorts with them. C or R. C or T. C or M. C or J or M.... seemingly infinite! You can also pull them out again when you do vowels.... A or E. A or I. You name it!

The black and white versions can also make a great reading notebook activity like I said above, by having them color and sort words by the letter they start with on either page of a notebook and glue them down.

These make great little books they can take home and "read" all their words to their families!


Practicing Writing Words that Start with Each Letter

Speaking of books, I LOVE little books for phonics! I have them for all the different phonics sounds but I also made one for each alphabet letter!

Alphabet books to practice letter recognition and writing words that start with each! These are SO cute and perfect to use each week in kindergarten or preschool for kids to take home and "read" to their families!

This Alphabet Books Little Books Bundle has a little book for each week!

Each book has 10 words for each letter that kids can color then write on the lines. You can easily match it to their level by having them simply write the word once, write the word 3 times (once on each line), OR - to really challenge them - have them use the word in a sentence. If they're only ready to color each picture right now, have them do that. They can come back to it later. :)

Letter P book to practice words that begin with that sound in a super fun and visual way! Kids can write it on each line OR even use it in a sentence if you want to challenge them! Check out these super awesome alphabet ideas!

Here's a peek inside!

It uses primary writing lines to encourage good handwriting. All you do is print these and fold them to make them so they're quick and easy prep. I personally staple them too so they stay together because they are a lot of fun for kids to take home and read to their families... or anyone who comes in the room because they're so proud :)

If you're using these with your child at home, you could have them present them by reading them to the dog, cat, a stuffed animal, a family member.


Review Often with Learning Games

Once they've learned them all, you can play so many games to review! Matching games are one of my favorites, such as these Alphabet Beginning Sounds Puzzles!

Beginning Sounds Puzzles that make learning alphabet letter sounds so much fun for kids! They're great practice with highly engaging pictures to match to both lowercase and uppercase (it comes in 2 versions) so you can have a lot of review! Perfect for preschoolers, kindergarten literacy centers, homeschooling, or to supplement at home.

I LOVE puzzles for learning. If you read my post all about learning numbers and building number sense, you know what I mean... I use them constantly! I think at least 5 of the number activities I show in that article are puzzles... I love them! Kids love them so it just makes learning feel like a game.

They come in both a lowercase and uppercase version so you can play them both ways to maximize practice and knowledge. I chose the cutest pictures I could to make them highly engaging :) I try to use the same pictures throughout my resources for consistency. Consistency is SO helpful for emerging readers.


Beginning Sounds Worksheets

I recommend moving to worksheet based activities to have them practice what they've learned in a more independent seeming way. Activities that involve cutting and gluing down the correct answers are a great way to accomplish this. They'll still have pieces to manipulate but get to sort them into the correct locations so you can assess how well they're absorbing the skills.

If you want paper practice, these Beginning Sounds Worksheets are one of my favorites!

Beginning Sounds Worksheets Kindergarten or Preschool that are great review in these cute little picture sorts!


These are really simple, easy, and fun practice. A great way to assess as well!

Sorting by sound is actually a pretty important and sometimes difficult skill, so you may have to help them hear the sounds. This is such crucial knowledge to know if they're struggling with this, though! If they struggle with this doing this sort, you know you need to work more on hearing the sounds in a word without seeing letters. Have them close their eyes and listen to you say a word emphasizing the beginning sound. Ask them to tell you what sound they hear at the beginning. "What letter makes that sound?" This is a great listening activity to do regularly anyway. :)



If you really want to challenge your little learner, these Starts With or Ends With Worksheets are a fun challenge!

They start out with a worksheet page like this:

Beginning and Ending Sounds Activities where kids sort pictures! This is an amazing consolidation for the learning you've done on letters!


You say the first word with them ssssooooCK (stretch the word then say the CK abruptly). "Do you hear K at the beginning of this word? ssss-ock?" "No" "Or is it at the end of the word?" "sssssooooCK" "Yes!" so you put it on the "Ends with K" side.

Go through the rest of the pictures with them until all of the pictures are sorted. This is also a great independent consolidation activity for all the work you've done so far! You can also use it as an assessment to figure out whether they are truly hearing the sound in the word. Excellent practice either way!

Beginning and Ending Sounds Worksheets that are perfect consolidation activities to practice, review, and assess all the alphabet letter knowledge you've learned so far! I absolutely love these for independent work too. They're great for so many things and the fun pictures keep kids super engaged


They are awesome for figuring out if the word starts with P (pig) or ends with P (mop), for example. This is a great way to explain how you can find P at the end of words too and sets them up for beginning to read words.

Once they can hear the sounds in words and where they are, they can begin spelling words out. SO EXCITING.

I hope this has given you some fun ideas for teaching letter sounds that you can use with your child or your students! These activities can be used for preschoolers to kindergarten to reviewing in first grade and above. Because I offer a lot of picture support in the resources I create, these can be used for so many ages so if you have an older child at home or that you tutor, try these ideas with them too! Because I show a lot of pictures, you can also start these skills in early preschool too! I hope I gave ideas for reaching all of these levels but if you have any questions, please let me know so I can try to help make this more inclusive for all learners. :) Thank you so much for reading!



If you want ALL of the activities I showed you in this post, they're all in my Alphabet ULTIMATE BUNDLE which is absolutely packed with fun activities!

Every activity I've talked about here is in this bundle if you want all of them!



I have so many more fun ideas posts if you want to see more ideas! This page has them organized for you for super easy browsing:
Miss Giraffe Organized List of Blog Posts by Topic

A few of my most recent from this month are:
Short Vowel Word Family Games (these actually combine beginning sounds & reading!)
Fun CVC Word Family Games

I'd like to take another moment to thank you again for stopping by and reading! I appreciate you taking the time to visit! I absolutely love sharing teaching ideas and hope you found some great ones. Go to the top of this page and look on the right to find ways you can follow me on social media if you want to keep in touch. Also feel free to email me with any questions you have as well, I am happy to help! :)