EL Support Lesson

Vowels Are Special

In this fun alphabet-focused lesson plan, students will learn all about vowels! With a special focus on the letter A, this is a great way to help your students learn all about short vowel sounds. Can be used as a stand-alone or support lesson for the **A-E-I-O-U** lesson plan.
This lesson can be used as a pre-lesson for the A-E-I-O-U lesson plan.
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This lesson can be used as a pre-lesson for the A-E-I-O-U lesson plan.

Students will be able to recognize that every word has a vowel in it.


Students will be able to identify vowels in CVC words using visual supports.

(2 minutes)
  • Gather the students together and say, "Today we are going to start our class by singing a new ABC song."
  • Play the Phonics Song 2 for the students.
  • Write up the five vowels on the board ("A," "E," "I," "O," "U") and say, "There are 26 letters in the alphabet. These five letters are special. They are called vowels. All words need at least one vowel in them."
(5 minutes)
  • Refer back to the vowels written on the board and say, "Vowels are special letters because they make more than one sound. Each letter makes a long sound, which sounds like its name, and a short sound."
  • Display the ABC Coloring Page and model how to find and color the vowels on the page.
  • Pass out a page to each student (using clipboards if possible so students can work on the rug) and have them color in the vowels.
  • Display the vocabulary cards for this lesson. Say, "Now we are going to look at some words with short vowels."
  • Ask students to help you identify each of the words in turn (using the pictures as clues) and saying the word aloud.
  • Model sounding out the letters in one of the words (with an emphasis on the vowel), e.g., "H-A-T. This spells hat. The 'a' is the vowel in this word."
(3 minutes)
  • Explain that now students will get to practice finding the vowels in each word with a partner.
  • Pair students together and pass out a set of the Vocabulary Cards to each pair.
  • As students are searching for vowels, direct their attention to the vowels on their ABC page for support.
  • Encourage students to try to sound out the word, using the picture for support.
(15 minutes)
  • Bring the pairs back to the group and go over each card with the class, making sure that all students are able to identify the vowels in each word.
  • Explain that now students will get to focus on the letter A. Ask students to say the short A sound with you, then model saying a few short A words, such as: apple, ant, or alligator. Write the letter A on the board and record ideas under it.
  • Ask students to share other A words with you. If time allows, have students practice using the A word in a short sentence.
  • Display the Beginning Reading: A Words worksheet and go over directions (trace the As, circle the As in each word, then color the pictures).
  • Pass out materials and send students to work independently.


  • Work with a small group of students to go over the target words and identify the vowels. Practice sounding out the CVC words, emphasizing the vowel in each word.


  • Have students come up with additional words containing short vowel sounds. Ask students to identify the vowels in each word.
(5 minutes)
  • Throughout the lesson, listen to students and assess if they are able to identify the vowels in each word.
  • Check that students are able to understand the difference between vowels and consonants by collecting their ABC coloring page to see if they were able to correctly identify the vowels.
(5 minutes)
  • Close the class by adding words to the A word list and having students come up and circle the vowels in each word.

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