Lesson plan

Pick Up the Phoneme!

Pick up the phoneme and practice! In this lesson, your students will practice their sense of sound-symbol relationship to develop solid spelling and reading skills.
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Listen to the phonemes in different words and work on your reading, writing, and spelling skills! In the lesson Pick Up the Phoneme, first graders and second graders are given the tools to better break up a word into its smallest components. They will practice identifying phonemes in different words as they work on different reading and writing skills. To wrap things up, students will practice another part of the writing process with a group spelling bee using the words in the lesson.

Students will be able to spell the words in their word sorts and correctly identify the phonemes within each word.

(5 minutes)
  • Tell students that their objective is to increase their phonemic awareness skills in order to become better readers and spellers.
  • Review some of the key terms pertaining to phonemic awareness, such as blends, or two or three consonant combinations that create a different consonant sound.
  • Ask students to take out the play or short story.
  • Inform students that they will be working with new word sorts and blends from the play.
(5 minutes)
  • Explain to your students that phonemes are the smallest units that make up words.
  • Direct their attention to sounds and blends which are found within the words of this play.
  • Have them try by shouting out some sounds, one at a time.
  • Create a word sort from words found in the play on the board.
  • Have students write them in their notebooks.
  • Explain to your students that you are going to call out a word from the play.
  • Tell students that when they hear the ring of your bell, they need to pick up the correct phonemes from the word you called out.
  • Instruct them to look through a group of index cards with a phoneme from the word sort written on each one.
  • Have the students write down the phonemes in their notebooks and spell the word.
(10 minutes)
  • Have students get into table teams.
  • Tell them that they will accumulate points for their team, with a point awarded for each correct phoneme, correct spelling of the word, and for providing a word that rhymes with the word.
  • Have students play a few rounds of the game with their groups.
  • Check for student understanding, and answer any questions that the students may have.
(10 minutes)
  • Ask students to study their words from the game, reviewing each word twice.
  • Ask them to practice finding words that rhyme with each word.
  • Have students provide the definition to any of the words from the game.
  • Enrichment: Have accelerated learners work together, and give them additional tasks, such as providing well-constructed sentences for each word. Instruct your students to search for synonyms and/or antonyms for the words.
  • Support: Give your students easier words with spelling and rhyming only so that they can focus on basic reading and writing skills.
  • Have your students create a spreadsheet or word document of their word sort with the word, phoneme, synonym, and definition.
(10 minutes)
  • Conduct a group spelling bee that consists of the words within your students' word banks. The scores that the students receive from the spelling bee will help you assess how well they met the objective of this lesson.
(5 minutes)
  • Invite the students to come together for a mock game show of “Pick Up the Phoneme.”
  • As the game show host, ask your students to play the phoneme game.
  • Add bonus words for additional points.

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