“Beg, borrow, and steal,” a teacher told me when I was getting my education degree. We have so many things to teach our students, there is no way one teacher could have the perfect way to teach all things. So, we glean wisdom from our peers.
There are so many great ideas out there. I’ve chosen to make Fridays, Lesson Plan Day, and share an idea I’ve created or stolen (with all credit & permission to the creator). This idea is one of mine.
Lesson Plan Day, let it begin!
I wish, by doing this, we would all be sitting in a teacher’s lounge, or Starbucks, or – let’s be honest – Happy Hour, and get to share the best ideas we have, but blogging it will have to suffice.
Breaking Down Words
A few years ago, I worked as a reading interventionist. I worked with struggling readers in grades 1-5, but realized quickly the differences in both. For this post, I will focus on my intermediate (grades 3-5) readers. These were kids who had a great oral vocabulary. They knew all the pieces of words and how they should sound, but they didn’t want to take the time to sound them out. Kids this age are trying to make meaning of words and aren’t always comfortable decoding.
“What is this word?” I asked, pointing. It was contraption.
“Contrulazated?” one student answered, like it was a question.
“Contradeulating?’ another questioned.
This was when realized that these kids weren’t looking at entire words. Why would they? Words are huge! Words are scary! But they know pieces. They know how most prefixes and suffixes sound. While they may be unclear about vowel sounds, they know how to say un-, dis-, ing, -ed and other familiar parts of words.
I came up with a strategy, as you can see from the poster above. I’ve included snippets of each below to focus on.
Please understand, this strategy only comes from my personal experience as something that has worked with kids. I tried to do this with first graders (who could read well) the following year. It was interesting, they persisted in decoding each letter because they weren’t used to identifying word parts. Give it a try, if you want, let me know how it goes.