Chaining | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA G1:S2:C7:L36

Chaining

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Daily Learning Targets

  • Opening A: I can segment and blend CVC words with the phonemes (sounds) /w/, /sh/, /ī/, /f/, /l/, /ing/. (RF.1.2)
    • I can say a three-phoneme word and segment (break apart) into individual phonemes (sounds) in order.
    • I can blend three phonemes to form a spoken word.
    • I can identify the sound that corresponds to “sh” and “wh.”
  • Opening B: I can write the graphemes (letters) that match the phonemes (sounds) “wh,” “sh,” “y,” “f,” “l,” “i,” “n,” “g.” (RF.K.3, L.1.2a)
    • I can write the letter or letters for most of the consonant sounds I hear.
    • I can write the letter or letters for most of the short vowel sounds I hear.
    • I can look at each consonant and say its sound.
  • Work Time: I can read and spell VC and CVC words with the phonemes (sounds) /w/, /sh/, /e/, /n/, /d/, /s/, /l/, long /i/ (“y”), /m/, /b/, /e/, /p/, /g/, /r/, /ing/. (RF.1.3, L.1.2)
    • I can decode regularly spelled one-syllable words by mapping graphemes and phonemes.
    • I can use what I know about common spelling patterns to correctly spell words with those common patterns.
    • I can read words with an “-ing” ending.
    • I can use what I know about common spelling patterns to correctly spell words with those common patterns.

Ongoing Assessment

  • Observe students during work with whiteboards.
    • Determine whether they can blend CVC and CCVC short-vowel words using the patterns for the cycle.
    • Also determine whether they can spell CVC and CCVC words from memory.

Agenda

AgendaTeaching Notes

1. Opening (3–5 minutes)

A. Phonemic Blending and Segmentation: /w/, /sh/, /ī/, /f/, /l/, /ing/

B. Writing the Letter to Match the Sound: “wh,” “sh,” “y,” “f,” “l,” “i,” “n,” “g”

2. Work Time (10–15 minutes)

A. Chaining: Decoding /w/, /h/, /sh/, /y/, /i/, /n/, /g/, /k/, /m/, /e/, /d/, /c/, /r/, /f/, /p/

B. Chaining: Encoding /w/, /sh/, /e/, /n/, /d/, /s/, /l/, /ī/ (“y”), /m/, /b/, /e/, /p/, /g/, /r/, /ing/

3. Closing and Assessment (2 minutes)

A. Reflecting on Learning

4. Differentiated Small Group Instruction and Rotations (40 minutes)

  • Prepare:
    • Letter Formation chart with visuals
    • Snapshot Assessment (optional)
  • Gather Materials for differentiated small group instruction (see Differentiated Small Groups: Work with Teacher).

Vocabulary

Key: Lesson-Specific Vocabulary (L); Text-Specific Vocabulary (T)

  • blend, decode, digraph, proficient (L)

Materials

  • Letter Formation chart (for teacher reference)
  • Long "i" anchor chart
  • Whiteboards or sheet protectors with white cardboard inside (one per student or for partners)
  • Whiteboard markers (one per student)
  • Whiteboard erasers (or tissues, socks, etc.; one per student)
  • Movable letters (magnetic letters, Letter Cards in a pocket chart, or other letters that can be displayed and moved; one each for teacher modeling: "w," "s," "h," "e," "n," "d," "s," "l," "i," "m," "b," "e," "p," "g," "r," "g"; from Lesson 26)
  • Articulatory Gestures chart
  • Snapshot Assessment (optional; one per student)

Opening

OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Phonemic Blending and Segmentation: /w/, /sh/, /ī/, /f/, /l/, /ing/

  • (Suggested transition song, sung to the tune of “The More We Get Together”):

“Sit down and come together, together, together. Sit down and come together, together, right now. It’s time to make three sounds and blend them together. Let’s listen to each sound now, and blend them to make a word.”

  • Begin the Phonemic Blending and Segmentation instructional practice:

1. Teacher says: “We will make words using sounds that we know. Listen carefully while I do the first one.”

2. Teacher says the phonemes (sounds) in the first word—“why” (/w/ /ī/)—using the thumb-tapping technique.

3. Teacher says: “When I blend the sounds together, they make the word ‘why.’” Teacher models blending the phoneme to make a word.

4. Students repeat the thumb-tapping technique, pronouncing each phoneme: /w/ /ī/.

5. Students blend the word: “why.”

6. Repeat steps 1–4 with remaining words: “cry,” “fly,” and “flying.”

  • For students who have difficulty with the dexterity needed for the thumb task, encourage them to tap the thumb on the opposite hand.
  • Consider facing the board while modeling and looking over a shoulder at students so writing is modeled from left to right.
  • Consider facing the students when modeling how to skywrite and instructing them to mirror you.
  • Consider explaining that "-ing" is a morpheme. It cannot be divided and should be said as one sound.
  • Consonant clusters can be difficult to pronounce for some students. Have them feel how the mouth moves from one sound in the cluster to the next. Have students see this transition in a mirror.

B. Writing the Letter to Match the Sound: “wh,” “sh,” “y,” “f,” “l,” “i,” “n,” “g”

  • (Suggested transition song, sung to the tune of “The More We Get Together”):

“Now it’s time to match these sounds to their letters and write them. Now it’s time to match these sounds to their letters, let’s go!”

  • Begin the Writing the Letter to Match the Sound instructional practice:

1. Teacher says: “You will write the letters that match each sound you hear. These letters will help us write words!”

2. Teacher shows a picture of a question mark and says the word: “why.”

3. Teacher pronounces the phonemes (sounds): “/w//ī/.”

4. Students repeat: “/w/ long /ī/.”

5. Teacher repeats the phonemes, writing the grapheme (letter) for the first two phonemes as he or she says it and inviting students to repeat by skywriting (see Letter Formation chart for suggested formation of each letter). Teacher pauses before writing the grapheme “y” for the final sound (/ī/).

6. Teacher asks:

“What final sound do you hear?” (/ī/)

7. Teacher says: “That’s right, the final sound in this word is a long /i/. The letter ‘y’ is sly because it makes a long /i/ sound by acting like a vowel at the end of a CV or CCV word. Today we are going to learn to make the long /i/ sound when we write a sly ‘y’ at the end of a CV or CVV word.”

8. Teacher writes the “y” as he or she says it and invites students to repeat by skywriting (see Letter Formation chart for suggested formation of each letter).

9. Repeat steps 2–5 for the remaining words: “cry,” “fly,” and “flying.”

10. Teacher shows the /ī/ ("y") anchor chart. Teacher writes “why” on the anchor chart, underlining the “y” to indicate where the long /i/ sound in the word is heard.

11. Teacher says: “‘Why’ is a word that ends with the letter ‘y’ but makes the /ī/ sound that we learned today. We will continue to collect one syllable words where the ‘y’ makes the /ī/ sound and add them to the chart throughout the year.”

  • Consider pausing before the long /i/ phoneme that the letter “y” makes in each word to ask students if “y” is acting like a consonant or a vowel.
  • Consider asking students to name how they know the words “why” and “shy” will end with the long /i/ sound to encourage their word analysis skill development.
  • When teaching the “-ing” suffix, explain to students that the suffix makes one phoneme “sound.” Consider telling them it is added to action words (verbs) to show current movement.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Chaining: Decoding /w/, /sh/, /e/, /n/, /d/, /s/, /l/, /i/ ("y"), /m/, /b/, /e/, /p/, /g/, /r/, /ing/

  • (Suggested transition song, sung to the tune of “The More We Get Together”):

“Now it’s time to decode words using the letter sound connections; now it’s time to decode words; be careful, watch for a change.”

  • Distribute whiteboards, whiteboard markers, and whiteboard erasers.
  • Begin the decoding (reading) part of the Chaining instructional practice:

1. Teacher shows the word with movable letters: “my.”

2. Teacher points to each letter from left to right, making each sound and blending to pronounce the word: “my.”

3. Teacher says: “How do we know this word ends with /ī/?” (It is a sly “y” word when the “y” acts like a vowel.) “Right! And we remember that when a CV or CCV word ends in ‘-y,’ it makes the long /i/ sound.”

4. Students write the word on their whiteboards: “my.” Emphasize proper letter formation (see Letter Formation chart for suggested formation of each letter).

5. Students point to each letter from left to right, making each sound and blending to pronounce the word: “my.” Teacher removes the “m” and replaces it with a “wh.”

6. Teacher asks:

“How has the word stayed the same?” (“-y” is the same.)

“How has the word changed?” (We added a “wh” to the word.)

7. Students write “wh” in front of the “-y” to form the new word: “why.”

8. Teacher asks:

“What do we notice about the letters matching the sound /w/ in this word?” (Two letters are making the sound /w/.)

9. Teacher says: “Right! Today we are going to use the digraph ‘wh,’ which matches the sound /w/ at the beginning of some words.”

10. Students point to each letter from left to right, making each sound and blending to pronounce the word: “why.”

11. Repeat steps 5–8 with remaining words: “spy,” “sky,” “shy,” “fly,” “fry,” “cry,” “crying,” “frying,” “flying,” “spying,” “spend,” “mend,” “send,” “lend,” “bend,” “bending,” “mending.”

12. Teacher records the words then guides students to read the entire list of words (as a group and/or individual volunteers), asking them to note the vowel sounds and spellings (“e” for /e/ and “y” for /ī/).

  • Consider extending this activity to include more words once students are familiar with more letter combinations. Examples:
    • “send,” “sending,” “tend,” “tending,” “lending,” “bending,” “pretend,” “pretending”
  • Review the definition of digraph for students when using “wh” and “sh.”
  • Remind student of the sly “y” when “y” ends a one-syllable word and makes the /ī/ sound.

B. Chaining: Encoding /w/, /sh/, /e/, /n/, /d/, /s/, /l/, /ī/ ("y"), /m/, /b/, /e/, /p/, /g/, /r/, /ing/

  • (Suggested transition song, sung to the tune of “The More We Get Together”):

“Now it’s time to spell the words, using letter sound connections. Now it’s time to spell the words; be careful, listen for the sounds.”

  • Continue with the Chaining instructional practice, now focusing on the encoding portion:

1. Teacher says the first word: “my.”

2. Students say “my.”

3. Teacher writes the letters that correspond to each sound on the board, emphasizing proper letter formation (see Letter Formation chart for suggested formation of each letter): m-y.

4. Teacher covers the word: “my.”

5. Students write the word on their whiteboards from memory: “my.”

6. Teacher uncovers the word.

7. Students check their spelling.

8. Students erase their whiteboards.

9. Teacher and students repeat steps 1–8 with the remaining words.

Closing & Assessments

ClosingMeeting Students' Needs

A. Reflecting on Learning

  • Emphasize that successful learners keep track of and reflect on their own learning. Point out that they are doing this each time they consider how what they did today helps them to become more proficient readers.
  • Invite students to reflect and share with a partner (or whole group). Ask:

"What did you do today that is helping you become a more proficient reader?" (Responses will vary. Example: "I matched sounds to letters to blend sounds together to make a word.")

  • For students who need additional support organizing their ideas: Provide sentence frames. Examples:
    • "When I made the sounds for the word _____, I _____."
    • "When I wrote the letter _____, I _____."
    • "When I blended the sounds _____, I _____."

Differentiated Small Groups: Work with Teacher

Suggested Plan: Teacher works with the Pre-Alphabetic and Partial Alphabetic groups. Teacher may meet briefly with the Full and Consolidated groups to provide a weekly Word List and exit ticket or possibly set up a management system allowing these students to find the list and exit ticket and begin work independently.

Note: Groups not working with the teacher at a given time should be engaged in purposeful independent rotation work. Refer to the Independent and Small Group Work Guidance document for more details (see K-2 Skills Resource Manual).

Pre-Alphabetic:

  • Aim small group instruction at building students' knowledge and skills of letter identification and phonological awareness.
  • Use the Assessment Conversion chart to determine appropriate Kindergarten lessons and Activity Bank ideas to use in daily small group instruction.

Partial Alphabetic:

  • Use the assessments from previous cycles to determine whether students in this group have mastered decoding and encoding VC and CVC words with short vowels.
  • If students have mastered short vowels, work on chaining (decoding and encoding) using short vowel words with digraphs. Emphasize articulatory gestures: how the sounds feel and how the mouth changes position from one sound to the next.
  • If students have not mastered short vowels, continue to work on chaining and spelling from memory with short vowel words that do not contain digraphs. Start with VC until mastery is achieved using real and nonsense words (examples: "am," "ap"). Consider using previously introduced consonants as well as those introduced in today's whole group lesson if students can manage. Review any consonant sounds and letter formation that may not be automatic.
  • Related Activity Bank suggestions:
    • An Activity Bank activity from the Decoding and Encoding category (DE)

Full and Consolidated Alphabetic:

  • Establish weekly Word Lists and exit tickets for independent work time.
  • Additional Supporting Materials:
    • Word List Guidance (for teacher reference)
    • Word List (one per student or per pair)
    • Word Card Template (example, can be revised based on needs of group; one per student or per pair)
    • Sorting Words Template (one per student or per pair)

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