Decoding: Syllables | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA G1:S3:C13:L66

Decoding: Syllables

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Daily Learning Targets

  • Opening A: I can segment and blend CVC words with the phonemes (sounds): /k/ (as "c"), /a/, /n/, /o/, /z/, /f/, /l/, /t/, /s/, /i/, /e/, /p/. (RF.1.2)
    • I can say a three-phoneme word and segment it (break it apart) into individual phonemes (sounds) (in order).
    • I can blend three phonemes (sounds) to form a spoken word.
  • Opening B: I can write the graphemes (letters) that match the phonemes (sounds): "c," "a," "n," "o," "t," "p," "a," "l," "f," "s," "e," "z," "i." (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 A: I can identify the vowel sounds in a word to help me determine how many syllables are in the word. (RF.1.2a, RF.1.3d)
    • I can identify the short vowel sounds for each of the five vowel letters.
    • I can listen to a single-syllable word and identify the short vowel it contains.
    • I can identify vowel sounds in the spelling of a multisyllabic (more than one syllable) word.
    • I can identify the number of syllables in a word based on the number of vowel sounds.

Ongoing Assessment

  • Observe students during work with white boards.
    • Determine whether they can blend CVC short vowel words using the patterns for the week.
    • Determine whether they can spell CVC and VC words from memory.

Agenda

Agenda

1. Opening (3-5 minutes)

A. Phonemic Blending and Segmentation: /k/ (as "c"), /a/, /n/, /o/, /z/, /f/, /l/, /t/, /s/, /i/, /e/, /p/

B. Writing the Letter to Match the Sound: "c," "a," "n," "o," "t," "p," "a," "l," "f," "s," "e," "z," "i"

2. Work Time (10 minutes)

A. Decoding: Syllable Sleuth: Closed Two-Syllable Words: "cannot," "granddad," "backpack," "zipper," "muffin," "flattop"

3. Closing and Assessment (3-5 minutes)

A. Reflecting on Learning

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

In Advance

  • Prepare:
    • Syllable Sleuth Word List (one per student or one per pair)
    • Closed Two-Syllable Words anchor chart (see supporting materials)
    • Snapshot Assessment (optional; one per student)
  • Gather materials for differentiated small group instruction (see Differentiated Small Groups: Work with Teacher).

Vocabulary

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

  • syllable, decode, proficient, sleuth (L)

Materials

  • Letter Formation chart (from Module 1; for teacher reference)
  • Syllable Sleuth Word List ("cannot," "rabbit," "granddad," "backpack," "muffin," "flattop") in sheet protectors (one per student or one per pair)
  • White boards (one per student or pair)
  • White board markers (one per student)
  • White board erasers (or tissues, socks, etc.; one per student)
  • Articulatory Gestures Chart (from Lesson 61)
  • Snapshot Assessment (optional; one per student)

Opening

OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Phonemic Blending and Segmentation: /k/ (as "c"), /a/, /n/, /o/, /z/, /f/, /l/, /t/, /s/, /i/, /e/, /p/

  • (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: "Today 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--"can" (/k//a//n/)--using the thumb-tapping technique.

3. Teacher says: "When I blend the sounds together, they make the word 'tap.'" Teacher models blending the phoneme to make a word.

4. Students repeat the thumb-tapping technique, pronouncing each phoneme: /k//a//n/.

5. Students blend the word: "can."

6. Teacher asks:

"What is the vowel sound you hear?" (/a/) Teacher says: "Right! The vowel sound you heard is /a/."

"What sound do you hear before /a/?" (/k/) Teacher says: "Yes, and what kind of sound is /k/?" (consonant)

"And what sound do you hear after /a/?" (/n/) Teacher says: "Right, and what kind of sound is /n/?" (consonant)

7. Teacher says: "So we hear a consonant sound before and after the vowel sound /a/ in this word. I'm noticing that the vowel sound /a/ is closed in on each side by a consonant. Let's see if we notice that same pattern in some other words."

8. Repeat steps 1-6 with several of the remaining words: "not," "zip," "top," "flat," and "less."

  • For students who may 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 instruct them to mirror you.
  • Consider having students use child-friendly language to describe the consonants surrounding the vowel sound (example: "It's like a vowel sandwich!"). Support this discovery as scaffolding for work with syllables by introducing the term "closed" as a description for the relationship.
  • Consider reminding students of "twin power" in Module 2. The double consonant "ss" protects the short vowel phoneme (sound) in "less."

B. Writing the Letter to Match the Sound: "c," "a," "n," "o," "t," "p," "a," "l," "f," "s," "e," "z," "i"

  • (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 says the word: "top."

3. Teacher pronounces the phonemes (sounds): /t/ /o/ /p/.

4. Students repeat: /t/ /o/ /p/.

5. Teacher repeats the phonemes, writing the grapheme (letter) for each phoneme as she says it and inviting students to repeat by "skywriting." Refer to the Letter Formation chart for suggested formation of each letter.

6. Teacher asks:

"What do you notice about the vowel sound in this word?" (It has a consonant on either side.)

7. Teacher says: "Right! We can see that the vowel sound /o/ is closed on both sides by a consonant. Let's see if we notice that in other words."

8. Repeat steps 2-6 for the remaining words: "can," "less," "zip," and "flat."

  • Consider identifying the consonant blend in the word "flat" (CCVC). Emphasize the concept that there is only one vowel in this word with many consonants.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Decoding: Syllable Sleuth: Closed Two-Syllable Words: "cannot," "granddad," "backpack," "zipper," "muffin," "flattop"

  • (Suggested transition song, sung to the tune of "I've Been Working on the Railroad"):

"We've been workin' on long words, sound by sound by sound. We've been workin' on long words, so we can read more words aloud. We take a word like 'exit' and break it into parts. 'Ex' plus 'it' makes 'exit,' and now it's time to start!"

  • Begin the Syllable Sleuth instructional practice:

1. Teacher says: "Last week, we learned how to be syllable sleuths. Today we are going to be a syllable sleuth again. Remember, a sleuth is like a detective. We are going to be like detectives to learn about syllables. Listen to our first word!"

2. Teacher says word aloud: "cannot."

3. Students echo word back to teacher: "cannot."

4. Teacher asks:

"How many vowel sounds do you hear in 'cannot'?" (two)

5. Teacher says: "Right! There are two vowel sounds in the word 'cannot.'"

6. Teacher writes: "cannot" on the board and reads it aloud.

7. Students repeat: "cannot" as teacher slides underneath the word.

8. Teacher asks:

"How many vowels do you see?" (two)

9. Teacher circles vowels "a" and "o."

10. Teacher says: "cannot" again and asks:

"What kind of sound do these vowels make?" (short)

11. Teacher asks:

"What do you notice about the vowels in this word?" (They are both between two consonants.) "Right! I'm going to underline the consonants around the vowels."

12. Teacher underlines consonants ("n," "n," "c," "t") and repeats the word: "cannot."

13. Teacher divides "cannot" by making a vertical line between the first "n" and the second "n."

14. Teacher asks:

"How many parts do you see in our word?" (two)

15. Teacher says: "That's right! These parts are called syllables. This word has two syllables: 'can' and 'not.'"

16. Teacher asks:

What do you notice about these two syllables? What do they both have?" (a vowel sound)

17. Teacher says: "That's right! Each syllable has one vowel sound in it. And when we circle the vowels, we can begin to divide this word into syllables. We underline the consonants on each side of the vowel and then divide the word between those consonants. Now we can see the two syllables in this word."

18. Teacher asks:

"What do you notice about both parts of this word?" (Each part is a word by itself.)

19. Teacher says: "Right! When two words makes one word, we call it a compound word. Today, we will read some compound words and some words that are not compound words."

20. Teacher says: "You are going to act as sleuths to find the syllables in words today. Remember, a sleuth is a detective. Your job is to search for the clues that let you know you have found a syllable. As a syllable sleuth this week, you will look for vowel sounds to see how many syllables are in new words. Then you can underline the consonants to find where to divide the word, and then you have found the syllables!"

21. Teacher distributes materials (Syllable Sleuth Word List, white boards, white board markers, and white board erasers).

22. Teacher guides students in their word analysis.

23. Students continue with steps above to divide each word into syllables: "rabbit," "granddad," "backpack," "muffin," "flattop."

  • Use the language "vowel sound" to build knowledge for future learning when vowel teams (examples: "ea," "ie," and "ou") are introduced in multisyllabic words.
  • To help students understand what a syllable is, use the definition "a syllable is each part of the word with a vowel sound."
  • Encourage students to recognize a syllable by noticing when the jaw drops. The amount of times their jaw drops equals the number of syllables in a word.
  • Consider explaining to students that a compound word is two words within one word that have a single meaning.
  • In step 16, when working with the word "backpack," remind students the digraph "ck" makes one sound (/k/). Underline the digraph together so students see the syllable division happens between the digraph "ck" and the consonant "p."
  • Consider extending this activity to include more compound words.
    • Examples: "jigsaw," "goldfish," "himself," "hangman," "catfish."

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 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 these materials 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 (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:

  • For students in the mid to late Partial Alphabetic (PA) phase, consider continuing the Work Time instruction with two-syllable short-vowel words that do not contain consonant blends (examples: "sunset," "basket"). This allows for each syllable (example: "sun" and "set") to be more easily decoded.
  • For students in the early PA phase, use the Assessment Conversion chart to determine if there is a previous cycle(s) that needs revisiting. If so, use lessons from that cycle to develop mastery before moving on to two-syllable (VCCV) words.
  • Related Activity Bank suggestions:
    • Syllable Snake
    • Word Syllable Game
    • Syllable March

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 (one per student or per pair)
    • Sorting Words Template (one per student or per pair)

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