Interactive Sentence Building | EL Education Curriculum

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ELA GK:S3:C15:L79

Interactive Sentence Building

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Daily Learning Targets

  • Opening A: I can match words that rhyme by the sounds I hear. (RF.K.2)
    • When given a word, I can create a new rhyming word by changing the first sound in the word.
  • Work Time A: I can point to each word in a poem as I read it. (RF.K.1I can create a new rhyming word by changing the first sound. (RF.K.2)
    • I can point to each word in a line of memorized text.
    • I can point to words in a shared poem.
    • When given a word, I can create a new rhyming word by changing the first sound in the word.
    • I can print many lowercase letters.
    • I can write the letter or letters for most of the consonants I hear.
    • I can write the letter or letters for most of the short vowel sounds I hear.

Ongoing Assessment

  • Observe students during the Opening and Work Time. Determine whether they can hear and match the rimes.
  • Observe students during Work Time A. Determine whether they can follow along with the poem using one-to-one correspondence.
  • Record students' progress on the Snapshot Assessment.



1. Opening (5 minutes)

A. Make a Match

2. Work Time (10-15 minutes)

A. Interactive Sentence Building

3. Closing and Assessment (2 minutes)

A. Reflecting on Learning

4. Differentiated Small Group Instruction and Rotations (40-45 minutes)

In Advance

  • Copy and cut apart Rhyming Picture Cards.
  • Write lines of interactive poem "A Bug," with some words missing, on chart paper or sentence strips (see Teaching Notes for explanation).
  • Prepare the Snapshot Assessment (optional; one per student).
  • Gather materials for differentiated small group instruction (see Differentiated Small Groups: Work with Teacher).


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

  • interactive, segment (L)
  • cocoa, mug, scrub, shiny, thud (T)


  • Rhyming Picture Cards (see supporting materials)
  • Enlarged Interactive Poem with some words missing: "A Bug" (written on sentence strips or handwritten on chart paper to display; see supporting materials)
  • Snapshot Assessment (optional; one per student)


OpeningMeeting Students' Needs

A. Make a Match

  • (Suggested transition song, sung to the tune of "Frere Jacques"):

"Now it's match time, now it's match time. Hear the words, hear the words. Match the endings together, match the endings together. Make a pair, make a pair."

  • Begin the Make a Match instructional practice:

1. Students stand in a circle to "fish for matches."

2. Teacher says: "Today we are going to challenge ourselves to use what we know about rhyming sounds to match rhyming words together."

3. Teacher places Rhyming Picture Cards facedown in the middle of the circle.

4. Teacher says: "When I say 'It's time to fish,' each person is going to use his or her imaginary fishing pole to pick up a Rhyming Picture Card from the imaginary pond."

5. Teacher models using the imaginary fishing pole to pick up a Rhyming Picture Card.

6. Teacher says: "Once you have your Rhyming Picture Card, you will try to make a match. You will find the person who has a Rhyming Picture Card that rhymes with your Rhyming Picture Card. Once you've found that person, you have made a match! It's time to fish!"

7. Students "fish" for cards, find partners, and decide together whether their cards rhyme with each other.

8. Partners sit down when they find a match and share their rhyming words with the class, if time allows.

9. Teacher says: "We have just matched pictures that rhyme. Next, we will find missing rhyming words together."

  • If students need help finding a match, provide sentence starters for them to use. Example:
    • "I have the picture bed. Do you have a picture that rhymes with bed, that ends with '-ed'?"
  • Circulate while students search for a match, guiding students to find their partners if they need additional support.
  • Consider modeling with a volunteer how to "prove" that two words rhyme (or don't rhyme) by segmenting the onset (first sound) from the rime (ending chunk) in each word to compare. Invite students to do this with their partners to make sure they have successfully made a match.

Work Time

Work TimeMeeting Students' Needs

A. Interactive Sentence Building

  • (Suggested transition song, sung to the tune of "I'm a Little Teapot"):

"Now let's all be writers, word by word. Finish the sentences we just heard. When we choose a word, it will rhyme. It sounds just right, let's do it all the time!"

  • Begin the Interactive Sentence Building instructional practice:

1. Teacher posts the enlarged interactive poem: "A Bug" with some words missing (see Teaching Notes and supporting materials for guidance).

2. Teacher says: "It looks like some of the words for our poem are missing! Let's see if we can figure out the words that are missing!"

3. Teacher reads the first line of the poem: "Once there was a cute little bug."

4. Teacher reads the second line of the poem with the final word omitted: "Who liked to drink cocoa from his mom's coffee _____."

5. Teacher asks:

"Hmm. What word would rhyme with 'bug' and make sense in this sentence?" ("mug")

"How do we know that 'bug' and 'mug' rhyme?" (They both end with "-ug.")

6. Teacher says: "Let's check! Listen to how I segment (separate) the first sound from the ending chunk in 'bug': /b/-/ug/. I hear /ug/ at the end of 'bug.'"

7. Teacher asks:

"Who can do that with the word 'mug'?"

8. Teacher says: "'Bug' and 'mug' rhyme. They both end with '-ug.'"

9. Teacher asks:

"Who can write the missing word, 'mug,' in our poem?"

10. Teacher guides student volunteer in writing the word "mug" while the other students skywrite each letter:

"What is the first sound we hear in 'mug'?" (/m/)

"Right! And what letter says /m/?" ("m")

"So how do we make the letter 'm'?" (Start at the belly line, pull straight down to touch the feet line and back up halfway to belly line, and make a curve to pull straight down to the feet line, back up to the belly line and another curve and pull straight down to the feet line.)

11. Repeat with the middle and final sounds.

12. Teacher rereads the two sentences, modeling one-to-one correspondence as students follow along.

13. Repeat steps 3-12 with the remaining lines of the poem as time allows.

14. Teacher rereads the entire poem, modeling one-to-one correspondence, while students follow along.

  • Consider stretching each rhyming word so that students can hear the ending sounds (rime).
  • Consider segmenting the missing word using the thumb-tapping technique for students to hear each individual sound.
  • Consider providing the sound of the onset when arriving at the missing word. This supports students who need help generating some of the less familiar words such as “thud” or “scrub.”
  • Consider skipping steps 6-8 if students are comfortable with and do not need continued practice with segmenting onset and rime.
  • Consider comparing the written words so that students can see the written rimes (example: “-ug” in “bug” and “mug”).
  • The words “shiny” and “tiny” provide opportunity for students to grapple with how they know a word rhymes with another. These are both two-syllable words. Consider drawing students’ attention to this and supporting them as they articulate what they think makes these words rhyme. In both words, the last syllable is exactly the same (/nē/). In addition, the first syllable in both words ends in the same vowel sound (/ī/). It is the combination of the second phoneme in the first syllable and the entire second syllable (“iny”) that makes these two words rhyme.
  • Consider providing additional guidance as needed for students who need additional support in letter formation. Refer to the Letter Formation Guidance document (see K-2 Skills Resource Manual), if needed.

Closing & Assessments

ClosingMeeting Students' Needs

A. Reflecting on Learning

  • Emphasize that successful learners think about what they've learned and why it's important. Consider using a metaphor, such as a baseball player learning to keep his or her eye on the ball to know exactly when to hit it.
  • Ask:

"When we match rhyming words, what part of the word are we listening to?" (the ending)

"How might that help us with reading or writing?" (Responses will vary.)

  • For students who need additional support organizing their ideas: Provide sentence frames. Example:
    • "When I listened to the sounds in _____, I _____."

Differentiated Small Groups: Work with Teacher

Suggested Plan: Teacher works with the Pre-Alphabetic and Partial Alphabetic groups. At this point in the year, the teacher may be ready to meet with three rather than just two groups per day. If so, the teacher should work with students in the Full and Consolidated Alphabetic phases at least once per week. The teacher may choose to guide students through the suggested independent activity or refer to the possible practice activities.

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) for more details.


  • Practice activity: Teacher guides students in sorting rhyming pictures. Pictures include: "cut," "nut," "dig," "pig," "bag," "wag," "rat," "bat," "sad," "mad," "fan," "pan," "cap," "map," "rug," "bug," "cup," "up," "bun," "sun."
    • Teacher cuts apart Rhyming Picture Cards ahead of time.
    • Teacher guides students in matching rhyming pictures.
    • Students paste pictures on Rhyme Matching sheet.
    • Consider giving students their own individual Rhyming Picture Cards and Rhyme Matching sheet and have them repeat the activity independently.
  • Additional Supporting Materials:
    • Rhyming Picture Cards (one set per student; used also in Opening A)
    • Rhyme Matching sheets (one per student)
    • Scissors and glue sticks (one of each per student)

Partial Alphabetic:

  • Practice activity: Students sort rhyming pictures. Pictures include: "cut," "nut," "dig," "pig," "bag," "wag," "rat," "bat," "sad," "mad," "fan," "pan," "cap," "map," "rug," "bug," "cup," "up," "bun," "sun."
    • Students cut apart Rhyming Picture Cards.
    • Students sort and paste pictures on Rhyme Matching sheet.
  • Additional Supporting Materials:
    • Rhyming Picture Cards (one set per student; used also in Opening A)
    • Rhyme Matching sheets (one per student)
    • Scissors and glue sticks (one of each per student)

Full and Consolidated Alphabetic:

  • Independent Practice activity: Students sort words by rime pattern.
    • Students brainstorm words for each rime pattern.
    • Students write the words on the appropriate Rime Sort sheet.
  • Conference with students about Accountable Independent Reading.
  • Choose a lesson from the K-2 Differentiation Packets to extend the students' learning. (Refer to the students' assessment data and the Assessment Conversion chart to determine an appropriate lesson or group of lessons.)
  • Additional Supporting Materials:
    • Rime Pattern Sort Sheets (one per student)
    • Writing Utensils

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