Monday Mornings: Proverbs, Quotes, and More

IMG_0310Each year, I forget how exhausting the first few weeks of school can be! I hope you are all off to a great new school year!

“I think there is something more important than believing: Action! The world is full of dreamers. There aren’t enough who will move ahead and begin to take concrete steps to actualize their vision.”  -W. Clement Stone

Spelling Rules and Phonics, Part IV


Today is Phonics 101. I have been going over some of the lesser known spelling rules, but was thinking I shouldn’t assume everyone is familiar with the basics of beginning spelling and reading.


Here are the steps to teach beginning reading and spelling:

  • Teach the alphabet.
  • Teach the letter sounds. This includes consonants and short and long vowel sounds.
  • Begin with reading CVC words (consonant-vowel-consonant such as: cat, bet, sit, cot) and beginning sight words (these are very common words such as: the, are, was).
  • Teach basic CVCe words. These are words with a long vowel sound and a silent /e/ at the end (bake, kite, hose, etc.).
  • Teach blends and digraphs (typically with short vowel sounds first). Blends are two (or three) consonants where you say each sound (such as: clasp, mask, fist) and digraphs where two consonants make one new sounds (ch, ck, ph, sh th, wh with words like:  such, duck, shut, which, etc.).
  • Teach students about simple syllables along the way. A syllable is a word or part of a word made by one push of the breath.

Next week, we will be looking at syllables. There are six major syllable types and this is where teaching phonics gets more specific!

Have a happy Friday!

Monday Mornings: Proverbs, Quotes, and More

It is starting to feel like The Chronicles of Narnia, where winter never ends! I took a trip into the mountains this weekend. Compare my drive up with my drive home.

Drive up:

IMG_0273Drive home:

IMG_0279Gorgeous! Still, I am really looking forward to spring weather! They say anticipation is half the fun. I know many of us are starting to anticipate summer vacation as well. :)

“When you expect things to happen – strangely enough – they do happen.” –J. P. Morgan

Spelling Rules and Phonics, Part III

gif_book121 Bonus Letters, the Fizzle, Floss, or Flossy Rule …all common names for this rule.

Another helpful spelling rule is:

If a one-syllable word ends in a short vowel and is immediately followed by the consonants f, l, s, or z, double the consonant.

Examples are:

  • fluff, puff, whiff, off, buff
  • bill, hill, hall, mull, fill, tall
  • mass, kiss, chess, less
  • jazz, buzz, fuzz

(The letter /a/ does not always have the expected short sound.)

Remember, these rules are very helpful for students with specific learning disabilities in making sense of spelling and reading.