A Gift for You: Words for Writers

IMG_1657I’ve put together a great resource for teachers and parents. This “Words for Writers & Editor’s Checklist” is a list of the most commonly used words in English, and will help your students/child with spelling and writing. If it is a very common word, such as “who, what, when, where, and why,” then the word will be listed in this small packet.

This comes as a gift when you sign up for my free quarterly newsletter (see sidebar to right to sign up/ or click here to see homepage/sidebar). My quarterly newsletter, which is a one page e-mail, offers tips, stories, and information that will be especially helpful in working with your students and/or child.”Words for Writers” will be included as a PDF. 

IMG_1658This freebie will help you give some ownership back into your students’ hands. If you know it is a basic, common word, you can direct them to look it up.

We have a book binder at our school, so I bound mine, but a heavy duty stapler works as well.

I promise to never, ever spam you or share your email!

The Six Syllable Types: Vowel-Consonant-e Syllable

This week we will look at vowel-consonant-e syllables.

A Vowel-Consonant-e Syllable:

  • Has a vowel, consonant, and then an e.
  • The first vowel is a long vowel sound.
  • The e is silent.

gif_book121This rule is among the first rules we teach with regards to long vowels and single syllable words. Examples include: cake, cape, kite, ride, cove, rose, tube, and cute. We emphasize that the silent e makes the previous vowel say its “name”—that is, a long vowel sound. Students need to be able to differentiate between a short and long vowel sound to understand this syllabication type.

I like to have students look at the difference between words when the silent e is added. For instance, “cap” turns to “cape” with the silent e. “Hop” turns to “hope.” Have students practice reading words with and without the silent e.

This syllable type can be found in multisyllabic words, often paired with a closed syllable. Examples include: in·vite, name·sake (two cvce syllables), rep·tile, dis·crete, etc.

There are some exceptions to this rule. In English, words do not end in the letter /v/.  Words like “give,” glove,” and “solve” do not have a long vowel. Other common words that are exceptions are: palace, favorite, justice, notice, damage, etc.

If you are interested, I have a nice unit on TeachersPayTeachers where students can read short stories and practice this syllable pattern (at the K/1st grade level). 

An Amazing Pencil Sharpener!

IMG_1659We have a new colleague on our personalized learning team, and she introduced us to an amazing pencil sharpener.

Can you really get excited about a great pencil sharpener? Well, if you’re a teacher, the answer is a definitive “yes.”

My students call it the “old fashioned” pencil sharpener because it is not electric. That is part of the appeal for me–no high pitch grinding noise. Also, it will not eat your pencils. It grips the pencil and sharpens it to a sharp point, and no more. This is not a paid endorsement 🙂

IMG_1653

Like coloring books, there is something therapeutic about sharpening a bunch of pencils all at once.

The brand is: CARL ANGEL-5 Pencil Sharpener. “The Original Quality.”

The Six Syllable Types: Open Syllables

jpg_seeBefore summer break, I started a series on the six basic syllable types. I blogged generally on the six types, and on closed syllables and more on closed syllables. Today I am resuming with open syllables.

As a refresher, the logic behind teaching syllable types is that it helps take the mystery out of reading, especially for students with reading disabilities. Students are given the tools to attack a word, and break it down into smaller, readable parts.

Open Syllables:

  • End in one vowel.
  • The vowel sound is long.

Examples of open syllables are: hi, so, he, she, try, si·lent (“si” is open), re·pent, by·line.

The Exceptions: The a can make the schwa sound as in A·las·ka. The i can make the short i sound as in com·pli·cate.

Next week we will look at vowel-consonant-e syllables.