I am always looking for fun learning activities that I can use with my Basic Skills students. I want activities that are project-based and that will give my students the reinforcement they need. When I was a classroom teacher, I integrated art into our core subject areas. My goal was to hopefully integrate art into my sessions with my students.
Interactive Vowel Posters
I created an activity that I have enjoyed using with my first-grade students the past few years. During the beginning of the school year, my students learned short vowel sounds in their classroom. When I met with my students, we would review the current sounds for the week using sorts. As a culminating activity, I had my students label short vowel words on our interactive vowel posters. These posters are interactive because the students are adding the words, and they continue to add words during the year.
First we brainstormed different short vowel words based on specific word families (ex., Short A word families: -an, -am, -at, etc.) as a group. The students added the words we listed and some of their own on their papers. We also discussed words they remembered from class. After our brainstorming session, I had each student choose three words to write on their group’s poster. (The students highlighted their words on the paper, so they could find them easily while working.)
The students wrote their names at the bottom of the poster in different colored markers. I wanted them to use the same markers to write their chosen words. This way, I could tell at a glance which student wrote certain words. Finally, they added their words to the poster.
This was a great way to assess the students knowledge of short vowels. We could also hang our posters outside of the classroom, so students could refer to them in the hallway each day.
When we started studying long vowels, I turned the posters over (you would have to rotate the E) and repeated the project.
My students enjoyed working on these posters and took pride in seeing them in the hallway. These vowel posters were a valuable tool for reinforcing short and long vowel sound patterns.
First Published August 23, 2015