Subject: Language arts
Skills: Reading, writing, pronunciation
Materials: Paper, pencil
Time: 15-20 minutes
This exercise shows your child how to sound out words -- particularly words with vowels -- without going letter by letter.
Write down a series of rhyming words that contain the same sounds and the same letters. For example, "peek, seek, and meek"; or "lip, tip, hip, and flip."
Read the list aloud to your child, pointing out the letters that repeat the rhyming sounds -- that is, the "eek" or the "ip" in the examples above. Ideally, your child will see a connection between the letters and the repeated rhyming sounds.
Write a nonsense word that uses one of the rhyming sounds you've already introduced -- for example, "deek." Ask your child to read the nonsense word aloud. If he can, this indicates he's able to pronounce letter sounds based on a family of "eek" words.
Try writing more complicated words based on the same rhyming family. For example, you could write "seeker" or "flipper." See if your child can read these words, as well.
Write a list of rhyming words -- for example, "bay, ray, say, may, pay." Tell your child you're going to make up a story using all these words. Then recite an off-the-cuff sentence, such as, "On the bay was a ray of sun -- say, you may pay me a dollar to see it!" Write another list of rhyming words and ask your child to use this list to come up with a sentence or two.
For more tips and activities, visit eSCORE.com.
More on: 1st Grade Language Arts