Phonemic Awareness Video Reviews

Teaching Phonemic Awareness-Video 1

This video was in a small group setting. There were both positives and negatives I saw with this video. First, the teacher explains to the students the senses they use in reading and why they are useful. Also, she explains to the students that the things they are learning today are going to help them become better readers. She states “we read to know”. After all the articles we read this week that go back and forth between reading to learn and learning to read, I loved that she said that! She works with the students on the types of letter sounds in the alphabet, noisy(vibrate in your throat) vs quiet, brother sounds, and the moves your mouth makes for groups of letters. I found all of this information useful to teachers but the students that were in the group looked bored and were often off task. She then moves on to the motions your mouth makes with vowels.

Phonemic Awareness: Phoneme Segmentation

The activities in this video are wonderful for younger aged students or even those who are still struggling to learn to read. The woman in the video states the the end goal of phoneme segmentation is is for students to be able to independently break down the sounds in a word, either to read or spell. She gives four examples that are very easy to make or are found on her blog. I have visited it before it is called Make, Take, Teach and is a wonderful resource! The way she goes about teaching these activities is in a “I do- We do- You do” process, or gradual release. The four activities covered are Breaking Up words, Squaring Up, Say it Move it and Bead Slide. Each activity uses manipulatives to help students count how many sounds they hear in each word.

REACH Workshop: Phonemic Awareness

The final video briefly goes through the order in which to teach phonemic awareness, starting at the basic level of how many words in a sentence, syllables and finally manipulating individual sounds. This video shows small clips of different teachers teaching phonemic awareness in the classroom. Th most beneficial piece of information I got out of this video was that phonemic awareness should be taught 10-20 minutes daily, throughout the day! There are teachers using phonemic awareness activities as part of their transitions. Such as one teacher, she uses syllables to have the students line up. She calls each student from the rug, gives them a word, they clap it and then line up. Another teacher uses it as a transition from centers. She give a word and asks for a rhyming word as they transition to the next center. Some teachers even sneak it in during snack time!

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Phonics Posters

Here are some posters that I have hanging in my room this summer. We focused this summer on “decoding skills” that we could use while we are independent reading. These were all pre-taught and practiced during guided reading time. Also, many of my students struggle with the “magic e” rule or as we are calling it “Sneaky e”. After we practice the poem, we practice this skill with both real and pseudo words. Starting with saying the word in a short vowel sound with the e, and then adding the “Sneaky E” on it and “shouting” the long vowel sound out loud. Something to make you laugh, during our phonics screener I had students yelling out these words to me, and they said “just like the poem.” : )

decoding strategies poster sneaky e poster

Reflection: Situated Language and Learning

One part that I found very interesting in this article was the discussion of teaching reading as a cultural process vs an instructed process. The examples of cooking and video games really helped me distinguish what the author meant by a cultural process. I had always hoped that what the author described as a “cultural process” was how my classroom environment was in my own room. I keep wanting to say community instead of cultural process but in my head they are intertwined. As described in the article example about cooking, the adult who is teaching cooking uses different materials, engages the learner and eventually scaffolds for the learner to try the cooking on their own. To me this is a community where the learning is shared and discovered. And as the author states, it is how most kids learn today.

I also want to point out that while this cultural process is a great way to introduce new topics and over all teach I do believe that the traditional way of “instructional process” does have some value. In personal experience I have seen students that have trouble reading, identifying letter names and sounds, become very successful with repetition of letter name and sound. This goes against the cultural approach and leans more with the kill and drill approach. But is some cases I do feel like students need that basic fact/memorization aspect to become better, more successful readers. Something that I do when trying to teach this skill to struggling readers is pair a letter name with its sound and a motion. There is a complete program already made up called sounds and motions. This makes the “kill and drill” approach more appealing to students.

I realize that I went on about this one particular topic but this was a large area of interest to me and I really felt like I could relate to it.

Reflection: Supporting Phonemic Awareness in the Classroom

This was a very helpful article to read. Although I teach third grade and phonics is not heavily taught, I have many students who are significantly below grade level. It was insightful for me to read about different strategies to help those students. It may not be done as a whole group but I meet with these students who are labeled “intensive” every day for similar phonics and phonemic awareness activities. Something else helpful that I gained from the article was the order in which the phonemic awareness activities were taught. I had always thought to teach the individual phonemes first then build up to things like rhyming and syllables. But it makes more sense to start with the “bigger and easier” items since students don’t need to read these words in order to participate in most of these activities. Just listen.

Lego-gender Remix

After mashing up a few videos with the Lego-gender Remix I found it very interesting how different a children’s toy could be advertised for different genders. When I had the girls visual showing, even with the boys advertisement voice, it still seemed pleasing. There were bright colors and smiling faces. When I switched them and had the boys visual with the girls advertisement voice, there were dark dreary colors, violence and loud action noises. Even the topics were drastically different. All of the girls advertisements showed friends playing with animals, baking things, helping each other and playing outside. All of the “boys” topics involved fighting and violence or known characters from TV shows and movies.

This trend continues with books, television shows and most of the time society. In the articles we read this week they all seemed to say the same thing. That children and their learning are influenced by their surroundings, both physical and social. I do believe that books may influence children at a young age on important topics such as gender or identity. A lot of books that are out there today have gender specific plots or themes. I think that these types of gender specific books don’t typically turn up in a child’s library until after the pre-school level. (This is just based on books I have in my own classroom and school library) To contradict myself, I also feel like there are many more gender neutral stories that are out there. I teach the third grade and many fictional stories that we read have no specific lean towards either gender.

Another thought. In the third grade we do a lot of research and reading on biographies. Many of the people are from the past and have very bold character traits, such as brave, independent, determined, ect. After reading series of books like this I do notice my students taking on some of the traits we have read about. For example, after doing an extensive unit on Ruby Bridges I noticed my students being more caring and accepting of people who are different. I also noticed that they appreciated learning and school more after seeing what she went through to go to school.

Reflection: A Historical Persective on Reading Research and Practice

I will start out by being honest. I was truly not aware of all of the history behind the development for reading and writing.  As teachers we have been told best practices on how to teach reading and in some psychology classes have discussed a little bit about the why, but I never questioned where this all originated from and why it has ended up the way it is now. After reading about all the different era’s, I noticed how each one seemed to “piggy back” on the previous one, changing and developing the things that did not work previously. As said at the end of the reading, “As we look across the eras of reading research on learners and learning and consider the characteristics and guiding principles unique to each, we cannot help but recognize that there are patterns evident in the fabric of that literature on learners and learning that bind those eras together.”

Also, it was interesting to see and understand why we teach reading the way we do today. The article mentioned that reading has changed based on what is happening around us. For example, the baby boomers era and Sputnik during the 1960s and 1970s had a large impact on reading research. Today we are integrating technology because that is what our students are going to need to function in this society. Every day the world around us seems to change as well as the needs of our students. It seems only logical that teaching reading and writing would be changing with those needs as well.

First post

I am taking this class as an elective to finish up my masters in Special Education. I have taken a couple other online courses but none so tech savvy as this one. My technological intelligence goes as far as turning on and off the computer, using my Smartboard and opening some social media sights…so this should be interesting. I am hoping to learn best practices in reading that I can turn key them in my classroom to help my very diverse learners. Teaching math is my strong suit and reading is an area that I hope to continue to learn and improve in.