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Author Brian P Cleary

Brian P Cleary is a prolific author who has written many books, including the titles below that are perfect for practicing different phonics patterns. Follow the sequence for teaching reading to introduce these.

  • Short u – “The Bug in the Jug Wants a Hug” by Brian Cleary
  • Silent e – “Nice Mice in the Rice” by Brian P Cleary
  • Vowel Teams: AI – “The Frail Snail on the Trail” & EA “The Peaches on the Beaches”
  • Digraphs: “Whose Shoes Would You Choose?,” “The Thing on the Wing Can Sing,” and “Spring in the Kingdom of Ying”
  • Diphthongs: “Whose Shoes Would You Choose?” and “The Clown in the Gown Drives the Car with the Star”

Check out his website at www.brianpcleary.com.

Learn about more phonics favs, and more books to target specific phonics skills at READ, just read

Mr. Nussbaum

This Phonics Focus is about the website mrnussbaum.com, a Phonics Fav with many free helpful tools and games. More resources can be obtained with a subscription. While there are resources for many subject areas, the language arts category is of most interest for learning to read. Mr. Nussbaum makes great use of audio. In the video, we highlight:

Literacy Tools

Games

Reading Comprehension Cubes

Reading Strategies for Comprehension

Get a free copy of cubes for reading comprehension at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers. One includes strategies for reading comprehension, the other has the elements of a story.

Elements of a story

Find websites with passages to check reading comprehension at READ, just read.

See Recipes for Reading Comprehension Strategies at the Balanced Literacy Diet.

Animal Alphabet

The Animal Antics A to Z series by Barbara DeRubertis includes a book with each letter for teaching the alphabet. Each title is an example of alliteration, with the repetition of the same or similar consonant sounds in words that are close to one another. Rhyme and alliteration help to develop phonological awareness skills.

Animal antics A to Z by Barbara DeRubertis

1.Alexander Anteater’s amazing act (Jan 2010)
2.Bobby Baboon’s banana be-bop (Jan 2010)
3.Corky Cub’s crazy caps (Jan 2010)
4.Dilly Dog’s dizzy dancing (Jan 2010)
5.Eddie Elephant’s exciting egg-sitting (Sep 2010)
6.Frances Frog’s forever friend (Sep 2010)
7.Gertie Gorilla’s glorious gift (Sep 2010)
8.Hanna Hippo’s horrible hiccups (Sep 2010)
9.Izzy Impala’s imaginary illnesses (Sep 2010)
10.Jeremy Jackrabbit’s jumping journey (Sep 2010)
11.Kylie Kangaroo’s karate kickers (Jan 2011)
12.Lana Llama’s little lamb (Jan 2011)
13.Maxwell Moose’s mountain monster (Jan 2011)
14.Nina Nandu’s nervous noggin (Jan 2011)
15.Oliver Otter’s own office (Jan 2011)
16.Polly Porcupine’s painting prizes (Jan 2011)
17.Quentin Quokka’s quick questions (Jan 2011)
18.Rosie Raccoon’s rock and roll raft (Jan 2011)
19.Sammy Skunk’s super sniffer (Sep 2011)
20.Tessa Tiger’s temper tantrums (Sep 2011)
21.Umma Ungka’s unusual umbrella (Sep 2011)
22.Victor Vicuna’s volcano vacation (Sep 2011)
23.Walter Warthog’s wonderful wagon (Sep 2011)
24.Xavier Ox’s xylophone experiment (Sep 2011)
25.Yoko Yak’s yakety yakking (Sep 2011)
26.Zachary Zebra’s zippity zooming (Sep 2011)

Find the book series listed at Goodreads, and download a printable list here:  Animal Antics A to Z series by Barbara DeRubertis.

more animal alphabet books:

  • ABC Animal Jamboree by Andreae, Giles
  • Animalia by Graeme Base
  • 8, An Animal Alphabet by Elisha Cooper
  • Animal ABC by Marcus Pfister
  • Search and find alphabet of alphabets by Allan Sanders
  • Bembo’s Zoo by Roberto De Vicq de Cumptich

The Animal Alphabet Wakelet has links to videos and printables for learning the alphabet with animals! Find games and more resources at Learn the Alphabet.

The End of Flash

The end of 2020 also means the end of Flash. Many online games that are great to practice phonics skills use Flash, but Adobe will no longer support Flash after December 30, 2020.

Some websites have made games that are more mobile friendly without Flash, notably: ict games, kizphonics, mr. nussbaum, and room recess. Some of these games can be found at the mobile friendly symbaloo.

A work-around found through an article from How To Geek that led me to Ruffle, has been working for me on my laptop. Please note that the instructions do require downloading and unzipping a file to add an extension to Chrome.

The work-around above may be helpful to use games with Flash at some websites like Galactic Phonics, Literactive, and more found at the Symbaloo collections. Sadly, Professor Garfield and clever learner, both excellent for phonemic awareness, have not been working at this writing.

Author Kevin Bolger

Books that are funny are especially popular with kids, which is why “Gran on a Fan: silly short vowels” by Kevin Bolger is a great choice for beginning readers. The author does a great job of creating fun stories while staying within the limitation of using words with short vowels. The illustrations by Ben Hodson are wonderful.

The author has other books for readers as they progress: “Lazy Bear, Crazy Bear” has a focus on long vowels. Two books with sight words are “See Fred Run” and “Fun With Ed and Fred.” Check out his website at www.kevinbolger.com.

Some Love Gloves

Some one syllable words with the letter o and a silent e at the end make the long o sound, like drove and home. Others that you might expect to have a long vowel sound do not. Instead, they make the “uh” schwa sound, which sounds very similar to short u. Some, love, and glove are a few of these. Practice these words after learning about Silent e (III.a).

Notice that this often happens when the letter o comes before the letters m, n, & v. Of course, some words DO follow the Silent e guideline and have the long o sound.

Play an online wordsearch game with these words.

The Some Love Gloves set that includes a worksheet and boardgame is available at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers.

Learn more about the Phonics Pow Toolkit, how to get free word sort games and more free resources.

Word Play Games

Playing with words is a great way to practice skills for reading. This list has some ideas for hands on games to play.

Find more links to online games and hands-on games at ABCs of games for reading.

Catch the Pitch: spelling the final /ch/ sound

Catch a pitch or scratch an itch, the tch is not a glitch! Pinch an inch or catch a pitch, how to know which is which? The /ch/ consonant digraph sound is often spelled -tch immediately after a short vowel in one syllable words. As you might expect, there are some exceptions: such, much, rich, and which.

Eat a peach for lunch on a bench and you may have a hunch: after a consonant or vowel combinations it changes a bunch.

bench

The /ch/ sound is NOT spelled -tch when it comes after a consonant, as in branch, clinch, munch or stench.

wrench artwork copyrighted by Mark A. Hicks, illustrator, http://www.MARKiX.net.

It is just ch with mulch or a wrench, also with a bossy r on a porch.

beach

The /ch/ sound is NOT spelled -tch when it comes after diphthongs and vowel teams: pouch, pooch, coach, or reach. If you sit on a couch or lay on a beach, the ch spelling will be found in each.

Now -ch or -tch spelling will be a cinch to teach!

pouch

This guideline is learned after learning about consonant digraphs (IV.a)

Play an online wordsearch with words that end in -tch.

Practice words with a set of free word sort games for the Phonics Pow Toolkit that include -ch or -tch words. The Catch the Pitch set includes a word list, worksheet, and a board game. Find it at the Super Tutor Tools store at Teachers Pay Teachers.