Does that mean I can just snap off the teaching part of me and it is no longer part of my life? Absolutely not. I love being the #1 educator of my kids. I start young. I keep it fun. If they’re interested in learning, we play games and interact with literature and numbers. If they’re not too interested, I don’t push it. I read books and expose them to learning in every day life. Most of the time, I’m pretty sure they are unaware that I’m trying to teach them. I am a firm believer in that it takes balance to teach kids. Do kids learn through phonics? Absolutely. Do they learn through whole language? Absolutely. There are a number of ways to expose kids to literature and teach them to read. One of my favorite activities in beginning reading is to introduce them to word families? What are word families? They are words that have the same ending with a different beginning. Here are a few:
ate family – mate, fate, rate, date, plate, crate, gate, etc.
Kenzie is at the point where she is beginning to read. We have done a lot of activities to learn her letters and sounds. Now it’s time to put it all together. Here’s an activity that can help introduce your own children to the concept of word families. Since Kenzie is a beginning reader, we started with C-V-C words (consonant – vowel – consonant). There are examples above of words with blends at the beginning (i.e. fl, pl, cr), but we are sticking with three letter words for now. I had seen activities involving getting paint sample cards with the holes in them and putting other cards behind with the beginning sounds. I like that idea but I couldn’t find any at our hardware store, so I wanted to come up with another idea. This is what I came up with to teach the word family concept.
You will need: two paper plates, a paper fastener (brad), circle cutter (or scissors to cut the hole), letter stickers (or just use a marker and write down your letters), chalkboard sticker paper (I had this on hand, you could easily use chalkboard paint too), and chalk
The first thing we did was punch a hole in one of the paper plates.
The next step is to stack the plates with the plate that has the hole on top of the other plate. Attach them together by poking a hole and adding the fastener or brad.