In a previous blog post, we discussed NO MORE LETTER OF THE WEEK.
Instead of letter of the week, children benefit from exposure to all letters with meaningful experiences. Children need to compare and contrast letters based on formation and sounds. To help students with comparison, we can provide multiple experiences for them to sort letters.
As noted by researches Fountas and Pinnell:
“Children’s first efforts at matching and sorting may be with letters of different shapes or colors, but they can soon learn to sort letters, match letters, find letters with features in common such as tails, circles, short sticks, tall sticks, tunnels, dots, capitals, and so on. Their time spent sorting letters in a myriad of ways is essential to learning how to look at print in the early levels. They need to develop fast, flexible recognition of letters. Begin with just a few letters rather than all twenty-six, and concentrate on the lowercase letters and get the children to develop speed in matching or sorting.“
From Guided Reading: Responsive Teaching Across the Grades by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Copyright (C) 2017 by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. Published by Heinemann.
FREE DOWNLOAD: Labels and Ideas for Sorting Letters
Some fun materials to use for sorting:
(link to Amazon or just use found materials!)
- Wood cookies
- Cardboard letters cut from food and drink packages
- Lids to jars, water bottles, and plastic containers
- Small Square Wood Pieces or Wood Pieces with Rounded Edges with Letters Painted (scrabble style letter stencils to add the extension of math as well)
- Vase Gems