My Phonics Must-Haves: A Complete List of Tools and Resources

 Over the years, phonics has become one of my favorite subjects to teach.  I have seen from experience how vital phonics instruction is and the impact it has on students' reading abilities.  The more spelling patterns are introduced to students, the more words they are able to decode within text.  By the end of first grade, you can see so much growth!  That's probably why first grade ended up being my favorite grade to teach.  In this post, I thought I would do a round up of my favorite phonics tools and resources that I have come to love over the years.  These are things I have used in whole group instruction, small group instruction, and at centers.  These are all supplemental materials and tools that I used in addition to our phonics curriculum when we had one.  The first school I was at used Saxon Phonics, and the other school did not have a phonics curriculum.  We had to supplement much more in that case.


Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

This post may contain affiliate links.

Interactive Phonics Anchor Charts

I know I have talked about these a thousand times, but I just LOVE anchor charts.  Anchor charts are most beneficial when they are interactive and created WITH students.  I have the bones of the anchor chart already created, but students help me encode the words to match the pictures on the chart.  They even come up and write them for us. These are just a great starting point for introducing a new spelling pattern.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Students get their own mini anchor charts to put into their phonics journals.  I print the black and white version and then copy them 2 to a page on the copy machine.  This makes them the perfect size for a composition notebook. 

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!


Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

We add to the anchor charts throughout the week as we discover new words that contain the spelling patterns we are studying.  Students love discovering new words all around that fit the spelling pattern that we are learning about.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Phonics Posters

We typically introduce one spelling pattern per week.  Of course that might contain several spelling patterns within one syllable type.  It just depends on the scope and sequence.  I like to print posters containing those spelling patterns to display on our boards for that week.  Afterwards, I move them to the phonics center/word work area.  I just find it helpful for students to have the posters with pictures to reference during the unit.

You can print the rainbow option ones or the ones that have the vowels as red and the consonants blue.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Syllable types are also an important component of phonics.  These are essential when your students begin decoding longer words.  These posters contain each of the syllable types.  We teach these within the different spelling patterns.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Student Tools

I have used all kinds of tools over the years, but these are a few favorites.  These tools allow hands-on practice when encoding and decoding words.  They are also helpful in making your phonics more engaging for students.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Linking cubes are great for all of the phonemic awareness skills.  They help us isolate, segment, and blend.  We can then use those to help us encode new words in phonics.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Play-Doh is another fun tool.  Have students roll it into balls.  They can then smash each sound as they segment.  Have them then blend the sounds together to make the word.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

These fun suction balls are a huge hit!  You can write different words on a whiteboard.  In this case, I did short and long vowel a words.  Students have to throw the ball at a long vowel a word.  They then have to read the word.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

I have used this little table pocket chart everyday for years.  I keep it for small groups on my teacher table.  We use it to sort words by their spelling patterns, as well as to encode new words that follow the spelling pattern we are practicing.  Here is a link to really cute black one! 

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Phoneme grapheme mapping is a SUPER important skill to practice.  The book, Phonics and Spelling Through Phoneme Grapheme Mapping, was very helpful in teaching me the correct way to map the sounds as students encode.  (You might can find it somewhere else cheaper.) I made this printable to go inside a dry erase pouch.  We used these ALL THE TIME.  We not only practiced phonics dictation with them, but we also did sentence dictation at the end.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Students really get into finding words following the spelling pattern in text.  They use these little magnifying glasses to identify those words in decodable texts.

Phonics Centers

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

I feel like there is never enough time for adequate practice of new spelling patterns.  I use my phonics/word work center to allow students to have that extra practice.  I will go into more detail in another post about how I set up this center for easy prep that is manageable from week to week, but here are a few of what I feel are the most engaging and beneficial activities students complete at the center.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

This board game is always a class favorite.  I used it as an early finisher activity or a fun Friday game.  It's a great incentive to complete the other activities at the center.  Students have to spell the word of the corresponding picture they land on.  It gets really competitive!

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Somehow a spinner makes everything more exciting!  Students have to map out the sounds of the image they land on.  They also have to sort it according to the spelling pattern it follows.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Can you tell that we do lots of phoneme grapheme mapping?!  They have to choose a card and map out the sounds from the image while again sorting them by spelling patterns.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

Some other tools we have are dry erase markers and dice.  I keep these ready to go at the center.

A few other favorite resources we use from other TPT sellers can be found below.  I always have these available for small group and center practice, as well as for early finisher activities.  They are really effective and engaging.  I used these in first and second grades.

Phonics Games for First Grades

Roll and Read Fluency Sentences

Storage

Organization is key when it comes to managing your materials for phonics.  Once I make everything, I store for the following years to save time in the future.  I used to use my filing cabinet to store everything, but that became disastrous...if you know me, you know I am a drawer stuffer.  So, I got these filing storage boxes.  They look nice and help me see everything I have.  I sort everything in file folders by spelling pattern.  I put my posters, student practice pages, and other single page activities in the folders.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!


Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

I store my games in these clear boxes.  I organize by syllable types in these.  I put student games and activities inside each box that we can use at teacher table and at centers.  I will use these activities as early finishers at centers, which is great because students already know how to play them.  It makes it so easy for me to find an activity that I can use at small groups or centers that fit what that group needs.

Must have phonics activities and tools for the classroom!

All month on the blog, we are going to be discussing phonics instruction and practices.  Up next, I will show you how we assessed phonics skills using phonics and sentence dictation assessments.  We will also cover the components of a good phonics lesson, and we will go into more detail on setting up an engaging and effective phonics center.  Thanks, as always, for stopping by!

No comments

Post a Comment