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Short Vowel Activities & RTI Visual Plans

Short Vowel Puzzles

Short vowels, short vowels, short vowels!  We are all about being proficient with these vowel sounds!  These vowel puzzles make it a fun way to practice.  After they build their words, they must read the words from the clipboard to me- not from the puzzles.  I need to see that they can use those sounds within the words without the picture clues.

Short Vowel Roll It Cubes

We've also been using these cubes.  The kids LOVE rolling cubes!  Then they decide if it is a real or nonsense word.

Blends and Digraphs Roll It Cubes

I have a few RTI students that are ready for the digraphs and blends, but are still using the short vowels in the middle.  

Closed Syllable Multisyllabic Activities

One of my groups needs to apply what they know about vowel sounds in multisyllabic words.  Activities for this skill that I found helpful were really hard to find.  This one really works for me.

Closed Syllable Multisyllabic Activities

Some of my students need the differentiation of printing the beginning syllables on a different color than the second syllable.

Closed Syllable Multisyllabic Activities

The task cards took the activity of closed syllable multisyllabic words up to the next step.  Then there are stories for them to read using these words to make sure students could apply their skills in connected text.

RTI Lesson Plans

My RTI Reading Visual Lesson Plans are posted and hyperlinked for you.  Click here or the picture above to download the lessons and the links.  

Link up with Deedee with your weekly plans too!







Building Comprehension Skills

building reading comprehension

My first guest post at A Spark of Inspiration is posted today!  Go read about how I am helping my RTI students build their reading comprehension skills & then come back here and get this Rocking Comprehension Reminders bookmark that I have created for you!  I would love to hear from you at this great little group of bloggers!


Just click the bookmark picture to pick up your freebie!

A Spark of Inspiration Blog Hop

I have a new adventure that I am so excited about!  I am honored to be the newest author at the collaborative blog, A Spark of Inspiration!   We are celebrating a new look and name for the blog with FREEBIES and Gift Cards just for you!!  Whoo hoo!  

Thank you Jen, from Teaching in the Tongass  for sending visitors this way! You will want to be sure to stop at each place on the hop to receive a FREEBIE at each blog along the way and follow each one.  Check out the rafflecopter below for your chance to win one of two seriously great prizes!!



Here is your FREEBIE from me!  Click the picture below.

Sample of an ABC Cookie Sheet and Rice Box Activity Pack

Now it's time to head to your next FREEBIE!  Click the picture below!




a Rafflecopter giveaway

Show What You Know!

Use A Show What You Know door and Post It Notes to informally assess student learning

Are you using exit slips?  They are a great way to informally & quickly assess whether students understood your lesson or not.  This is a quick and easy way to manage them!

Informally Assess student learning with Post It Notes

I like use different colors of Post Its for my different groups.  Makes it easier for me to see which groups or grades wrote what.  

I needed a way to do a quick check with my groups to see if they were understanding our word work.  We do our word work the first few minutes and then move on to our reading.  I just hand out Post Its right before they leave and they do a quick check over their word work.  

Use Post It Notes to informally assess student learning

As they walk out the door, the students stick their notes on the door.  Easy for me then to scan the door and see who "got it" and who didn't!  Plus, since I have them do it at the end of the lesson, I am stretching my little strugglers' brains to remember what they learned by building their memory skills.  Something they struggle with a lot.

Using Post It Notes to informally assess student learning

These Show What You Know can really show you who is ready to move on to the next skill and who isn't.  One thing I have found is that the off brand of Post Its do not stay stuck like the name brand does.  


Using Post It Notes to informally assess student learning

To put another spin on exit slips, I have students do a quick check on our wipe off tables.  We were working on cvc words here.  The kids love to write on the tables!!

This has been another Bright Ideas post!  I hope you enjoyed it!  If you are not already following me on Bloglovin, Facebook or Instagram, I would love to have you following me so you can get all the updates on what is happening!



For more Bright Ideas, from my blogger friends, take a look through the topics below.  You are sure to find some more great ideas!


Folktales: Wolves, Pigs & Bears!

Teaching Folktales and Comparing them

We have been extremely busy with our folktale unit!  I have to say this is one of my favorite units to teach,  It brings back wonderful memories of my grandma telling me these stories at bedtime when I was young and would spend the night with her.

Teaching Character Traits with Folktales

Folktales are a great way to teach about character traits.   These stories by James Marshall have great examples of different traits that the students can easily pick out.  

Teaching Character Traits with Folktales

As we find new traits, they go on our character trait anchor charts.

Teaching Character Traits

After we are finished with the book, I put a copy of the cover on the wall and we take some of the character trait cards from the anchor charts and place them on the wall.  Students have learned to then use this wall to help them think of character traits for new books.  It can also help them to compare characters from different books.


Teaching Character Traits with Folktales

We are working hard to be able to prove our answers using evidence from the text.  You can grab this character trait FREEBIE by clicking here if it is something you could use.  You will find other freebies listed on this page too!


In the past we have compared the wolves from The Three Little Pigs and from The Three Little Wolves.  


Folktale Activities

Comparing the pigs is a great way to practice comparing characters too.

Proving Folktales with Evidence From the Text

Another way to use evidence from the text is to prove that a story is a folktale or not.  

Teaching How Characters change with Folktales

The kids can really see how a character changes in a story during this activity using the book The Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig.  Which by the way is a great book!  Boys especially love this book and the twist on the traditional Three Little Pigs!


learning to read multisyllabic closed words

reading multisyllabic closed words


Brand new listing for those of you teaching multisyllabic close syllable words.  These kind of activities are hard to find and this one is a lot of fun!

Goal Lines for RTI

Using goal lines to measure success in RTI

I was recently asked about goal lines for our RTI graphs.  At our school, we plot goal lines and weekly progress to measure whether the interventions are being successful or not.  If you do not assess on a weekly basis, how will you know if the student is going in the right direction or not?  

Using goal lines to measure RTI success

After we have given a universal screening, I use the data to determine who needs to be in RTI Tier II or Tier III.  This is not a guessing game, picking and choosing based on who I think would benefit or not.  I base this on data and how far below grade level each student has fallen.  

Now, for baselines... Let's say I have a first grade student who fell below grade level on the DRA.  I then give him a quick phonics screening to see where he has a deficit.  I take this information coupled with the information I get from the DRA to decide what interventions he would need.

If it is shown that the student need interventions in short vowels, I would then give him what we call a baseline assessment 3 different times.  Same assessment given on three different days.  These assessments are given before interventions begin.  Then I take these 3 scores, average them and plot them on a graph.  This will make the starting point of our goal line.  For Tier II, our school intervenes for 10 weeks.  We like to make 100% as our ending goal.  Plot that on the graph and connect the two plots for a goal line!

After baseline assessments are given and goal lines are drawn, it is officially intervention time.  Each week, we assess to determine how our interventions are working.  We plot the scores each week on the graph for 10 weeks.  If the weekly plots do not steadily increase or move upwards with the goal line, then reflection needs to take place.  The teacher would need to ask him/herself what changes should take place:  different activities, different approach to teaching, or possibly the intervention itself needs to be changed.  

I hope this has helped those of you who are interested in keeping graphs on your RTI students, graphing their weekly progress.  I would be interested to know how many of you keep some kind of graph or record of progress being made in RTI.  Thank you for your help!

If you need help with RTI graphs, you might want to check these Data Binders out:






Vocabulary Walls

Learning new vocabulary

One of the skills my building needed to strengthen according to test scores was vocabulary.  To be specific, vocabulary and synonyms to go with the vocabulary.  One way that I am addressing that weakness is with my vocabulary wall.  For each book, we pull a word or two for our vocabulary to learn.  Then as a visual reminder, I place those vocabulary word cards on a copy of the book cover.  This is an easy way to help students remember what the word means by remembering how it was used in the story or text.  I require that they be able to read the word and be able to tell me a synonym that goes with the word.  When we have a couple of seconds, we can easily go over the wall, reading the words and naming the synonyms.  I am finding that it is helping the students remember vocabulary better this year.

learning new vocabulary and synonynms

In addition to the vocabulary wall, we also fill out a vocabulary sheet so we can dive in a little deeper with the word.    We discuss the definition and what the kids come up with becomes our definition.  I don't want them memorizing a bunch of words that really don't have any meaning to them so the language needs to be from them.  I also like to have different versions  of their answers and let the students write what fits them best.  

learning new vocabulary and synonyms

We were discussing loitering with The Three Little Pigs folktale unit.  The students discussions on loitering were funny!  We finally came around to when the author uses loitering, he is trying to convey to us that the character is probably up to no good!

learning new vocabulary

Of course the discussion on scrumptious got us all hungry for lunch!

learning new vocabulary

We keep our vocabulary sheets in our Interactive Reader's Notebook.  This is the vocabulary section of it.  We have several versions of vocabulary work in the notebook to choose from when using it.

Using interactive reader's notebooks in class

The notebook has been a really great tool this year.  Helps keep everything organized in one place and an easy way of seeing the progression of skills by the students.

How are you working on vocabulary this year?