EF Education First Teachers

Long and Short vowel sounds for Small Stars

A video about helping students improve their awareness of long and short vowel sounds for small stars who are 5 to 6 year olds.

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Comment by Jennifer Michel-McNally on July 29, 2016 at 4:01pm

Hi Avinder - this video shows a good activity to help students practice this difficult area of phonics where the spelling differences create a different vowel sound. You guided the students and then allowed them to try it themselves for more independence. It was difficult to get the students to be confident in their choices since you are asking them to know the spelling difference. Using this activity with the phonemic spelling instead of the orthographic spelling may have helped scaffold this activity. For a discussion in phonology of what constitutes long and short vowel sounds, take a look at Laura's video on the topic.

Comment by Chantelle Farrell on July 22, 2016 at 1:10pm

Avinder, this video was very nicely put together! You clearly understand the difficulty that our younger learners face when dealing with long and short vowel sounds. Like Heather said below, our students know and can hear the difference between the two but maybe can't produce them in isolation. You've built a great rapport with your students and the activity that you chose to model with them clearly shows that you understood their level and wanted them to succeed, even if you had to prompt them a little bit during the freer practice. Great job!

Comment by Heather Kimpton on July 20, 2016 at 7:24pm

Great video, Avinder! Your audio over the video clips is a really good idea - I wish I'd done that in mine instead of talking over all my slides for 2 minutes straight. I have found the same challenges with my Small Stars in class - that their awareness of long/short vowel sounds exists but producing/recognising the sounds independently is very difficult. The students responded well to you giving them support at each stage in the game. Reinforcing the pronunciation with Small Stars through drilling, even though mid activity, was clearly an effective choice. Teachers cannot demand the same level of independent work from Small Stars as with High Flyers. I'll definitely be using this activity for phonics classes in the future. Thanks, Avinder!


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