Phonics Step 4: Begin blending and reading one vowel words and short sentences using Chart 4.
Goals: In step 4, the primary goals are smooth blending AND reading one vowel words and
short sentences without hesitation.
Step 4: How-To Ideas
Now that students have mastered the short vowel sounds, meaning that they read them smoothly and without hesitation, we can help them expand the consonant-vowel [cv] blends that they have been practicing to include consonant-vowel-consonant [cvc] combinations.
For example: Students have been sounding blends of consonant-vowel combinations such as bă. Now we will add a second consonant such as ‘g’ to make a consonant-vowel-consonant blend: bă g. AND notice, this CVC blend is a WORD! Students get really excited when they start reading words--so you should expect some renewed enthusiasm at this point.
As you will see in the examples below, you will also begin introducing short sentences in this step. Whether you are using a phonics program that provides phonics-based readers or you are using books from your library, you will want to be sure that you have coordinated your consonant introductions with the alphabet letters that are used in the books.
For example: Let’s say your phonics reader called, Book C, has pictures with captions that read:
Sam can run. Jill is wet.
You will want to be sure that you have introduced all of the letters in these words BEFORE you give
your student this level of book to read. (s-a-m-c-n-r-u-j-i-l-w-e-t)
The examples that follow are meant to give you an idea of how to implement this step. We hope they will also inspire you to get creative and have some fun!
For more on sight words, see the Dolch Word List information on our Links page.
Word families also teach spelling in a fun way!
This completes our Step 4 ideas. Now let’s move on to Step 5.