Step by Step Instructional Procedure Templates

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        Language Arts
      For Tutors of Grades K-5
               P.A.C.E.E. Project

         Edited by Dr. Ann T. Agnew
Written by Dr. Angela Thames-Martin & Others
     Language Arts
  For Tutors of Grades K-5
             P.A.C.E.E. Project

                          August 2000 edition

         Edited by Dr. Ann T. Agnew

Written by Dr. Angela Thames-Martin & Others

                                       TABLE OF CONTENTS

    Introduction ............................................................................... 5
    Key Features of Step-by-Step ..................................................... 5
    How Teachers Use Step-by-Step ................................................ 6
    How Tutors Use Step-by-Step .................................................... 6
    Areas of Need Defined................................................................ 7
    Contributors................................................................................ 8
    Blank Strategy Templates ......................................................... 9
    Additional Information.............................................................. 12
    Strategy Descriptions ................................................................. 13
    Areas of Need Integration Index............................................... 15

         Sound/Letter Recognition ............................................... 19
         Sight Word Recognition .................................................. 23
         Decoding/Word Analysis................................................. 32
         Reading Rate/Fluency...................................................... 37
         Comprehension................................................................. 40
         Vocabulary Strategies...................................................... 44
         Encoding (Spelling).......................................................... 46
         Sentence Structure ........................................................... 55
         Narrative (Tells a Story).................................................. 60
         Expository (Explains) ...................................................... 66
         Focus/Organization.......................................................... 69
         Writing Conventions........................................................ 73
    Tutor Handbook for Elementary Students.............................. 76

General Information
      Tab Here

              Language Arts Strategies for Tutors of Grades K-5

        Educators in schools everywhere are realizing that tutors can make a critical difference
in students’ achievement levels because tutors provide students with valuable additional one-
on-one or small group instruction. However, it takes time for teachers to convey to tutors
what they need them to do, especially for individual at-risk students with diverse needs. This
poses a dilemma for teachers who want to use tutors effectively.
        Step-by-Step offers a solution. Its easy-to-follow strategies benefit teachers, tutors,
and students. Using Step-by-Step requires little time and effort on the part of teachers, and
yet it provides teachers the assurance that their students are receiving valuable instruction
from tutors. Tutors, in turn, feel comfortable following the time-proven strategies that are
written with the non-teacher in mind. Most importantly, students enjoy rich and motivating
learning experiences that are designed to meet their individual areas of need.

                             KEY FEATURES OF STEP-BY-STEP

   Strategies are organized around common “Areas of Need” for reading and writing

   Strategies are provided for beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels of K-2 and 3-5
   students for each “Area of Need”

   Bold-type allows tutor to quickly review key procedures

   The “Tip Box” feature conveys strategy objectives and trouble-shooting advice

   Tutors are told what to do to assist students if they give an incorrect response

   Strategies are jargon-free and written with the non-teacher in mind

   Materials include only items typically found in classrooms

   Preparation is kept to a minimum

   Each strategy can be used effectively many times with the same student by substituting
   new reading materials or writing topics

   Time-proven strategies motivate students to want to achieve

   Blank strategy templates allow teachers to expand the resource with their own strategies

   This resource book is a “work in progress”; strategies will be periodically developed and
   added to Step-by-Step. Updated versions of the book can be downloaded from a website
   that will be developed during the fall of 2000.
                        HOW TEACHERS USE STEP-BY-STEP

        Step-by-Step helps teachers by minimizing the time it takes to plan the instruction
tutors will implement. With little preparation and few materials, a teacher can quickly provide
tutors with an effective plan from Step-by-Step that will meet the individual needs of any one
of his or her students.

   Using Step-by-Step, teachers can easily make an instructional plan for tutors in a few
minutes by doing the following:

1. Schedule an opportune time for tutor to work with student(s).

2. Select a student or students who could benefit from one-on-one or small group
   instruction with tutor.

3. Choose an “Area of Need” that will address the student’s individual needs.

4. Select an appropriate level strategy from the chosen “Area of Need” (beginning,
   intermediate, advanced, or all).

5. Provide tutor with materials (all typically found in classrooms) and give tutor a few
   minutes to read over the strategy you selected before meeting with student.

6. Add to the collection of strategies by writing down strategies that you know work well
   with your student group. Use the blank strategy templates provided on pages 9-11 of this

                         HOW TUTORS USE STEP-BY-STEP

    Step-by-Step helps tutors increase the quality of instruction they provide to students. The
format and explanation make each strategy easy to understand and follow. These features
increase the tutor’s confidence while decreasing any anxiety.

   Using Step-by-Step, tutors can be ready to work with a student in just a few minutes by
doing the following:

1. The teacher will assign you a strategy to use from Step-by-Step that meets the
   individual needs of the child with whom you will be working.

2. Read the strategy before you meet with the student.

3. Review the procedures by rereading the words in bold type.

4. Gather materials from the teacher.

5. Begin instructing and making a real difference in a child’s education.

                                AREAS OF NEED DEFINED

         The strategies in Step-by-Step are designed to meet the “Areas of Need” defined

Sound/Letter Recognition
       The first thing children learn about reading is that letters of the alphabet represent
sounds. Learning letter/sound relationships involves phonics. Soon after, students learn that
consonant letters can sometimes have more than one sound (e.g., c in city and cat) and that
vowels (a,e,i,o,u) can represent long or short sounds (e.g., i in bit vs. bite) depending on
where other letters are in a word. Children also learn that when some letters are placed side
by side they make a new sound (e.g., c and h in champ).

Sight Word Recognition
       If we had to sound out every word we came across when reading, it would prove to be
a very slow process. Instead, effective readers learn to recognize many words instantly by
“sight” instead of having to sound them out. Students become more effective readers when
they learn to recognize frequently used words by sight (e.g., the, them, her, when, like). Most
students pick up sight words if they have the opportunity to read a lot. Some students may
need additional help learning such words through drill and practice.

Decoding/Word Analysis
       Readers figure out what an unknown word is by decoding or analyzing the word. This
is accomplished by using clues found around the unknown word (context clues), looking for
spelling patterns, or sounding out the word phonetically. Take for example the sentence, “The
boy is playing with the ball.” If a reader doesn’t know the word “playing”, but recognizes the
other words in the sentence, he might deduce that the word is probably playing after only
sounding out the first two letters because “playing” is something typically done with a ball.

Reading Rate/Fluency
       Reading rate is how quickly a student can read while making few errors. When
students increase their reading rate, their fluency often improves. Fluency describes a
student’s ability to read with a natural flow of words, as if she were talking. Being able to
fluently read text improves students’ abilities to comprehend what they read.

       Comprehending text means that the student understands the message and meaning of
the text.

Vocabulary Strategies
        If a student has a good vocabulary, it means he possesses knowledge of many word
meanings. When a reader knows what a word means, it helps him better comprehend what is
read. Some strategies that help students develop better vocabularies include interactive read
alouds, hands-on learning experiences, reading content area books (science, social studies,
etc.), and simply reading a lot.

Encoding (Spelling)
       Encoding means to write a word in a way so that other people can read it. Although
English is based on a system of phonics, there are many rules and exceptions to rules that
children need in order to learn to be good spellers.

Sentence Structure
      Children need to be aware that the words in sentences must be arranged so that they
convey a clear and complete thought.

Narrative Writing
     Children learn to tell the reader a story through narrative writing.

Expository Writing
     Children learn to explain something to the reader through expository writing.

       Children need to learn that good writing is focused and organized. When a writer stays
focused on a main idea and conveys supporting details it makes the meaning of the writing
easier for the reader to understand.

       Conventions of language are simply the rules of a written language. This includes
things like grammar, spelling, punctuation, and writing style. Children need to learn writing
conventions so they can communicate their ideas to others clearly.

                        CONTRIBUTORS TO STEP-BY-STEP

       The production of Step-By-Step was funded by the Panhandle Area Center for
Educational Enhancement (P.A.C.E.E). The idea for this book came about when northwest
Florida educators working in schools-at-risk voiced a need for using tutors more effectively.
Peggy Pilcher, Volunteer and Business Partner Coordinator for Escambia County, Dr. Janet
Pilcher, P.A.C.E.E. Project Co-director, Kim Daughdrill, P.A.C.E.E. Training Coordinator, Dr.
Angela Thames-Martin, Step-by-Step author, and Dr. Ann T. Agnew, Step-by-Step editor, were
instrumental in helping develop the vision for this project.
       The book Step-by-Step was written by Dr. Angela Thames-Martin, Visiting Instructor in
the Division of Teacher Education at the University of West Florida. The strategies were
developed by Martin and other master teachers from the Pensacola area (credited by name on
individual strategies). Dr. Ann T. Agnew, Associate Professor in the Division of Teacher
Education at the University of West Florida and an expert in the field of language arts
instruction edited the book. Peggy Pilcher compiled the information located in the appendix
entitled “Tutor Handbook for Elementary Students” for those who wish to improve or begin a
tutoring program.

Strategy Template: Use this template to add your own strategies to your personal copy of this book and/or to submit the
strategies you develop for the publishers to consider for future editions of this resource. Mail submissions to: P.A.C.E.E.
Office/110000University Parkway/ Pensacola, Florida 32514 /Attn: Step-by-Step

                                              (Circle One) K-2 or 3-5
       (Place graphic here)                   (Circle One) Rdg. Or Wrtg
                                              AIP Area of Need: ________________

                                                        Title: “____________”
                                                                          Developed (date)_______ by __________________________

What you’ll need:

What to do:

                                                         TIP BOX

Strategy Template: Use this template to add your own strategies to your personal copy of this book and/or to submit the
strategies you develop for the publishers to consider for future editions of this resource. Mail submissions to: P.A.C.E.E.
Office/110000University Parkway/ Pensacola, Florida 32514 /Attn: Step-by-Step

                                              (Circle One) K-2 or 3-5
       (Place graphic here)                   (Circle One) Rdg. Or Wrtg
                                              AIP Area of Need: ________________

                                                        Title: “____________”
                                                                          Developed (date)_______ by __________________________

What you’ll need:

What to do:

                                                         TIP BOX

Strategy Template: Use this template to add your own strategies to your personal copy of this book and/or to submit the
strategies you develop for the publishers to consider for future editions of this resource. Mail submissions to: P.A.C.E.E.
Office/110000University Parkway/ Pensacola, Florida 32514 /Attn: Step-by-Step

                                              (Circle One) K-2 or 3-5
       (Place graphic here)                   (Circle One) Rdg. Or Wrtg
                                              AIP Area of Need: ________________

                                                        Title: “____________”
                                                                          Developed (date)_______ by __________________________

What you’ll need:

What to do:

                                                         TIP BOX

        Step-by-Step will be available online to anyone interested in downloading it as a pdf file
in the fall of 2000. You may contact the P.A.C.E.E. office for additional information regarding
this resource at (850) 474-2700 or via the following website address:

                        Step-by-Step Strategy Descriptions
        Title              Level
                         Sound/Letter Recognition
I Spy                      K-2      Develops phonemic and language awareness
Sound Shopping Spree       K-2      Sounding out words for pictures

Going on an Adventure      K-2      Brainstorming words that begin with the
                                    same sound
                          Sight Word Recognition
Finders Keepers            K-2      Recognizing one-to-one word
Look at Me                 K-2      Labeling pictures
Pack a Word                K-2      Recognition of common object words and
                                    development of critical thinking skills
Catch a Match Game         3-5      Card game where students match word
                                    pairs around a vocabulary theme
                          Decoding/Word Analysis
Make-a-Word Magic          K-2      Putting different beginning sounds on a
                                    word family to create rhyming words
Hide & Seek Sound-it-      K-2      Sounding out letter clues to discover object
out                                 hidden
Word Meets Word            K-2      Creating compound words
                           Reading Rate/Fluency
Copycat                    K-2      Echo reading
Ready Set Read!            3-5      Timed repeated readings
In the Mind’s Eye          K-2      Representing what is heard via a drawing
It’s Story Time!           K-2      Interactive read-aloud
Funny Pages                3-5      Sequencing cut-apart comic strips
                           Vocabulary Strategies
Dino-Thesaurus Rex         3-5      Substituting overused words with synonyms
                                    from thesaurus

                        Step-by-Step Strategy Descriptions
        Title              Level
                            Encoding (Spelling)
What’s for Dinner?         K-2    Using invented spelling to label food items
Real or Real Silly?        K-2    Trying out beginning letters to make words
                                  with common word endings
Make I Take Your           3-5    Reading a menu to write a food order
Order Please?
Spelling Detective         3-5    Learning a study strategy for spelling words
                            Sentence Structure
Sentence Fix-Up            3-5    Putting together sentence puzzles
Speed Writing              3-5    Developing writing fluency by recording
                                  chunks of spoken words
Sentence Salon             3-5    Learning to vary sentence length when
                          Narrative (Tells a Story)
Tri-Fold Books             K-2    Recalling an event and recording it
                                  sequentially in a booklet
Wish You Were Here!        3-5    Writing about an event on a postcard
I’m a Poet and I Know      3-5    Creating a limerick
In the News                3-5    Interviewing a peer, recording answers, and
                                  writing a biographical story
                           Expository (Explains)
Alien—How Do You           K-2    Explaining how to do a task to an “alien”
Pen Pals                   3-5    Dialogue journaling between tutor and
Do I See What You          3-5    Adding details to writing to ensure readers
See?                              accurately interpret your personal message
Venn Diagrams              3-5    Using a Venn diagram to compare and
                                  contrast topics before writing
                            Writing Conventions
Eagle’s Eye                3-5    Critiquing sentences with convention

                                                   Areas of Need Integration Index
                                                              READING                                                                           WRITING
          STRATEGY TITLES                                    STRATEGIES                                                                        STRATEGIES

Location of strategies indicated by .


                                                                        Reading Rate/

                                                                                                                                                (Tells a Story)








                                                        Sight Word

Integration of skills indicated by   .

Alien How Do You Do?

Catch the Match Game


Dino-Thesaurus Rex

Do You See What I See?

Eagle’s Eye

Finders Keepers

Funny Pages

Going on an Adventure
                                                              READING                                                                           WRITING
          STRATEGY TITLES                                    STRATEGIES                                                                        STRATEGIES
Location of strategies indicated by .


                                                                        Reading Rate/

                                                                                                                                                (Tells a Story)








                                                        Sight Word

Integration of skills indicated by   .

Hide & Seek Sound-It-Out

I Spy

I’m a Poet and I Know It

In the Mind’s Eye

In the News

It’s Story Time!

Look At Me

Make-a-Word Magic

May I Take Your Order Please?

                                                              READING                                                                           WRITING
           STRATEGY TITLES                                   STRATEGIES                                                                        STRATEGIES

Location of strategies indicated by .


                                                                        Reading Rate/

                                                                                                                                                (Tells a Story)








                                                        Sight Word

Integration of skills indicated by   .

Pack a Word

Pen Pals

Ready Set Read!

Real or Real Silly?

Sentence Fix-Up

Sentence Salon

Sound Shopping Spree

Speed Writing

Spelling Detective

                                                                                  Tri-fold Books

                                                                  Venn Diagrams

     Word Meets Word
                                             What’s For Dinner?

                       Wish You Were Here!
                                                                                                                                                                                       STRATEGY TITLES

                                                                                                          Integration of skills indicated by
                                                                                                                                               Location of strategies indicated by .

                                                                                                   Sight Word

                                                                                                   Reading Rate/



                                                                                                   (Tells a Story)


Sound/Letter Recognition
         Tab Here

                                 K-2 Reading. Beginning Level
                                 AIP Area of Need: Sound/Letter Recognition

                                                       “I Spy”
                                 Time Needed: 15 min.                  Indv. Or Small Group

                                                                       Developed 6/00 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
   A room with a variety of things to “spy”!

What to do:
   Tell student(s) you are going to play a different but fun version of “I Spy”.
   Have one player think of the name of an object in the room that all players can see
   (e.g., chalk).
   Have that person say the beginning sound of the word (e.g., /ch/) by saying, “I spy
   something that begins with the sound ____.”.
   All other players use the clue of the beginning sound to guess the object that
   person is spying (e.g., Chair? Chain? Children?).
        Incorrect Response: If a player guesses a word that does not begin with the stated
   beginning sound (e.g., the word jellybean when given the beginning sound clue /ch/) tell
   them to listen closely to you saying both the beginning sound clue and the word guessed,
   emphasizing the beginning sound of their word. Explain how the two sounds are different.
   Let the player who guessed the object correctly take the next turn or take turns so all get
   equal “spying” time.
   The next player begins the game again by thinking of the name of a different object
   (e.g., globe) and saying the beginning sound of the word (e.g., /g/).

                                            TIP BOX
This simple strategy helps beginning readers develop phonemic and language awareness. It is simple
to use and is a real favorite with young children.

                                        K-2 Reading: Intermediate Level
                                        AIP Area of Need: Sound/Letter Recognition

                                              “Sound Shopping Spree”
                                        Time Needed: 20-30 min.              Individual or Small Group

                                                                                  Developed 8/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

   What you’ll need:
           Colorful magazines or catalogs with pictures of objects children should recognize
           A piece of paper and a marker

   What to do:
       Have the student choose a magazine or catalog that appeals to them. Invite him/her to
       go on a make-believe shopping trip.
       Demonstrate to the student how to do the activity by first taking a turn yourself.
       Ask the student to close his/her eyes and point to the page. Tell student to open
       his/her eyes and tell you what he/she is going to buy.
               Incorrect Response: If student cannot name the object or misnames the object, tell
               him/her what the object is and elaborate some on how the object is used. For
               example, “This is a xylophone. It is a musical instrument. You hit the bars with a
               stick to play a tune or song.”
       Next, say the object word very slowly. Ask the student what sound (not letter)
       he/she hears first.
           ☺ Correct Response: Write down the letter on the piece of paper and say, “Yes,
              the first sound you hear in the word hat is /h/” (say the sound, not the letter).
              Incorrect Response: If student cannot identify the first sound, sound out the word
              again and give student the answer, explaining how you figured it out.
       Then ask, “What’s the next sound you hear?” Again, sound out the word slowly,
       emphasizing the second letter. When the student identifies the sound, write it down on
       the piece of paper too. Do this until all letters in the word are written down.
       Review by pointing under each letter as you sound out the word and then say the word
       again quickly as you slide your finger quickly under the word from left to right. Have the
       student copy what you did by sounding out each letter slowly and then saying the word
       the fast way.
       Begin the process again by having student close his/her eyes to select a new object.

                                                    TIP BOX
If a sound is not heard in a word, such as the letter “a” in the word “boat”, just write the letter smaller
than the other letters with minimal explanation. If a child chooses an object with an unusual spelling
or a spelling that might confuse a beginning reader, such as the word “photo,” just say the word and
talk about how the object is used, then ask student to pick another object OR allow student to spell
such a word purely phonetically (e.g. “foto” for “photo”). Ask the teacher which option is most
appropriate for the student with whom you are working.

                                   K-2 Reading: Advanced Level
                                   AIP Area of Need: Sound/Letter Recognition

                                        “Going on an Adventure”
                                   Time Needed: 15 min.                     Small Group

                                                                                Developed 6/00 by Angela Thames-Martin

   What you’ll need:
           Globe or map
           Imagination and a good memory!

   What to do:
       To begin, the first player should search a map or globe for an adventure
       While pointing to the correct location on the map the first player should announce
       to the group that he is going on an adventure to the place he is pointing to and stating one
       object that he will take with him that starts with the same letter as the place name (e.g.,
       “I am going on an adventure to Pensacola [while pointing to Pensacola on a map]
       and I am taking a parrot.”).
       The other players take turns adding to the list of objects being taken on the
       adventure by thinking of another object that starts with that letter (e.g., “I am going on
       an adventure to Pensacola and I am taking a parrot and a pickle.”). Each player
       should point to the place on the map as they say the adventure destination.
       The next player takes a turn doing the same thing (e.g., “I am going on an adventure to
       Pensacola and I am taking a parrot, a pickle, and a piano.”).
           Incorrect Response: A player is “out” if…
              he either cannot find the location on the map
              makes a mistake in remembering the list of objects being taken
              cannot think of another word that starts with the given letter
       Play ends when only one player is left playing.
       Begin a new game by having one player select a new adventure destination.

                                                     TIP BOX
This is an alliteration game. Alliteration is the repetition of the beginning consonant sounds of words.
This game offers tutors a strategy to help young children develop phonemic and language awareness
while integrating geography in a fun way.

Sight Word Recognition
        Tab Here

                                             K-2 Reading: Beginning Level
                                             AIP Area of Need: Sight Word Recognition

                                                            “Finders Keepers”
                                             Time Needed: 25 min.                              Individual Activity

                                                                     Developed 10/99 by Cynthia Watson and Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
        Two enlarged photocopies of a familiar poem or song

What to do:
   Before meeting with student, select a simple short poem or song familiar to most
   children (e.g., “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”, “Miss Mary Mack”, “Row, Row, Row Your
   Boat”, “Mary Had a Little Lamb”, “This Little Piggie”, etc.). Make two photocopies of
   the text. Try to enlarge the type as much as possible. Cut out beginning sight
   words (words so common it makes more sense to learn them by sight instead of sounding
   them out) from the second copy. For example, if you were using “Twinkle, Twinkle,
   Little Star” you might cut out the words little, star, I, you, are, up, so, high, like, the, sky.
   Read the poem to student using lots of expression. Explain any words that student
   might not understand. Talk about the meaning of the poem with the student.
   Read poem again to student. Point under each word as you say it.
   Read poem a third time. Have student “read” along with you as you point under
   each word again.
   Introduce game by asking student if she has ever heard the expression, “Finders
   keepers, losers weepers.” Explain that this means if you find something someone else lost
   and you can’t figure out who it belongs to or no one claims it after a reasonable time, you
   can keep it.
   Tell student they get to play a game with you called “Finders Keepers” using the poem or
   song she just read. Explain that you will give her a small word card (the one you cut
   out from second copy) and she has to “find” it (point to it) in the poem or song (the
   first copy of poem) by the time you count to ten (softly). If she does it within ten
   seconds, she gets to “keep” the word. It is fine if the student needs to hold the word
   card up against the text to help them match it to the appropriate word. If she doesn’t find
   it within ten seconds, it means “losers weepers” (you keep the word card). Whenever all
   “cards” have been played, the winner is the person with the most cards.
         Incorrect Response: If the student is having trouble finding words, make sure you help her succeed
         by doing things like giving hints of which sentence the word can be found or counting to ten
         more slowly to give student additional time. In other words, make sure the student “wins”.

                                                        TIP BOX
This strategy helps beginning readers develop their ability to recognize words instantly by sight because it requires them to
visually discriminate between words. If you use a familiar song or poem, even students who cannot really read yet, can
develop prerequisite concepts (e.g., concept of word, discrimination skills) necessary to sight read.

Example of an appropriate text to use with “Finders Keepers”:

Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are.

Up above the world so high,
Like a diamond in the sky.

Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are.

                                          K-2 Reading: Intermediate Level
                                          AIP Area of Need: Sight Word Recognition

                                                           “Look at Me”
                                          Time Needed: 20 min.                     Individual Activity

                                                                              Developed 8/99 by Elizabeth Persons

What you’ll need:
       2 pieces of paper and pencil and scissors
       Optional- markers or crayons

What to do:
    Begin by having student draw a picture of himself/herself.
    Ask student to point to specific body parts. For example, “Where is your head?”
    Write the word “head” and draw a line from the word to the head. Sound out the
    word as you write each letter and say the word again when you finish writing it.
    Repeat this procedure by labeling other body parts such as eyes, nose, mouth, arms,
    legs, feet, hands, hair, etc.
    Go back and point to the words asking the student to read them to you.
            Incorrect Response: If the student says the wrong word, help him/her sound it out.
            For example, if he/she says “face” for “head”, call his/her attention to the beginning
            sound /h/. Say “/h/…” (pause and then wait for them to say “head”).
    Put a piece of paper over the drawing, lightly trace around the body outline so
    that the picture is covered up but not the word labels. Cut out this masking
    shape and put it over the drawing of the body. Now, ask student to see if he/she
    can read the words a second time without the picture clues. Again, help the
    student sound out any words he/she doesn’t recognize by sight.
    If you have additional time, extend this activity by labeling clothes such as skirt,
    pants, shirt, shoes, socks, hat, bow, etc. and following the same procedure given above. If
    you do this activity with the same student on a later date, have student draw and label
    other common objects (e.g., house, tree, bird, bicycle, car, etc.)
    End session by giving student his/her labeled picture of body parts and cut out
    masking shape to use at home as a study-aid. Student can self-test his/her ability to
    recognize sight words using the labeled picture and mask.

                                              TIP BOX

The more detailed the drawing, the more words you have to work with. If the student does not draw a
very detailed picture, encourage by asking questions such as, “Where are your ears, fingers, etc?” or
you could use a photo or printed picture of an object instead.

                                             K-2 Reading: Advanced Level
                                             AIP Area of Need: Sight Word Recognition

                                                              “Pack a Word”
                                             Time Needed: 20- 30 min.                    Indv. Or Small Group

                                                                   Developed 10/99 by Tanya Kane and Angela Thames-Martin

   What you’ll need:
           Large piece of drawing paper with sketch of a suitcase and list of words (see next pages)
           1 pr. scissors and a marker
           Encyclopedia set

   What to do:
       Before the lesson, cut apart the words on the attached page. Make sure you make
       several blank word cards that student may use later in the lesson.
       Ask student if he knows of a place he would like to visit on a vacation.
       ☺   Familiar place named Talk about the climate of that place and what kinds of activities the student
           would wish to do while he was there.
           Unfamiliar place named: Look it up in an Encyclopedia so you can discuss climate and things he
           might do there on a visit.
           Not able to name a place: Suggest several places you think might be exciting to visit and let him
           choose one. Look up the location in an Encyclopedia and talk about climate and things he might do if
           he visited there.
       Write the chosen destination at the top of the suitcase with marker.
       Pretend you are going to help student pack his suitcase for his trip. One by one,
       show him a word card. Have student read the word. Help him sound out any words
       he has difficulty with. Talk about what the item is used for. Discuss why the item
       might or might not be appropriate (e.g., a heavy jacket would not be needed for a trip
       to a hot climate).
       If the student decides to take an appropriate item (e.g., shorts for a trip to Hawaii
       or a toothbrush which is appropriate for any trip), have him place the word card inside
       the suitcase. If student chooses an inappropriate item, discuss why the choice may not
       be appropriate. If student correctly decides an item is not appropriate for his chosen trip
       (e.g., snow skis for a trip to Disney World), he should place the word card on the drawing
       paper outside of the suitcase drawing. In any of the above cases, have the student
       articulate why an item is or is not an appropriate choice.
       Allow the student to write on the blank cards any items he thinks he will
       specifically need on his chosen trip that were not included in the list (e.g.,
       baseball cap for a trip to watch the Atlanta Braves). Let him place those in the suitcase as
       Ask student to reread words he “packed” in the suitcase as he glues them down.
       You can use this strategy again with same student on another day by choosing a new trip destination or
       developing a word list of your own. Be sure to review the words frequently.
                                                   TIP BOX
To help students develop critical thinking skills you can ask them to choose only a limited number of
items from the words they placed inside the suitcase. This will require them to rationally choose
between items by prioritizing their importance for their trip.
Name ____________________

I am going on a trip to _____________________.
I will pack the following items in my suitcase:

I will not pack the following things for this trip:

Cut apart the following word cards to use with the “Pack a Word” strategy:

    shorts                   hairbrush                 toothbrush

      shirt                  swimsuit                       pants

     dress                      shoes                       socks

 underwear                        coat                    mittens

 sunglasses                    camera                   good book

 snow skis                   sunscreen                heavy jacket

light jacket                   money                     shampoo

 bug spray

                                3-5 Reading: All Levels
                                AIP Area of Need: Sight Word Recognition

                                       “Catch a Match Game”
                                Time Needed: 20 min.                     Small Group

                                                                           Developed 6/00 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
     Two identical sets of cards with sight, spelling, or vocabulary words written on them
     (Minimum of 12 cards per set is recommended; a set of vocabulary cards on a human
     body theme is provided on the next page)

What to do:
   Make two identical sets of word cards.
  You will play “Catch a Match Game” along with 2 to 3 students.
  Mix cards up and deal out an equal number of cards to each player including
  Tell students how to play the game:
      Each player puts their stack of cards face down in front of them.
      All at the same time each player turns top card face up and places it next to their
      Players look at each other’s card to see if there are any matches between all of the
      cards turned up.
      If a match is seen, the first person to say the word aloud (e.g., “skeleton!”)
      gets to keep the matching word cards. A player keeps matches in a separate pile
      away from the playing area.
      If there is no match seen, play resumes by all players turning over another card.
      If a player gets to the end of their face-down stack before the game ends, she is to
      turn the face up stack over and then play can continue.
      Play is over when there are no more cards in any player’s stack or only one player has
      cards in their stack (in this case the player can count the matches left in her own
      The player who has the most matches at the end of the game wins.
  You can use this strategy again with the same group of students by creating new sets of
  word cards.

                                              TIP BOX
   This strategy allows students to practice visual discrimination skills and reinforces sight
   word and vocabulary word knowledge.

Enlarge this page with a photocopier and print on card stock. Cut apart cards to play
“Catch a Match Game” using vocabulary words appropriate for a human body theme.

     body                 body              skeleton             skeleton

nervous system       nervous system
                                            stomach              stomach

     brain                brain                lungs                lungs

spinal cord spinal cord                        heart                heart

   reflexes             reflexes               liver                liver

 ligaments            ligaments             digestion            digestion

   bladder              bladder               tongue               tongue

    muscle              muscle              intestines           intestines

Decoding/Word Analysis
        Tab Here

                                      K-2 Reading: Beginning Level
                                      AIP Area of Need: Decoding/Word Analysis

                                               “Make-a-Word Magic”
                                      Time Needed: 15 min.                         Indv. Or Small Group

                                                                               Developed 6/00 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
      Small chart of the alphabet
      Chalkboard and 2 colors of chalk or erasable board and 2 colors of erasable pens

What to do:
      Select 1 of the 37 word families most frequently found in our language listed below:
      ack     ail      ain     ake     ale     ame an           ank     ap       ash      at     ate
      aw      ay       eat     ell     est     ice     ick      ide     ight    ill       in     ine
      ing     ink      ip      ir      ock     oke     op       ore     or      uck       ug     ump unk
  Write the word family (e.g., ack) selected on the chalkboard with one color of chalk. This will not be
  erased during session. You will use chalk of another color to build words off of this “word base” (e.g., ack).
  Tell student that together you are going to play a game called “Make-a-Word Magic” where
  you add beginning sounds to what is written on the chalkboard to make new words.
  Begin by saying a word aloud (e.g., hack) that can be made using the word base
  and asking student, “What do we need to do to make the word hack?” Emphasize
  the beginning sound (in this example /h/) as you say the word again.
      ☺ Correct Response: Write or have the student write the letter h before ack
          in chalk of another color and say, “Yes, you add the letter h before ack and like
          magic you made the new word hack.”
          Incorrect Response: Refer to alphabet chart and say, “Let’s look through our
          alphabet chart to see which consonant letter (all letters except a, e, i, o, u) when
          added to ack will make the word hack.” Go through the consonants beginning
          with b and sounding out each “word” (e.g., back, cack, dack, fack, gack, …)
          until you get to the letter needed (in this example h). Then say, “This letter h
          sounds right doesn’t it? So, let’s add the letter h before ack and like magic we
          have made the new word hack.”
  Erase the letter you just added to the word base (e.g., erase h from hack).
  Say a different word aloud that can be made using the same word base (e.g.,
  back). Go through the same steps above to add the letter b to ack, then erase b, say a
  new word aloud (e.g., rack) and go through the steps again. Do this until all words are
  exhausted using the selected word base.
  End session or begin again by selecting a new word base from the 37 listed above.

                                                 TIP BOX
Teachers refer to this strategy as “word study”. This strategy involves looking carefully at how words
are put together, learning sound-letter relationships useful for reading and writing words, and building
new words from known words or word parts.

                                      K-2 Reading: Intermediate Level
                                      AIP Area of Need: Decoding/Word Analysis

                                        “Hide & Seek Sound-it-out”
                                      Time Needed: 10-20 min.                Indv. Or Small Group

                                                                     Developed 9/99 by Angela Thames-Martin
 What you’ll need:
         Interesting object(s) to hide and a hiding place nearby
         Paper and pencil

 What to do:
     Before meeting with the student, find an interesting object to share (e.g., cocoon,
     prism, snake skin, seashell, etc.). Make sure the name of the object is not too difficult or
     unusual to spell.
     Hide the object near to the place where you will be working with student.
     Ask student if he/she has ever played the game, “Hide and Seek”. Tell student you will
     be playing a game like “Hide and Seek” called, “Hide and Seek Sound-it-out”.
     However, explain that instead of trying to find you, he/she will try to find an object
     that you have hidden in the room. The student gets to search for the object once
     he/she has correctly guessed what the object is, using clues you give them.
     An example of how this game might be played follows: Write the first letter of the
     word for the object on a sheet of paper. For instance, if the object is a “prism”, you would
     write a p on the paper. Ask student to sound out the letter and then guess what the
     object might be. The student says. “/p/” and guesses a word that begins with p such as a
     “peanut”. You say, “Yes, that letter does make a /p/ sound and the word ‘peanut’ does
     start with that sound, let’s see if your guess is right when I give you the next letter. The
     next letter is r (write r). Sound these two letters out together. Yes, that’s right, /pr/.
     Does the word ‘peanut’ start with the sounds /pr/? No- so take another guess. Think of a
     word that starts with the sounds /pr/. Your guess is ‘prize’? That’s a good guess, you
     might be right. Let’s see if what I hid was a prize by me giving you the next letter, which
     is i. Hey it could be a ‘prize’, but we don’t know for sure, because the vowel i might be
     short instead of long. I’ll give you the next letter- s. That probably means it’s a short i.
     So, sound out your clues, p-r-i-s…       What could that be? You say it’s a “prism? If the
     object is a ‘prism’ what will be your next letter? An m? Okay, I’ll write the next letter
     (write m). You’re right, it is a prism! Now you can go and find it!”
     Give “hot” and “warm” clues to help student find the object. Once the student finds
     the object, examine it closely together. Explain what it is, how it’s used, where it’s
     found, etc. to help student develop his/her vocabulary and understanding of objects in
     our world.

                                                TIP BOX
This motivating strategy teaches students to use deductive reasoning when trying to figure out a word
they do not recognize by sight.

                                       K-2 Reading: Advanced Level
                                       AIP Area of Need: Decoding/Word Analysis

                                                     “Word Meets Word”
                                       Time Needed: 15 min.               Individual or Small Group

                                                                         Developed 8/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
    Photocopy and then cut apart the compound word cards on attached page

What to do:
    Shake the student’s hand. Explain that sometimes when people meet each other they
    do this as a way of saying “hello”. Use this explanation as an analogy for compound words
    by saying, “Sometimes two different words meet just like two different people
    meet. When two different words are put together to make one word they are
    called compound words because they are joined together temporarily just like
    two people shaking hands.”
    Give the student an example using the cards “base” and “ball.” Say, “This word
    says ‘base’ and this word says ‘ball’. (Act like you are talking to the cards) ‘Base’ I
    would like for you to meet ‘ball’. Let’s watch them shake hands (put two cards
    together). Look, now the two words put together make one new word that says
    ‘baseball’. Now watch what happens when they stop shaking hands (move two cards
    apart). Now they are two different words again ‘base’ and ‘ball’. (Put two words
    together again) baseball, (pull them apart again) base and ball. See how this works?”
    “Let’s introduce more words so they can shake hands and become compound

                      base + ball= baseball
    words like we did with ‘base’ and ‘ball’.” Ask student to read each word in each pair
    separately then put them together to “shake hands.” Ask student to read the new
    compound word. Have the student pull words apart and read the words separately again.
    Go through this procedure for all the word pairs.
    Give student the opportunity to think of additional compound words if he/she
    can. Use blank cards to record them.
    To have a little fun, try creating nonsense words like ‘sunball’ or ‘popdog’ at the
    end of the session. Explain that not all words can be put together to make a new word
    that makes sense.
    You can use this strategy again with the same student by developing new compound word
                                            TIP BOX
Hearing and saying the parts of words helps prepare children to learn to read. Part of what it takes to
analyze words is to recognize words within a word, as is the case with compound words that combine
two words to make one.

Compound word cards to be cut apart for “Word Meets Word” activity:

  base ball                                book shelf
 tooth brush                                foot ball
  play ground                              milk shake
   pop corn                               skate board
   sun shine                                 hot dog
 motor cycle                              grand mother
  rain drop                                  ear ring

Reading Rate/Fluency
       Tab Here

                                       K-2 Reading: All Levels
                                       AIP Area of Need: Reading Rate/Fluency

                                       Time Needed: 20- 30 min.                   Individual Activity

                                                                          Developed 9/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
       A story or poem written on or slightly above the student’s reading level

What to do:
    Tell student you are going to play the game, “Copycat.”
    Explain how to play the game. Say, “I will read a sentence from the book and then
    you will copy what I read and how I read it. We will both touch under each word as we
    say it.”
    Begin with a simple example: Read a sentence while pointing under each word
    as you say it out loud. Pronounce words very clearly. Now ask the student to copy
    what you did, pointing under each word as he/she says it out loud.
        Incorrect Response: Read the sentence again and let the student try again or break
    the sentence or poem up into smaller phrases.
    Read in a lively manner by using lots of expression when you read. Encourage the
    student to mimic your expression when reading. For example, if you read, “The
    giant yelled, Fe, Fi, Fo, Fum!”, read it loudly and angrily as if you were the giant. Or if you
    read a question, end the sentence in a higher tone as if you were really asking a question.
    Repeat this procedure until a poem or short story is completed.
    To extend this activity, try reversing roles. Encourage student to read with lots of
    expression and you copy her/him. This playful strategy involving the reversal of roles
    should really motivate the student to use expression when reading.

                                               TIP BOX
This strategy is what teachers technically call echo reading. Echo reading helps students develop a
natural voice while reading because they can model how the sentence should sound from the adult
reader. In addition, echo reading motivates beginning readers as they experience how nice it feels to
read fluently. Students may also pick up new sight words and how to use cues in sentences to aid
comprehension through echo reading.

                                      3-5 Reading: All Levels
                                      AIP Area of Need: Reading Rate/Fluency

                                                “Ready, Set, Read!”
                                      Time Needed: 15 min.                    Individual Activity

                                                                            Developed 8/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

 What you’ll need:
        A reading passage that is relatively easy for the student to read
        A stopwatch or clock with a second hand

 What to do:
     Count the words in the passage you selected before meeting with the student.
     Say to student: “Have you ever run in a race?” “Have you ever seen athletes on television
     running in a race?” “Did you notice that they do warm-up excercises before they run to
     get their muscles stretched out?” “Today you get to run a reading race, but first I
     am going to help you do some ‘warm-up’ exercises before you start so you can
     read as fast as you can in the race.” Have student first read the text slowly and
     carefully. Do NOT time during this first reading.
            Incorrect Response: If student makes a mistake, help him correct it. Keep track
         of any words the student struggled with and review those words afterwards,
         giving hints on how to sound the words out or recognize them by sight.
     Now tell the student he is ready to run the reading race. Tell student you are going to
     time him to see how many words he can read correctly per minute so he should
     read as quickly and as accurately as possible.
     Announce, “Ready, Set, Read!” and time the student (in seconds) reading the
     entire text.
        Incorrect Response: If student makes a mistake, help him correct it and tell him
     to move on (review those words missed again after the reading).
         To calculate the number of words read per minute:
         1. Subtract the number of words they missed from the total number of words in the
             selected text.
         2. Divide that number by the number of seconds it took the student to read the text.
         3. Multiplly that number by 60 to determine “words per minute”.
     Challenge the student to beat his own record over a period of 5 days by reading
     the exact same text.
     After five timed readings of the same text, move on to a new text selection
     following the steps above.

                                                  TIP BOX
  This activita helps the chdevelop help students develop child develop fluency (reading quickly
This strategy, easy repeated readings,This activity helps the fluency (reading quickly and with ease)
  and leads to improved leads to improving comprehension. This activity helps the child develop
which with ease) which comprehension. Students should only compete against themselves during this
  fluency (reading any competition ease) which between improving
activity; discourage quickly and withor comparison leads to students because this tends to discourage
struggling students with less ability. This strategy can have a dramatic impact on student learning, if
students have consistent opportunities of reading the same texts over 5 day periods..
    Tab Here

                                   K-2 Reading: Beginning Level
                                   AIP Area of Need: Comprehension

                                               “In the Mind’s Eye”
                                   Time Needed: 20-30 min.                       Indv. or Small Group

                                                                               Developed 10/99 by Elizabeth Persons

What you’ll need:
     a highly descriptive poem (see “Willie MacGurkle example below)
     Paper and crayons

What to do:
  This strategy can be done with any highly descriptive poem. “Willie MacGurkle” serves as
  a fine example of how you might implement this strategy.
  Read poem to students. See example of an appropriate poem below.
  Ask students questions to check and improve their comprehension. Help explain
  anything they don’t understand (e.g., what a limp is). Some examples of appropriate
  questions for the “Willie MacGurkle” poem include, “How did Willie walk? (with a limp) Can
  you show me how to walk with a limp? What color was his nose? (purple) Can you show
  me a purple crayon on the table? When did Willie leave town? (one rainy day) Where do
  you think he went?”
  Reread the poem and ask student to draw a picture that depicts the topic of the
  poem (for instance, with this example poem they would draw what they think Willie
  looked like).
                                “Willie MacGurkle”-- Author Unknown

                             Did you ever hear of Willie MacGurkle?
                        Who limped around town with his nose painted purple?

                             He was the strangest man I have ever seen!
                            One eye was orange, and the other was green!

                            Yellow hair hung down like straw on his head,
                           He was dressed all in brown with patches of red!

                           Out of beat-up shoes his poor toes stuck through!
                           In very cold weather those toes would turn blue!

                           One day in the rain beneath an umbrella of black,
                               Willie left town and he never came back!

                                             TIP BOX
 Try this comprehension strategy during later sessions with other descriptive poems. Many of Shel
 Silverstein’s poems will work well using this strategy (but don’t share Silverstein’s drawings that
 accompany his poems with students because this may stifle their own creativity). Remember to ask
 questions that help students comprehend what you read before asking them to visually interpret the
 poem by drawing pictures of the mental images the poem created in their minds. Silverstein’s poems
 are collected in the following books: Where the Sidewalk Ends and A Light In the Attic.
                                      K-2 Reading: All Levels
                                      AIP Area of Need: Comprehension

                                                   “It’s Story Time!”
                                      Time Needed: 20- 25 min.                        Individual Activity

                                                           Developed 8/99 by Deanna L. Dyson and Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
       Children’s storybook with many pictures
       Crayons and piece of paper

What to do:
    Preview book before you read it to the student so you can plan comments you will
    make and questions you can ask as you read it aloud that will help student better
    comprehend the story. Think about the following:
           Take mental note of words that student may not understand and plan how you will
           explain what each word means.
           Plan questions that help student relate personally to story. For example, if you were reading
           “Jack and the Beanstalk” you might ask student if he/she ever disobeyed a parent as Jack did when
           he sold the cow for the magic beans.
           Plan places you will pause during the story to ask student to predict what might happen
           next. Make mental note of any clues in the storyline that you can point out to student to help
           him/her make predictions based on information in the story instead of just guessing.
           Plan a few points in the book where you might review what has happened so far.
    Read the title and author to the student. Show the book’s cover illustration. Ask
    student what he/she thinks the story might be about based on the words in the
    title and the picture on the cover.
    Read the book very expressively using the plans you devised when you previewed the
    After you have read the story, review the plot by flipping through the pages of the
    book and showing the pictures on each page. Ask student to retell the story in
    his/her own words using the picture clues from each page.
    Have student draw a picture of his/her favorite part of the book. Help student
    write a sentence about the picture that relates to the story. Let younger students
    dictate a sentence to you. Allow older or more advanced readers to write their own.

                                                   TIP BOX
Reading aloud to children should be an interactive process where students become highly involved
with the text through being questioned about things in the story, listening to the reader’s commentary,
participating at times during repetitive or predictable parts, etc. Adult readers should model aloud
what effective readers do so that students can learn these things as well. For example, when an
effective reader comes across a word he doesn’t know, he looks at the pictures and surrounding text for
clues to the word’s meaning. As a reader you should model out loud such processes that you usually
just think about silently, so that students can learn to use such strategies themselves.

                                       3-5 Reading: Beginning Level
                                       AIP Area of Need: Comprehension

                                                       “Funny Pages”
                                       Time Needed: 15 min.                      Individual Activity

                                                                             Developed 8/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

   What you’ll need:
          Child appropriate comic strips from the newspaper
          Pair of scissors

   What to do:
       Ask student if he/she has ever read the funny papers in the newspaper. Explain that
       these comic strips tell a short funny story with words and pictures. Show student the
       comic strip section and share one strip by reading it aloud. Enjoy the punchline
       together and then explain that the strip had a beginning, middle, and end just like stories
       in a book do.
       Next, cut out a different comic strip and then cut apart the separate frames.
       Mix the cut apart frames up and ask the student to put the frames back in the
       correct order.
                Incorrect Response: If student has trouble with ordering the frames correctly,
           point out cues in the words or pictures that help determine which comes
           first, middle, or last in the story.
       Once the strip is in order have the student read the comic strip aloud to you and tell
       you what the strip means or is saying. Discuss why the strip is funny or what the
       cartoonist is trying to convey to the reader.
               Incorrect Response: Help students with any difficult words and help him/her
               interpret the meaning of the strip by explaining why it was funny.

                                                   TIP BOX
When students read a story they need to mentally keep the events of the story in correct sequence.
This strategy helps students develop this sense of story order and most every student will be motivated
to learn such a skill using comic strips.

Vocabulary Strategies
       Tab Here

                                  3-5 Reading: Intermediate Level
                                  AIP Area of Need: Vocabulary Strategies

                                          “Dino-Thesaurus Rex”
                                  Time Needed: 10-20 min.                Indv. or Small Group

                                                                             Developed 10/99 by Susan Morris

What you’ll need:
      A picture book featuring dinosaurs or other pictures of high-interest

What to do:
  Share the pictures in the book and have student to describe the characteristics of
  several dinosaurs using her own words.
  Write down the student’s words. Tell the student that words that describe are called
  Have student read short passages in the book to locate several examples of
  adjectives that the author uses to describe the dinosaurs (e.g., big, scary, enormous,
  Show student the thesaurus. Explain to the student the thesaurus is a book that helps
  writers find words with similar meanings (or synonyms) and with opposite meanings (or
  antonyms). Explain that the book is organized alphabetically, like a dictionary.
  Demonstrate to student how to use a thesaurus. Look up one of the adjectives
  on the student’s list. Read some of the synonyms the thesaurus lists. Ask student to
  choose the synonyms she likes best, and have her write it next to her word
  choice on the list. For example, if the thesaurus lists the words bulky, immense,
  extensive, and massive as synonyms for the word “big”, the student might choose the
  word “massive” as a preferred synonym and then write it next to her word, “big”.
  Now show the student some pictures of dinosaurs again. Have student use her new
  list of words to write 3 sentences that describe her favorite dinosaur.
  Expand the use of this strategy by using other informational or picture books of high-
  interest to students: sportscars, animals, famous landmarks, sports, etc.

                                             TIP BOX
 You can also use this lesson to show students that a Thesaurus can be used in place of a dictionary in
 some cases. If the child recognizes one of an unfamiliar word’s synonyms, it can help her determine
 meaning of the word. For example, the thesaurus may list more recognizable words such as “gone”,
 “vanished” or “dead” for the less familiar word “extinct”.

Encoding (Spelling)
      Tab Here

                                         K-2 Writing: Beginning Level
                                         AIP Area of Need: Encoding (Spelling)

                                                  “What’s for Dinner?”
                                         Time Needed: 20-30 min.                 Indv. or Small Group

                                                                                  Developed 9/99 by Deanna L. Dyson

   What you’ll need:
          Magazines with food pictures (or food coupons)
          Scissors, glue, pencil and paper plate (or paper cut in a circle)

   What to do:
       Ask student what some of his/her favorite foods are for dinner. Tell him/her to pretend
       to make dinner by cutting out four different pictures of food from a magazine.
       Help him/her to choose a variety of foods to achieve a balanced meal.
       Help student glue each food picture onto the paper plate.
       Have student say the name of the first food item. Repeat the word to him/her
       slowly. Ask student to listen closely for the first sound he/she hears. When
       student says the correct sound, tell him/her which letter makes that sound and
       then tell student to write that letter under the appropriate food picture.
       Next, help the student hear the last sound in the word and write it on the paper
       plate by following the same steps above. For example, the student might write “mt”
       for “meat” or “bs” for “beans.”
       Follow these steps for each food picture on the student’s plate.
       When finished, tell student to read back the word for each food item on his/her plate.
       Playfully end session by telling student he/she has made you so hungry by the delicious
       dinner he/she has prepared.

                                                  TIP BOX
“What’s for Dinner?” allows students to use what teachers call “invented spelling.” Such a strategy is
appropriate for beginning readers and writers because they are just learning that a letter or letters
represents each sound in a word. Recognizing the first and last sounds they hear in a word is a skill
they need to develop before they can identify sounds they hear in the middle of words.

                                      K-2 Writing: All Levels
                                      AIP Area of Need: Encoding (Spelling)

                                                “Real or Real Silly?”
                                      Time Needed: 20 min.                   Indv. Or Small Group

                                                                                Developed 9/99 by Cynthia Watson

 What you’ll need:
        Writing paper for each student and tutor
        Pencils and a marker

 What to do:
     Have students fold their paper in half lengthwise.
     Along the top label one side, “Real” and the other side, “Real Silly.” You can
     prepare this for the student ahead of time if you like.
     Tell students they are going to play an alphabet game, but playfully warn the
     students that the letters are feeling silly today and may decide to try to trick
     them by forming nonsense or “real silly” words. It will be the students’ jobs to
     discover if the letters make a real world or if the letters are trying to trick them by making
     a silly word.
     Choose one of the following two-letter endings to concentrate on during your
     session: it, op, in, en, at, an, or ap.
     On a blank piece of paper use a marker to write a single consonant letter. Then
     add your selected two-letter ending. For example, if you chose the ending “it”, you
     might write “bit” for a real word or “dit” for a real silly word.
     Say the word you write out loud. Ask if this sounds like a word they have heard
     before. If so, what does it mean? Define any words that are real words but students
     don’t know.
     When students agree a word is “real” or “real silly” have each one write the
     word on the appropriate side of his/her paper. When you come across a “real silly”
     word, playfully say that the letters weren’t able to trick the students this time.
     Continue this process by using different letters from the alphabet to form “real”
     and “real silly words.” Each time, place a consonant letter before the two-letter
     ending, for example: bit, dit, fit, rit, etc.
     When finished, have students read the “real” words together with you. Call
     attention to the fact that the words all sound alike or rhyme.
     Next session, choose to work on a different two-letter ending. More advanced students
     can tackle three-letter endings (e.g., ake, ack, ick, alt) and adding beginning two-
     letter combinations (e.g., sh, ch, th, wh, br, dr, fr, bl, cl, etc.).
                                                 TIP BOX
This strategy helps students see that a word is not a word just because you can sound it out. Working
with common two- and three-letter endings also helps beginning readers figure out the phonics system.
Learning word patterns also helps readers identify and decode words quickly.

                                     3-5 Writing: Beginning Level
                                     AIP Area of Need: Encoding (Spelling)

                                        “Make I Take Your Order Please?”
                                     Time Needed: 30 minutes                     Individual Activity

                                                                              Developed 8/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
    Pad of paper and a pencil
    Pretend check (photocopy from attached page)
    2 copies of menu (attached)

What to do:
    Ask student if he/she has ever been to a restaurant before. Talk about what usually
    happens when you go to a restaurant: the waiter or waitress gives you a menu and
    then asks to take your order; waiter/waitress writes down what you order; the chef cooks
    your food, the waiter/waitress brings it out; you eat it; and then you pay for your food
    before you leave.
    Tell student you are going to pretend to be a customer at a restaurant. Student
    pretends to be the waiter or waitress. He/she will take down your order and add up
    your bill and then you will pay the student.
    While you look at one menu, talk aloud about the foods you see listed. When you decide,
    tell the student what you want to order- one food item at a time. Try to choose a
    variety of items from different sections of the menu. Let student refer to the other
    menu to check his/her spelling if needed as he/she writes down each item you
    order on the pad of paper. Help student correct any misspellings by asking him/her to
    compare his/her own spelling with the spelling of the word on the menu. Have the
    student record the amount each item costs.
    Help the student add up the total for your bill.
    Write the student a pretend check for the amount due. Discuss how a check is written
    as you do it. Thank student for their excellent service.
    Now reverse roles and do this again, with you playing the waiter and the
    student playing the customer.
    You can use this strategy again with same student by using menus that you pick up from
    real local restaurants.

                                                 TIP BOX
This strategy helps students see some ways basic skills will be used in their everyday adult lives:
visiting a restaurant, reading from the menu to order, and writing a check. This activity also integrates
reading, writing, and math in a meaningful and motivating way.

                City Café Menu

Toast………….……………………………………………$ .50
Bacon………….…………………………………………..$ .50

                     Lunch or Dinner
Fried Chicken ...….………………………………………..$2.00

Green Beans …..…………………………………..………..$1.00
Corn……………..…………………………………..…….. .$1.00

Milk……………………………………….…….…………..$ .50
Orange Juice……………………………...………………….$.50
Tea……………………………………….………………….$ .50
Coffee……………………………………………………….$ .50

Ice Cream………………………………..……….…………$1.00
                City Café Menu

 Toast………….……………………………………………$ .50
 Bacon………….……………….…………………………..$ .50

                     Lunch or Dinner
Fried Chicken ...….………………………………………..$2.00

Green Beans …..………………………………...…………..$1.00
Corn……………..……………………………...………….. .$1.00

Milk……………………………………….…….…………..$ .50
Orange Juice……………………………...………………….$.50
Tea……………………………………….………………….$ .50
Coffee……………………………………………………….$ .50

Ice Cream………………………………..…………………$1.00
            To be photocopied for “Make I take your order please?”

Pretend Bank of Pensacola                     Date ___________

Pay to the Order of _________________________________ $ ___. ___


For __________                          _____________________

Pretend Bank of Pensacola                     Date ___________

Pay to the Order of _________________________________ $ ___. ___


For __________                          _____________________

Pretend Bank of Pensacola                     Date ___________

Pay to the Order of _________________________________ $ ___. ___


For __________                          _____________________

Pretend Bank of Pensacola                     Date ___________

Pay to the Order of _________________________________ $ ___. ___


For __________                          _____________________

                                     3-5 Writing: All Levels
                                     AIP Area of Need: Encoding (Spelling)

                                               “Spelling Detective”
                                     Time Needed: 30 min.                      Individual Activity

                                                                   Developed 9/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
       Current spelling word list
       Paper and pencil
       “Spelling Detective” mini-poster (photocopy of the attached page)

What to do:
    Tell student that part of learning to be a good speller is to develop a strategy for
    memorizing new words. “Spelling Detective” will help student remember some steps to
    take when learning to spell a new word.
    Look at the “Spelling Detective” mini-poster together. Talk about how student will
    do each step. Work through an example using the first word on student’s
    spelling word list.
    Help student work through this process for several spelling words.
    Once he/she catches on to the idea, ask student to work through a few spelling
    words independently while talking aloud through the process so you can monitor the
    student’s thinking.
    When student finishes using the strategy with all words on his/her list, give student a
    short mock spelling test by calling out a few words from the list.
           If student has difficulty spelling a word, help him/her mentally walk through the
           study steps he/she used from the mini-poster. This should help him/her better
           recall the word’s spelling.
    Give student a photocopy of the mini-poster to use anytime he/she studies new
    spelling words.

                                               TIP BOX

Many struggling spellers have not developed a systematic strategy for learning to spell new words.
Struggling not know an effective strategy or they have not gotten in the habit of using a strategy for
Either they do spel
studying word spellings. This spelling detective theme and mini-poster make the process of learning
new words appealing and practical for elementary school students.

           Spelling Detective

1. Look at the word closely.

           2. Say the word
              out loud.

3. Think about what the word means.

4. Spell the word out loud: C-A-T

5. Write the word- say each letter as you write it.

          6. Make sure you spelled the word right.

Sentence Structure
      Tab Here

                                       3-5 Writing: Beginning Level
                                       AIP Area of Need: Sentence Structure

                                                    “Sentence Fix-Up”
                                       Time Needed: 10-20 min.                      Indv. or Small Group

                                                          Developed 8/99 by Glenda S. Winborne and Angela Thames-Martin

  What you’ll need:
         Photocopy of attached sentences on card stock

  What to do:
     Before meeting with the student, cut apart the words in the sentences listed on the
     attached sheet. Keep the words for each sentence together by placing each sentence’s
     words in separate piles. The sentences have different fonts to help you keep the words
     from different sentences apart.
     Explain to student that the words for each sentence are all mixed up and that you are
     going to help him/her “fix” the sentences by putting them in the right order.
     Do this activity like you might do a puzzle. Put all the word pieces out on the table
     for one sentence at a time. Help the student put the words in correct order. Talk
     about cues that you use to help determine which words go where (e.g. first word
     in a sentence begins with a capital letter, every sentence ends with a .,?, or !, verbs follow
     nouns, etc.).
     Have student read the sentences aloud while he/she is putting them together to
     help student learn to self-check attempts and learn the importance of word
     order in sentences. For example, the student attempts to put the sentence together like
     this: “like I ice cream.”, then when he/she reads it out loud you can help student see that
     it doesn’t make sense this way or that it doesn’t sound right.
     After each sentence is “fixed” have the student read the correctly sequenced
     sentence aloud.
     Do this for each sentence until all sentences are “fixed”.
     Have the student write his/her own sentence on the blank sentence boxes without
     you looking. Tell student to mix up the words. Try to put the sentence together
     copying the procedure the student used earlier.
     Make use of this strategy again with same student by writing sentences from books he/she
     has read on sentence strips and then cutting apart the words.

                                                  TIP BOX
Part of learning sentence structure is to learn that the order of words is important, that punctuation and
capitalization occur in certain parts of a sentence, and that some types of words are usually followed
by other types of words (e.g., verbs follow nouns). Students also need to learn to check their own
sentence structure by rereading aloud what they have written to make sure it “sounds right”.

Photocopy this page on cardstock and then cut apart the sentences for “Sentence Fix-Up”:

   The               dog followed me                                              to        school.

      Do                    you                     like                apple                pie?

      I             won the                                      race!

 What                            time                            is                 it?

Once         upon          a      time        there         was        a        beautiful    princess.

   Follow                       the               directions                          carefully.

Blank sentence boxes for student to use for last part of activity:

                                   3-5 Writing: Intermediate Level
                                   AIP Area of Need: Sentence Structure

                                                  “Speed Writing”
                                   Time Needed: 15 min.                Individual or Small Group

                                                                          Developed 6/00 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
     A text selection written on the student’s level
     Pencil and paper

What to do:
  Explain to students that you will be working with them to increase their speed in writing
  spoken words down.
  Begin by modeling this activity to student. Ask one student to read aloud one
  sentence from the text you have selected. Write down what the student reads
  without stopping. This will provide a model of fluent writing for students to imitate.
  Fluently read aloud one sentence at a time to the students. After you have read
  one sentence, have students write down what you said without stopping. For less
  advanced students, say an entire sentence and then break it into smaller chunks such as
  words or phrases. After you read a short phrase, have student write it down. As they
  improve their skills in transferring spoken words to written words, increase the length of
  phrases you read until they are able to write a whole sentence.
  After students have written several sentences, go back with students to work
  on correcting spellings or punctuation they had trouble with.
  Keep these tips in mind:
     Encourage students to write entire chunks (word, phrase, or sentence) without
     stopping to correct mistakes.
     Encourage students to write quickly but legibly.
     Do not stop during writing time to sound out words or make corrections. Work on
     problem words only after a sentence has been written.

                                            TIP BOX
    This strategy helps students develop writing fluency. This strategy helps students learn to
            transfer a flow of speech to words written on paper
            visualize spoken words, phrases and sentences as they hear them
            write entire chunks of speech rather than syllable by syllable
            write fluidly rather than haltingly

                                      3-5 Writing: All Levels
                                      AIP Area of Need: Sentence Structure

                                                    “Sentence Salon”
                                      Time Needed: 15- 20 min.                      Individual Activity

                                                                                      Developed 9/99 by Janie Seal

What you’ll need:
       Pencil and paper
       Two different versions of story (provided in table below)

What to do:
    Say to student, “Do you know what a “salon” is? It is a place of business where people
    get their hair cut and styled. Have you ever gotten your hair cut at a salon? When
    people leave the salon, they have all different lengths of hair; some have long hair,
    some have short, and others may have medium length hair. I think that’s fine. If
    everyone had the same length haircut, I think it would be boring and dull. Well,
    it is the same way with sentences. If we hear or read sentences that are all the same
    length, we become bored and it is not interesting for us. So let’s learn today how to
    make sure we create sentences that are different lengths when we write in
    order to make our writing more interesting.”
    Say, “I will read the first story and then you read the second story. Let’s see
    which story sounds the most interesting” (Before the session begins write two
    versions of the same story on a piece of paper- see example below).

TUTOR READS                                                        STUDENT READS
The dog was black.                                 Yesterday I found a small black dog.
He caught the ball.                                He was lost.
I took him home.                                   When I threw him a ball, he caught it easily.
                                                   Mom said I could take him home.

    Ask student, “Which story was more interesting? Why?”
    ☺ Student’s was because it included details and the length of the sentences varied.
•   Give student practice by writing some simple sentences for him/her to expand upon to vary
    the length. Ask questions about details the student left out of the sentence to prompt him
    to add more detailed information to some of the sentences.
    Tell student to write a short story about his/her favorite toy or game (or anything else
    of interest to the student). Remind him/her to write sentences of varying lengths.
    Help student revise sentences to achieve a nice variety in sentence length.
    Remind student to remember the “Sentence Salon” next time he/she is writing
    a story.

                                               TIP BOX
This strategy helps students learn that varying sentence length can make their writing better.

Narrative (Tells a Story)
         Tab Here

                                            K-2 Writing: Beginning Level
                                            AIP Area of Need: Narrative

                                                             “Tri-Fold Books”
                                            Time Needed: 20-30 min.                         Individual Activity

                                                                                              Developed 10/99 by Deanna L. Dyson

What you’ll need:
        Piece of paper and scissors
        Crayons and markers

What to do:
    Before meeting with student, fold piece of paper lengthwise, then cut it down the middle to make a
    rectangular piece of paper. Fold one of the two pieces of paper you make into thirds.

•   Ask student to tell you a story about something exciting she has experienced. Ask questions to
    get her to add sufficient detail. If she needs you to prompt her, ask her about typical events most every
    child has experienced such as a birthday party, getting a new pet, a special day with a relative, a new baby
    sister or brother, first time playing in a ball game, etc.
•  Retell the student’s story in your own words. Allow student to correct any “errors” in
   your retelling.
• Ask student to help you come up with sentences that tell what happened first, in
   the middle, and at the last part of her story. Write what student says for each
   phase of the story sequentially in the boxes moving from left to right.
   First…                   Then…                  Last…

    I helped my mom bake a big          My friends came over and          I blew out the six candles on
    Barbie cake.                        gave me a lot of presents.        my birthday cake and then
                                                                          everyone went home.
•   Allow student time to draw pictures that illustrate each sentence in the three
    boxes. Fold the book’s right hand side over the middle section and then the left hand side
    over the middle section to make the “cover”. Help student think of a good title for her
    book and write the title on the cover. Teach her that titles are supposed to tell what
    the story is about in just a few words. Let student draw the cover’s illustration.
•   Reread the book to student. Afterwards, ask, “What did you do first? What did
    you do next? What happened last?”
•   Finally, let student “practice” reading her tri-fold book. If student is a non-reader,
    she may “pretend” to read by talking about the pictures. This is perfectly normal and
    acceptable for an emerging reader.
                                            TIP BOX
At the end of this strategy, it is okay if student tells the story using the pictures as cues instead of actually reading the
words. From this strategy beginning readers can learn that stories have a beginning, middle, and end, and that what is said
can be written down so it can be retold again.

                                           3-5 Writing: Beginning Level
                                           AIP Area of Need: Narrative

                                                  “Wish You Were Here!”
                                           Time Needed: 20-30 min.                       Individual Activity

                                                                              Developed 9/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
        Pencil and crayons or markers
        Photocopy of attached page on cardstock
        Optional: mailing address and stamp for postcard (may need to provide this to ensure it
        will be mailed from home)

What to do:
    Photocopy on cardstock and cut out the postcards from the attached sheet. This
    will provide two postcards (use the second one with next student you tutor).
    Ask student to tell you about something he/she has done recently that was fun
    or interesting (e.g., playing a ball game, a birthday party, going to the movies, playing in
    the park, making a good grade on a test, etc.). Ask questions to get student to elaborate
    on the details of the event (e.g., “What did you do then?” and “How did that make you
    feel?” and “What did it look like?” etc.).
    Tell student to draw a picture about that event on the blank side of the
    On a separate sheet of paper, help student write a draft of a short friendly letter to
    a friend or relative about the event. Teach student to include the following elements:
    greeting (“Dear _____,”); body (message); and the complimentary closing (e.g.,
    “Your friend, _____”). Work out any revisions and/or corrections on that piece of paper.
    When the letter is “perfect” have the student copy it on the postcard.
    If you are providing the stamp, give it to the student and let him/her affix it to the
    postcard. Tell the student to take the letter home and have his/her parent or
    guardian help him/her fill in the mailing address. Another option would be to use
    the phone book to locate a local recipient’s address and have student write in the mailing
    address and mail it from the school’s mailbox.

                                                TIP BOX
This strategy gives students a meaningful purpose for writing. When children know that what they
write is actually going to be mailed to someone, they are more likely to be truly concerned about
accuracy. Creating the picture for the postcard stimulates special interest in the project and serves as a
pre-writing activity. Recipients of the postcards will be happy to get news from the student and a
picture suitable for framing.

Photocopy on card stock and then cut out postcards to use with ‘Wish
You Were Here!” friendly-letter writing activity. Student draws
picture about a recent event in their life on the opposite blank side.



                                    Name _________________________

                                    Address     _______________________




                                    Name _________________________

                                    Address     _______________________


                                         3-5 Writing: Intermediate Level
                                         AIP Area of Need: Narrative (Poetry)

                                              “I’m a Poet and I Know It”
                                         Time Needed: 20- 30 min.                  Individual Activity

                                                                             Developed 9/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

     What you’ll need:
            Writing paper, blank paper, pencil, markers, and glue
            Large sheet of colorful construction paper
            Optional: rhyming dictionary

     What to do:
        Tell student he/she is going to write a poem called a limerick. Explain that these
        short five-lined poems are fun to write and usually follow this rhyming pattern: the
        last word in the first, second, and fifth lines rhyme and the last word in the shorter third
        and fourth lines rhyme. There are usually the same number of beats (syllables heard) in
        lines 1, 2, and 5 and in lines 3 and 4.
        LINE 1 ____________________________________________a
        LINE 2 ____________________________________________a
        LINE 3 ________________________b
        LINE 4 ________________________b
        LINE 5 ____________________________________________a

        Read this example of a limerick by Edward Lear (for other published examples see Doffy
        Dower Dillies: Silly Limericks by Edward Lear):

            There once was a frog named Pete,
            Who did nothing but burp and eat;
            He examined each fly,
            That came passing by,
            And then thought, “You are dead meat.”

        After reading, ask the student what an appropriate picture might be to illustrate
        this poem. Brainstorm some ideas.
        Now help the student construct his/her own limerick. Use a rhyming dictionary (if
        available) to help you. Begin with a topic the student knows a lot about.
        Have student copy his/her limerick using neat handwriting on a clean sheet of paper. Have
        student create a picture that illustrates the limerick. Glue the picture and limerick onto
        a large sheet of colorful construction paper to make ready for display.

                                                     TIP BOX
The built-in rhythm and rhyme of a limerick has natural appeal for most elementary school children.
Limericks give students experience in telling a short funny story. Working with the number of beats in
each line makes students aware of syllables in words. Thinking of rhyming words helps students learn
how rhyming words are related phonetically.                                                                     64
                                      3-5 Writing: All Levels
                                      AIP Area of Need: Narrative Writing

                                                      “In the News”
                                      Time Needed: 30-45 min.                                   Small Group

                                                     Developed 10/99 by Susan Morris, Tanya Kane, and Angela Thames-Martin

 What you’ll need:
        Even number of students
        3x5 index cards (5 for each student)

 What to do:
    Have students pair off.
    Tell students that they are going to pretend to be newspaper reporters. Their
    assignments are to interview their partners in order to write interesting stories
    about the person interviewed for the newspaper.
    Help students work as a group to brainstorm a list of five questions to ask their
    partners. Encourage them to think of open-ended questions that require the
    interviewee to give elaborate answers instead of only one-word or short answers. For
    example, “What do you like to do after school?” is a better interview question than, “Do
    you watch television after school?”
    Have each student write one question at the top of each of their index cards.
    Let students take turn answering each other’s questions. Have students write
    down their partners’ responses on the card with the question.
    Students then work individually to write a short newspaper story about their
    Circulate to help students with revising and editing.
    When all students are finished, allow time for students to read their “newspaper
    articles” aloud to the group.

                                               TIP BOX
If possible, save copies of students’ work so that you can compile them later and actually publish a
classroom newspaper that features stories about each child OR if the teacher already publishes a
weekly parent newsletter, ask her to include one story each week. Make sure to include the name the
student author who wrote the article about the spotlighted student.

Expository (Explains)
       Tab Here

                                             K-2 Writing: All Levels
                                             AIP Area of Need: Expository (Explains)

                                                  “Alien-- How Do You Do?”
                                             Time Needed: 20 min.                             Individual Activity
                                                                                               Developed 9/99 by Cynthia Watson

What you’ll need:
         Writing paper, pencil, and markers

What to do:
    Tell student that you are going to pretend to be an alien from outer space who has just
    recently arrived on the planet Earth. Because you are an alien you have not figured out
    how the humans do certain things such as brushing teeth, making a sandwich,
    opening a milk carton, tying a shoe, washing hair, riding a bike, coloring a picture with
    crayons, etc. The aliens back on your planet have asked you to write down how to do
    such things so they can learn more about the human race. To do this, you need the
    student’s help.
    Choose a how-to topic. Try to choose a how-to topic that student can easily
    demonstrate to you on the spot such as tying a shoe, coloring a picture, reading a book,
    writing his/her name, etc. This will make this task more appropriate for the student’s
    stage of development.
    Ask student, “What do I do first?” Write down exactly what the student says
    (with the exception of correcting any grammatical errors). Write so the student can see
    what you are writing and say each word aloud as you write it.
    Continue asking what you do next until the student has dictated complete
    directions to you. Ask questions that help student elaborate on his/her explanation, such
    as “Where do I get that?” or “Do I have to do anything before I can do that?”
    Read back each step and point to the words as you read them. Ask student to
    make any corrections he/she thinks are necessary.
         ☺ Correct Response: Student can convey steps sequentially.
           Incorrect Response: Student jumps ahead, skipping necessary steps. Ask student questions to help
           him/her back up and give any prerequisite information.
    Now tell student you are going to read his/her directions and try to correctly
    complete the task. This will be easy to do if the student chose a how-to topic like
    writing with a pencil, or tying a shoelace. If the topic is not something you can do right
    there, such as washing your hair, try acting out the steps.
             As you perform each step of the directions, you may run into problems. For example, the student
             may not have included that you were supposed to pick up the pencil before you could write with it
             (have fun being silly when this happens). Correct omissions that come up as you perform each
             step of the directions by working with the student to revise the directions.

                                                         TIP BOX
Sequencing is a difficult task for young learners; however, this is an important skill for expository writing. This playful
strategy helps students understand the importance of not leaving out critical points when explaining something to someone
else. Encourage the student to pick the how-to topic. Children will participate more if it is something that interests them.
Taking dictation from the student demonstrates your personal interest and that spoken words can be recorded through

                                            3-5 Writing: All Levels
                                            AIP Area of Need: Expository (Explains)

                                                                   “Pen Pals”
                                            Time Needed: 10 min. per student            Group of Individuals

                                                                                  Developed 6/00 by Angela Thames-Martin

  What you’ll need:
           Spiral bound notebook for each student “pen pal”

  What to do:
      Ask the teacher to provide you with a list of a few students you can become “pen pals” with by
      writing back and forth through spiral bound notebooks. You should set up a consistent routine for
      picking up and dropping off the notebooks so that students know when they are expected to have an
      entry ready for you and when they can expect a response from you. You might consider picking up
      notebooks on Friday and dropping them off early during the next week so that students have an opportunity
      to write to you during their free time during the week.
      Write a personal message in each pen pal’s notebook that is designed to get a
      response from the student. For the first entry you may want to write a paragraph
      about yourself for purposes of getting acquainted. Avoid questions that would get a “yes”
      or “no” response. Some examples might include: “What do you like about school?” or
      “Tell me about your typical day at school.” or “What do you like to do for fun?”
      Teacher should give pen pals an opportunity to respond to your message after
      you drop off the notebooks.
      After students have responded, pick up notebooks and read each student’s
      response. Respond positively and appropriately in writing by:
          modeling excellent writing skills and using very legible print (not cursive)
          answering questions asked by the student
          asking questions about something the student wrote about that you didn’t understand
          or want to know more about
          asking questions that help clarify the student’s thinking or stimulate new ideas
          get to know more about the student, his language, and his culture
      Be careful that subjects you write about are apprropriate and culturally
      Continue to exchange the notebook in this way to keep the dialogue going.
      Experts suggest that you do not correct spelling or conventions in students’ journal
      writings because it will inhibit their flow of ideas and expression. Your objective with this
      strategy is to get students to explain ideas through writing. You can be assured that
      students will learn a lot about how to write using standard conventions when writing from
      what you write to them.

                                                        TIP BOX
This strategy uses what teachers call a “dialogue journal”. This strategy benefits students by helping them develop
reading and writing fluency, improving their spelling and handwriting, understanding that writing is a means of
communication, and making reading and writing a meaningful part of their everyday lives. This strategy also gives you
an excellent opportunity to serve as a mentor to a child.
      Tab Here

                                           3-5 Writing: Beginning Level
                                           AIP Area of Need: Focus/Organization

                                                “Do I See What You See?”
                                           Time Needed: 15-20 min.                         Indv. or Small Group
                                                                  Developed 8/99 by Janie Seal and Angela Thames-Martin
What you’ll need:
       Pencil and paper

What to do:
   Introduce activity by saying to student, “Today we are going to play a game called ‘Do I
   See What You See?’ People use their imagination to think about things in their minds.
   When you tell someone about something, you want them to be able to imagine
   what you are saying just as you experienced or imagined it.”
   Ask student to describe something: “Tell me about something you like or something
   you did. I’m going to write down what you say. Make your story about 3 sentences long.
   Then I’m going to try to see or imagine what you told me. Then you’re going to tell me if I
   imagined it correctly.”
            Incorrect Response: If the student cannot think of a short story, give him/her some story prompts
            such as “Tell me about something fun you did with your friend”, or “Tell me about your favorite
   Write down what student says. For example, “Pizza is my favorite food. I want to eat
   it everyday. It tastes so good.” Skip lines so that revision will be easier in the next
            If the student uses poor grammar, correct him/her indirectly by correctly rephrasing what he/she
            said and then writing it down the correct way. For instance, if the student says, “Pizza are my
            favorite food”, then you correctly rephrase it by saying, “Pizza is my favorite food” as you write the
   Play the game: After writing down what the student said, say, “Let’s see if “I see
   what you see.” Reread what they said and playfully make unlikely guesses
   about details the student left out. For instance, if the student said, “Pizza is my
   favorite food”, you might say, “I’m guessing you like pizza covered with black olives and
   anchovies.” Most likely the student will laugh and protest telling you he/she likes
   pepperoni pizza. At this point you say, “Oh! then let’s add that detail to what you said so
   that I see what you see.” Use arrows to insert details that the student adds as you play
   the game until you have drawn as many details as you can from the student through
   playing the game. Ask the student questions beginning with the words. “Who, What,
   When, Why, Where, or How” to help them add detail.
   Rewrite the sentences including the revisions: Write a nice legible copy of the new
   descriptive story. Compare the versions by rereading the first and second versions. Point
   out to student that the details he/she provided in the second version made the description
   much more vivid so that you as the reader can “See What They See.” Give student the
   copy of his/her revised work to take home.
                                           TIP BOX
Beginning writers often forget to add details to their writing. This strategy helps students see the need for elaboration to
improve their writing.

                                     3-5 Writing: All Levels
                                     AIP Area of Need: Focus/Organization

                                                   “Venn Diagrams”
                                     Time Needed: 20 min.                      Individual Activity

                                                                       Developed 9/99 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
     Writing paper
     Optional: photocopy of attached page

What to do:
  Discuss the similarities and differences between two common objects using a
  Venn diagram (two overlapping circles used to compare and contrast topics). You may
  want to use the bird vs. cat example on the attached page. Have student write or
  draw differences in the parts of the circles that do not overlap. Have student
  write or draw similarities in the overlapping section in the middle. It will help the
  student to have photos or drawings of each object to look at as he/she brainstorms the
  possibilities. Use this time to teach the student the meanings of the words
  “compare” (how are two or more things are alike) and “contrast” (how two or more
  things differ).
   Develop a second Venn diagram comparing and contrasting different objects or topics
  (can use a photocopy of the blank Venn diagrams on the attached page or draw your
  own). You may want to develop the second one around something students are
  studying in science or social studies (ask the teacher for suggestions). Some other
  suggestions: day vs. night; baby vs. older person; school day vs. Saturday; two
  characters in a book; two books by the same author.
  Use the Venn diagram to help the more advanced student write two paragraphs
  on writing paper: one paragraph that explains how two things are alike; and one that
  explains how the two things are different. The younger or less advanced student can
  write two sentences: one that compares and one that contrasts.
  Future sessions using Venn diagrams can focus on comparing and contrasting new things
  or you can try drawing 3 overlapping circles to compare and contrast three things.

                                            TIP BOX
  Venn diagrams are a valuable teaching strategy because they help students think more
  deeply and analytically about what they know or are reading and learning about in school.
  Venn diagrams also serve as an excellent pre-writing activity.

Venn diagram for bird vs. cat:

                                 Blank Venn diagram:

Writing Conventions
      Tab Here

                                           3-5 Writing: Beginning Level
                                           AIP Area of Need: Writing Conventions

                                                               “Eagle’s Eye”
                                           Time Needed: 20 min.                           Individual Activity

                                                                                   Developed 6/00 by Angela Thames-Martin

What you’ll need:
      Sentences with spelling, punctuation, and usage errors
      Pencil and pad of paper

What to do:
  Before meeting with the student, ask the teacher what writing skills the student is having trouble with or
  what new writing skills she is working on with the whole class (e.g., capitalizing first word in a sentence, use
  of question marks, use of commas)
  Create at least six sentences with errors that focus on the writing skills the student is needing to
  master. Write one sentence on each piece of paper. Skip several lines and write a corrected version of
  the sentence below each incorrect sentence. Fold the sheet of paper so that the correct version is
  hidden. Below are some examples.

  he yelled “chris won the game         do you no how to dance.            we was going to the store
  He yelled, “Chris won the game!”      Do you know how to dance?          We were going to the store.

  Begin tutoring student by telling him that you are going to play the game “Eagle’s
  Eye”. Explain that eagles are known for their keen eyesight and in this game you want to
  see if he can “see” the mistakes in the sentences you show him.
  Show the student one sentence with errors making sure the correct version is hidden.
  When student finds an error ask him to explain why it is wrong and how you
  should correct it (e.g., “You think this letter ‘j’ in ‘Jimmy’ should be capitalized? Why?
  Oh, because you always capitalize the first letter in a person’s name. Okay, let’s correct
  that.”) Correct the sentence using editing marks. Continue asking student to look for
  errors until he says he sees no more errors in the sentence.
  When finished with the first sentence with errors reveal the edited sentence.
  ☺ Correct Response: For each error that the student found, praise his “eagle eye” and restate why the
  error was wrong (e.g., “You do have an ‘eagle’s eye’. You were right, the ‘j’ in ‘Jimmy’ was supposed to be
  capitalized because a person’s name always begins with a capital letter.”).
     Incorrect Response: If there was an error that the student did not find, point it out to him. Teach him
  what was wrong in the first sentence and how to correctly do it by showing him the correct way in the
  second sentence (e.g., “Oops, this mistake got past you. When you ask a question you are supposed to end
  the sentence with a question mark, not a period.”).
     Incorrect Response: If student found an error where there really was not one, teach him why the
  original version was correct.
  Work through one sentence at a time teaching why each error was wrong and how to
  correct it until you have worked through all the sentences.

                                                    TIP BOX
  When using this strategy, make sure to discuss errors in one sentence before moving on to the next sentence. This
  gives students the opportunity to apply what they are learning earlier in your tutoring session to subsequent
  sentences later in your session. You can use this “Eagle’s Eye” strategy again and again by creating a new list of
  sentences with errors that focus on different writing conventions students need to master.

 Tab Here

  Tutor Handbook
Elementary Students

      Information Compiled by
           Peggy Pilcher
    Volunteer Coordinator for the
   Escambia County School District


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