Saturday, November 28, 2015

"A vs. An" Instructional Resources for Little Words

A and an... such simple, small words, right? I have noticed, however, that while reading these words poses little difficulty, very few of the students I see daily have actually mastered the correct usage for these words in writing. They often use the two words interchangeably, with no clear discernment for which word is actually appropriate in context. To help alleviate this problem, I have created a new product that focuses solely on understanding when to use a and an.

The product is intended to provide thorough materials that will help students learn the rule behind the usage of a and an, practice applying the rule through differentiated sort activities, and then apply the rule independently in writing. You can see detailed images from the preview file below.

"I can" statement poster ...
 Rules posters for a and an combined as well as separated ...
Differentiated sort activities that feature words as well as pictures so students have multiple ways to apply this rule, depending on their needs prior to and throughout instruction with this skill ...
A tree map recording sheet that corresponds to the sort activities and also features a "challenge" component as well as a final "a vs. an" page that may be used as independent practice or as an assessment for this skill if needed ...
Now, this is how I have already used parts of this product in my classroom. The sort activities, in particular, are beneficial for my students. I was careful to include the option for pictures, which eliminates any confusion over reading potentially unknown words. This also helps students to focus on the sound at the beginning of each word, rather than simply looking for the letter. 
Once students become comfortable using the picture version of the sort, I then transition to the words. They love using the puzzle pieces, and aligning the cards just right is one extra challenge for those fine motor skills!
To keep the pieces for this sort activity organized, I made my own little pocket foldable. This is such a helpful little tool that the students can easily use as well.
I hope you can find a way to use this in your classroom as well! So far, it has been helpful to students of multiple grade levels in my classroom, and I tried to create a product that would be easily adaptable for your classroom needs. If interested, you can access this newbie here in the Tally Tales TPT store!