TIPS

Back to Basics: Poems

Published: November 15, 2016

Through poems, we provide students with reinforcement and exposure in their beginning literacy skills. Each unit (in the beginning units) has 3 poems that work on 1-2 focus letters per poem. Through the vertical phonics approach, we introduce students to the most frequent sounds of a letter in order to provide them with the skill to recall these sounds when later decoding unfamiliar words. Phonemic awareness and print concepts are our main focuses as we move through each unit, and the poems always include engaging content that is closely related to the theme of the current unit.

Remember to:

  • Focus on the sound(s) of the letter while airwriting it. We want our students to develop a strong connection between the letter shape and the sound(s) associated with it.

  • Review letters (and their sounds) learned in previous units. For example, notice “m” in the poem “Umbrella” when you move on to Unit 2.
  • Work on concepts of print where possible and when it’s appropriate.
  • If your students are becoming confident with the poems, try using one as a mentor text and write a different poem as a class or individually.

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