As kindergarten teachers, we know that we need to teach concepts of print. But do you know the best way to teach the difference between letters, words, and sentences effectively?
I’ve seen so many teachers make this chart:
I’ve made it too! The problem is, we often treat this chart as the lesson. We sort the letters, words, and sentences with students and expect them to remember the difference.
The problem? They often don’t remember. That’s because this chart is the follow up to a lesson, not the lesson itself.
The One Lesson You Need To Teach Letters, Words, and Sentences
This lesson is from Little Readers Kindergarten September. For it, you will need:
*Unifix Cubes – use a marker to write the words “This is my cat” with one letter on each cube.
*Letters, Words, and Sentences Anchor Chart
*Letters, words, and sentences written on sentence strips and cut up
Introducing What a Letter Is
What teaching students what a letter is, I explain it as they are like building blocks. Individually, letters are the smallest pieces. However, they LOVE to join together to build something bigger!
Introducing What a Word Is
When letters join together, they can build a word! Letters love to build words and there are millions of words that they can build.
But do you know what? Words like to build to. When words connect, they can build something even bigger.
Introducing What a Sentence Is
When words connect, they can build a sentence! Students will be amazed to see how the pieces all come together.
I use blank cubes for the spaces and explain that the spaces are like glue or the cement between bricks. Don’t worry about teaching punctuation yet – too much information and your lesson will lose it’s purpose.
Creating Your Letters, Words, and Sentences Anchor Chart
Now that you have had the “I do” part of your lesson, you can move on to the “we do” portion – creating the anchor chart.
Have the letters, words, and sentences already cut up and in a basket. Pull one out at a time and have students help you put it in the correct spot on the anchor chart.
I have students follow up my cutting out and sorting letters vs. words vs sentences with a partner.
Letters, Words, and Sentences Song
After sorting, I teach students the Letters, Words, and Sentences song. We will sing this every day for a week or two.
Want engaging reading activities for the entire year?
This lesson was from Little Readers Kindergarten September. The Little Readers Kindergarten Reading Curriculum has daily concepts of print or phonemic awareness lessons already planned out for you as well as engaging close read lessons, vocabulary lessons, writing, and crafts. Get the Little Readers Curriculum for the year here!