CAFE in the Classroom

CAFE stands for Comprehension, Accuracy, Fluency, and Expanding Vocabulary. Under each category, there are reading strategies essential to developing a successful reader. As I implement the different strategies in my classroom, I will post supporting lesson ideas, websites, picture books, and videos.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Using Beginning and Ending Sounds


When teaching students to solve words, I teach students to use beginning and ending sounds. This strategy fits under Accuracy on the CAFÉ menu. Towards the beginning of second grade, I notice that the majority of my students know their consonants, but still struggle with many of the vowel sounds. This causes them to quickly guess a word based on the beginning sound. By teaching students to also pay attention to the end, it forces beginning readers to slow down and look at the whole word. They are usually much more successful when they are able to use the beginning and ending sound to help them solve the word. Once they read the word, I always remind them to ask themselves, “Does that make sense?”

Explaining the Strategy:
“You can look at the first and last parts of a word to read it.”
“You can use word parts to solve a word.”
“Did you look at the whole word?”
“Did what you read make sense?”

Ideas for Teaching:
  • While reading a big book or poem, highlight the beginning and ending sound in a few words from the text. Have the class help solve the word, being sure to pay attention to the whole word. 
  • While reading or writing as a whole class mini-lesson, have students come up and highlight the beginning and ending sounds in a word. Have the students tell the first and last parts of the word. 
  • Have students play Word Race. On a blank game board, write one-syllable words in each box. Work in groups of two, three, or four. They place their colored markers at Start, roll a die, move the number of spaces, read the word written on the space, and tell the first and last parts. The first player to get to the end wins. 
  • As a class, hold up a few one-syllable word cards and have the children read them and tell the parts.

Helpful Websites:
ReadWriteThink offers a lesson to teach phonemic awareness. The lesson uses chants and matching activities to help students recognize words with the same sound.

This lesson may be too easy for second grade, but it reinforces words that have the same sound.

This website offers many lessons for a SmartBoard. About halfway down the page, there is a lesson for beginning and ending sounds.

Supporting Picture Books:
Kellogg, S. (1992). Aster Aardvark’s alphabet adventures. New York, NY: HarperCollins.
  • This picture book is a good book to read-aloud. It features sound substitutions at the beginning of words.

Slepian, J. (2001). The hungry thing. New York, NY: Scholastic, Inc.
  • This book also features sound substitutions at the beginning of words. It helps students focus on the beginning sounds.

Gowler, R. (2001). Barnyard song. Hartford, CT: Atheneum.
  • If you want to focus on ending sounds, this book can help. Using it at as a read-aloud will allow you to find words that end the same.

Ahlberg, A. (1999). Monkey do. London: Walker Books Ltd.
  • This book also features words that end the same.

Professional Resources:

Pinnell, G., & Fountas, I. (2003). Phonics lessons grade 2. Portsmouth, NH: FirstHand.

Boushey, G., & Moser, J. (2009). The cafe book. Portland, ME: Stenhouse Publishers.
Reutzel, D., & Cooter, Jr., R. (1999). Strategies for reading assessment and instruction. Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc.

1 comment:

  1. Teach Your Child to Read Today!

    Reading is one of the most important skills one must master to succeed in life. It helps your child succeed in school, helps them build self-confidence, and helps to motivate your child. Being able to read will help your child learn more about the world, understand directions on signs and warnings on labels, allow them to discover reading as an entertainment, and help them gather information.

    Learning to read is very different from learning to speak, and it does not happen all at once. There is a steady progression in the development of reading ability over time. The best time for children to start learning to read is at a young age - even before they enter pre-school. Once a child is able to speak, they can begin developing basic reading skills. Very young children have a natural curiosity to learn about everything. They are naturally intrigued by the printed texts they see, and are eager to learn about the sounds made by those letters. You will likely notice that your young child likes to look at books and thoroughly enjoys being read to. They will even pretend to behave like a reader by holding books and pretend to read them.

    At what age can you start teaching a child to read? When they're babies? At 2 years old, 3, 4, or 5 years old, or wait until they're in school?

    If you delay your child's reading skill development until he or she enters school, you are putting your child at risk...

    Did you know that 67% of all Grade 4 students cannot read at a proficient level! According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, of those 67%, 33% read at just the BASIC level, and 34% CANNOT even achieve reading abilities of the lowest basic level!

    There is a super simple and extremely effective system that will even teach 2 and 3 year old children to read.

    This is a unique reading program developed by two amazing parents and reading teachers, Jim and Elena, who successfully taught their four children to read before turning 3 years old. The reading system they developed is so effective that by the time their daughter was just 4 years 2 months old, she was already reading at a grade 3 level. They have videos to prove it.

    >> Click here to watch the videos and learn more.

    Their reading system is called Children Learning Reading, and it is nothing like the infomercials you see on TV, showing babies appearing to read, but who have only learned to memorize a few word shapes. This is a program that will teach your child to effectively decode and read phonetically. It will give your child a big head start, and allow you to teach your child to read and help your child develop reading skills years ahead of similar aged children.

    This is not a quick fix solution where you put your child in front of the TV or computer for hours and hope that your child learns to "read"... somehow...

    This is a reading program that requires you, the parent, to be involved. But the results are absolutely amazing. Thousands of parents have used the Children Learning Reading program to successfully teach their children to read.

    All it takes is 10 to 15 minutes a day.

    >> Click here to get started right now. How to Teach a 2 or 3 Year Old to Read.

    ReplyDelete