Initial Sound Speller


The standards correlation for this activity is coming soon!

In Initial Sound Speller, students choose the missing initial sound that correctly spells each word.

Try Initial Sound Speller

with a sample word list!

Note: Although this activity is designed for the grade levels above, it can also be used as a remediation or enrichment activity at any grade level with an appropriate word list.

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Building Literacy

  • Foundational Skills
  • Spelling
  • Phonics

What? Phonics and spelling instruction go hand in hand, and are fundamental in building literacy skills. More...Less

In phonics, students study the relationship between letters (graphemes) and their sounds (phonemes). Students first learn phonetic patterns, which can then be used to decode words during reading or encode words during writing.

When? Students begin to study phonics in kindergarten when they are taught to match letter names of the alphabet to their sounds. More...Less

After mastering the alphabet, kindergarten and first grade students are exposed to basic phonetic rules and patterns, like short vowel sounds and word families. Throughout elementary school, students learn increasingly difficult phonetic patterns. The goal is for students to have solid phonetic skills well before they leave elementary school.

How to teach: Because words and sounds are read to students, Initial Sound Speller can be used for independent phonics practice during literacy centers. More...Less

It can also be assigned as homework. When explicitly introducing and teaching a phonics pattern, teachers can use Initial Sound Speller as a whole group lesson. Teachers can create word lists that help students practice initial sounds in any word pattern. These words can support the skills being taught in small group lessons. Many of these lists can be found in Teaching Resources under English/Language Arts.

Play to learn: In Initial Sound Speller, students choose the correct letter(s) and corresponding sound to complete the word. More...Less

The word is read aloud, but the initial letters are not displayed. Students roll over the four choices to hear the sound each makes before picking the correct letter/sound combination. Students can also choose to hear the word in context or the word read aloud again. If students answer incorrectly, they will receive immediate feedback and are encouraged to try again until they pick the correct sound.

Teaching Tip: Initial Sound Speller is perfect to review weekly phonic patterns. The audio features are great for English Language Learners (ELLs).

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