Playdough and Phonics – suitable for years 1 & 2 and perhaps year 3 Mentor Rachel Pearson. Kuala Kangsar Workshop 8th March 2012.Multisensory ActivitiesChildren learn in different ways and what works for one child may be less effective for another. A varietyof multi-sensory activities enable teachers to cater for different learning styles, thereby meeting theneeds of all children.Such activities may include visual, auditory and kinaesthetic techniques. In other words, learning isreinforced by seeing, hearing and doing. For example, using playdough to introduce sounds or practiseshapes of sounds is a multisensory activity.Phonics Letter ShapesAs suggested in the year one text book children can make letter shapes usingplay dough. This activity helps them to recognise letter shapes, helps toimprove their dexterity and build up their hand muscles. It also helps them tounderstand the actual mechanics of the shapes; it creates a 3rd dimension whichcan help the children remember who to write the shapes. There are numerousways you can do this to suit children’s stage of development, ability anddexterity. When the children have made the series of letters that you want them to make you can do the following activities
Phonics ActivitiesActivity A Matching Letter ShapesChildren match the uppercase and lower case letters.Activity B Initial sounds 1. Children listen for the initial sound in words read by the teacher and make or set aside the playdough letter for that sound. 2. Alternatively teacher makes some playdough objects and says the name and asks children what is the initial sound. For example, Teacher, “What’s this?” Student, “Fish”. Teacher, “Well done, can you show me the first sound in the word fish, f, f, fish?” Student points to the playdough letter F on the desk. Teacher, “Correct, well done.” 3. You can also have the children suggest things that begin with a particular sound and have the children make those things. For example, Teacher, “Can anyone tell me anything that begins with the sound / æ /?” Student, “Apple” Teacher, “Excellent, a, a, apple. Now can you make an apple with your playdough”. 4. Whole class collaborative activity – playdough phonics alphabet. You can give each child a different sound and ask each child to make a thing that has that first sound. For example, you tell Hakim that his sound is A, and Hakim chooses to make an ant from playdough. Siti’s sound is S and she makes a spider from playdough.Activity C SegmentingTeacher says three sounds (CVC) or four sounds (CCVC/CVCC) and the childrentake the playdough letters for those sounds and set them out in order. Forexample, teacher says C – A – T and the children set out the letters cat inplaydough.Activity D BlendingTeacher then walks the children through blending those sounds (above) to read thewords.
Activity E Making Objects to match blended wordsChildren can then make a playdough object for that word, for example the childrenmake a cat.Activity F Rhyming WordsAsk children to add different beginning letters to endings such as “at” or “ag” tomake a game out of seeing how many different words they can create.Phonics FlagsMake phonics flags which can be stuck into play dough. Activity ideas are the same as above.Activity 1 Matching Letter ShapesChildren match the uppercase and lower case letter flags.Activity 2 Initial soundsChildren listen for the initial sound in words read by the teacher and stick the flag for that sound in theplaydough.Activity 3 SegmentingTeacher says three sounds (CVC) or four sounds (CCVC/CVCC) and the children have to place the flagswith those sounds into play dough balls.Activity 4 BlendingAs aboveActivity 5 Rhyming Words FlagsMake flags with blends such as ‘at’, ‘it’ ‘ag’ and get children to use their flags to make words like cat, sit,bag, and so on.Phonics flags adapted from Jan Brett, http://www.janbrett.com/index.htmlPlaydough Writing BoardChildren make a large flat board from playdough which they use as a writingboard. At higher levels they can use a pencil to write in the playdough. At lowerlevels they can press letter shapes/moulds into the clay, as below.Playdough as a Vocabulary AidUse playdough to help reinforce vocabulary like colour words.Use playdough to make numbers.Use playdough to make shapes to reinforce names of shapes (make a circle, make a square, etc.)Some good ideas here (also for using playdough for maths)http://www.k-3teacherresources.com/play-dough-recipe.html