Yesterday I wrote about our adjective lesson with pumpkins. One of the sprouts I visited to help with his descriptive word was Billy. As I squatted down next to Billy’s seat, I glanced at his pumpkin… it was a big ol’ mess of a scribbles, so I wasn’t quite sure how he was going to describe his pumpkin.

“Billy, what adjective do you want to write for your pumpkin?” I asked.

He looked at the picture and then back at me.

“Scary,” he replied.

I couldn’t agree more.

“All right, ‘scary’ – What sound do you hear at the beginning?” I prodded.

“/S/, /S/, ‘Snake,’” he said as he wrote the letter S. We’ve been chanting the sounds every day (sometimes more than once) and most children can identify a sound and write the corresponding letter without naming it – amazing.

We continued with each sound in ‘scary’ until the final one.

“Scar-EE,” I said, emphasizing the last sound.

“What sound do you hear?” I asked, fully expecting Billy to write the letter E.

He wrote a Y.

“Wow, you know it actually is a Y, but in this word it makes the /E/ sound, how did you know that?” I wondered.

“It’s just like the Y at the end of my name,” Billy replied as if it were as plain as the nose on my face.

I got chills when he said that. I called Mrs. D. over and had him explain it to him. I then looked up at her and said, “Genius.” She nodded in aggrement.


Tina said...

I love reading your blog.
I highly dislike that you changed the feed for it and now I don't get the whole thing in my reader.
I hope you change it back...because usually I don't follow blogs I can't read in entirety in my reader. :(

Scott said...

I love it when those connections happen! Yay Billy!

Knaus said...

Amazing. Kids get it, more often then we give them credit for. Well done. I want to be a fly on the wall in your classroom someday and just watch the two of you work with your sprouts.

Deborah said...

A child's name has so much meaning when it comes to learning!

halpey1 said...

@Tina - I have no clue what I did or how to fix it, but I will investigate and try to fix it. :)

Miss Farah said...

That's a smart kid!
I love your blog i discovered it through teacher lingo, keep it up

Erin said...

Another vote for trying to change the feed back! I like to have it in my reader! Love the blog :)

Jan said...

Me too. Change the feed back.

halpey1 said...

I THINK I changed the feed, but I'm not positive... to be totally honest, I'm not sure what changed in the first place, please let me know if it's 'back' to normal. :)

Old Lady Love said...

There is no doubt young Master Billy is a smart lad; what struck me are two things, though. First, you helped him make those connections by explicit phonemic awareness instruction, and second, back in my day (yes, old lady Love here), we were also explicitly taught aeiou and sometimes y. This was 1970-1971. My much younger collegues who are the product of whole language lament the fact they were never taught about sounds, or word "chunking" or looking for patterns. And now I'm faced with about 130 13-14 year olds who cannot read well or recognize what we would consider high frequency words.

Long comment short: Keep doing what you're doing. I wish more teachers would embrace the need for both explicit and whole instructional methods when the learning calls for it.