The following 3 items are our gifts to you!
Learning to read and spell English may seem very difficult because there don’t seem to be any consistent patterns or “rules.” But in English, there actually are several more phonics “rules” than are normally taught in school. With them, our language becomes more logical and much easier to master. For example, what do the letter combinations: “ck,” “tch,” and “dge” have in common? For the answer, look at generalizations 3-5 on this download.
Spelling in English can be complex, because although there are only 44 different sounds, they can be spelled with approximately 70 different letter combinations. Students need to have a basic understanding of these sound-letter relationships, called “phonics.” However, most teachers were not taught phonics when they were students, or even as preservice teachers. This chart makes it much clearer and will become a reference you will use over and over again.
Introductory Kit of Our Rainbow Cards (Hands-on Manipulatives for Phonics)
Phonics Set 1 – Consonant-Vowel-Consonant (CVC) Words
This set includes:
- Directions for the Use and Easy Storage of Rainbow Cards manipulatives.
- 1 Blackline Master (for green sheet) of the 16 most common initial consonants (onsets*).
- 1 Blackline Master (for red sheet) of the 6 single vowels.
- 1 Blackline Master (for bright yellow sheet) of the 16 most common consonant endings that follow single vowels.
- Directions for playing “Double-It,” a game for all ages to practice the skill of blending sounds to form real and nonsense words.
(See below if you want to add Set 2 for a complete set of consonant onsets* (single consonants, blends, and digraphs).
Our Rainbow Cards work very well in the classroom for both whole group and small group applications. They work well at home as well.
Many struggling readers have trouble in the area of phonological processing. In other words, they have difficulty blending individual sounds into words and also breaking words apart into sounds. Rainbow Cards allow students to practice these skills in game formats that are both encouraging and engaging.
Each new phonics concept is introduced using a different color (vowels and vowel units*** are usually a shade of red). Each Blackline Master contains 16 squares. You’ll need Set 1 for use with most of the other sets. Set 2 completes all possible beginning consonants (onsets*) and is needed with the other sets as well.
Please note: The sets all provide “Blackline Masters,” which is teacher language for a black-and-white hard copy that you can take to a copy machine, put in the color of paper indicated, and print off as many copies as you need of each sheet. If you are using these sets at home, you may choose to insert color into the table on each page and print them at home using a color copy machine. However, it would probably be less expensive to go to an office supply store that does copying and have them print the sheets for you on the correctly-colored paper. You also might want to ask them to use card stock–the cards will last a lot longer.
The following great resources from Rainbow Readers may be purchased from our internet store at www.help4readers.com.
(Our internet store website is completely secure and has 100% PCI/CISP Certification as a Level I Service Provider.)
Book by Carol S. Fitzpatrick – “Help, I Can’t Read!” How to Respond to Struggling Readers in Your Classroom.
This book (440 pages) is filled with many successful strategies, methods, and games that Carol has used to help hundreds of students improve their reading. They are simple, effective, research-based and geared for use in the general education classroom. The book was written for teachers, but has much to offer for the parent with a struggling reader.
More Rainbow Cards – Phonics Kits
We highly recommend you purchase this kit to have a complete set of beginning letters, blends, and digraphs for all the other sets. It also contains all the endings found in Consonant-vowel-consonant words. It includes:
- Valuable information on which sequence to use for introducing all the alphabet letters with tips on how to integrate writing, reading, and spelling.
- Blackline Masters for all additional beginning consonants and consonant blends (3 more for green sheets), another copy of single vowels (1 for red sheet), and ending consonant blends (1 for yellow sheet).
- Directions for playing “Slymin’ Rhymin,’” a game for all ages to practice blending different onsets* in front of one rime** at a time to form words families.
This set includes:
- 3 Blackline Masters (for peach-colored sheets) for all letter combinations using a V-C-e pattern (examples: abe, ene, ipe, ole, ute).
- Directions for playing “Rope-a-Dope,” a game for all ages to practice blending rhyming word pairs that end in magic “e.”
This set includes:
- 1 Blackline Master (for orange sheet) for letter combinations “ng” and “nk” (examples: sing, sang, sung, sink, sank, sunk).
- Directions for playing “Verb Volleys,” a game for all ages to practice blending words ending in “ng” and “nk.”
*Onset = all consonants before the vowel unit (example: str in “straight”)**Rime = the vowels and consonants following the onset. (example: aight in “straight”). ***Vowel Unit = all letters used to form the vowel sound (example: a in “rat,” ai in “rail,” aigh in “straight”). ****Homonym = Two words that sound alike, but have different meanings and spellings (example: “sail” and “sale”). *****Phonogram = a letter or group of letters that combine to make only one sound (example: the e in “he” is a phonogram, but so is igh in “light”). Please note: When you download any of the materials offered on this website or from our internet store, you have permission to copy them for use at home or in your personal classroom. Any other use is a violation of copyright privileges. Thank you. We hope you and your students enjoy them!