Saturday, September 20, 2008

About Soundabet Flashcards

Soundabet Flash Cards are for showing your class the Soundabet Sounds one at a time.

The Flash Cards are similar to the Display Cards in terms of their images and content. Display Cards are meant to present the Soundabet all together as a whole.

By contrast, Flash Cards are intended for a deeper journey into each Soundabet sound individually.

I've found what seems to work best is to introduce just one card each day beginning with the letter A. I begin early in the kindergarten year with A.

On each successive day, I do a quick review of all the letters presented beginning at A and going through in ABC order until we reach the letter of the day. I deliberately scramble the cards we have yet to look at so that we see (very briefly, and in passing) other letters.

Thus, let's say we're on the nineteenth day of the program and letter S is the one we're going to talk about today. We'll review the first eighteen letters quickly, A, B, C, D, E, and so on all the way to R. But guess what? The card behind R is not S! It might be any letter. I just quickly name it and keep going until S finally turns up. (I've put S near the end of the stack so we have to look through almost all the remaining cards to find it.)

When we finally find the letter of the day we sing it, then tell it's story.

First Sing the Song

You can use them in any way you wish, but I suggest singing a song set to the tune of "London Bridge" to introduce each sound. The song for the card pictured above goes like this:

Look at the /s/ we hear in soap,

/s/ /s/ /s/ soap,
/s/ /s/ /s/ soap
Look at the /s/ we hear in soap,

/s/ /s/ /s/

Next Tell the Story

I've written story starters for each of the Flash Cards. The purpose of the stories is to explain why the upper and lowercase letter forms sometimes match in form (as they do with Cc, Oo, Pp,
Ss, Uu, Vv, Ww, Xx, Yy, and Zz).

As you will see in the stories, the King invents the uppercase forms while the Queen invents the lowercase forms. On days they get along, they invent very similar forms. But as couples sometimes do, they sometimes have difficulty getting along with each other. On those days, they invent forms that differ in form (as with the rest of the letters, Aa, Bb, Dd, Ee, Ff, Gg, and so on).

These story starters used to be printed on the backs of the Flash Cards. Now, to keep the price of the Flash Cards from becoming astronomically high, I just e-mail the story starters to you.

The story starters are intended as just that: a jumping off place. What I really hope is that you will use your imagination to add detail and fill in the narrative with details that fit your students well.

As time allows, I will post here the stories as I tell them to my students. They're more fully developed stories. I'll begin with the story for the letter Aa.

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