Teaching the letter of the week in special ed

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Do you use a letter of the week strategy in your classroom?   After years of tweaking, I came up with a lesson plan that was not only was engaging but helped students make real world connections. In addition, having a set lesson plan I could use again and again for each letter greatly decreased my stress level and saved me tons of time. I knew repetition was going to an important part to my teaching.  This repetition was necessary for my student retention, but it had to have some variation to keep their attention.

Keep reading!! You can download a complete letter of the week unit for free at the bottom of this post.

1. Start each lesson with a song

I started each lesson the same way:  with a song.  Each student had an alphabet chart so they could follow along.

My favorite song to use was Dr. Jean’s I’ve Got the Whole Alphabet in my Mouth.

2. Read a book on the letter of the week

Next, we would read a book I would create myself.  Theses are simple to make yourself in PowerPoint. There are some great places to find free images. My favorite is pixabay.com.

By the end of the week, the students could read it along with me.

3. Complete a graphic organizer

After the story, we would start to fill a large circle map for the letter of the week.  I drew a large circle on poster board, added Velcro, and using a post-it note, placed the letter in the middle.  Students would then take turns bringing up pictures that started with that letter.

letter of the week circle map pictures

4. Letter of the week group activity

Next, I would choose a group activity based on the day of the week:

  • Monday:  Scavenger Hunt
  • Tuesday:  Pick up the Plates Game
  • Wednesday:  Art Activity
  • Thursday: Cooking Activity
  • Friday:  Social Skills Activity

Each of my units contains each of these activities for that particular letter.

5. Letter of the week individual activity

After the group activity, students would do an individual activity, again, depending on the day of the week.

  • Monday:  Circle map
  • Tuesday:  Sorting activity
  • Wednesday:  Preposition activity
  • Thursday: Letter collage
  • Friday:  Assessment and Social Skills activity

Again, each of my units has an individual activity for each day of the week. You can get a free copy of the preposition activity for the letter M here.

6. End the lesson with some technology

Finally, I would end the lesson with some technology.  We loved using Youtube and Starfall.com.  There are so many cute songs and videos you can quickly find about the alphabet.

Get a free COMPLETE letter of the week unit by clicking the button below.

If you would like to see if this method works for you, click below to download a FREE letter of the week unit to try by clicking the button below.  It includes all the above activities and lesson plans.

You can also watch this FREE 4 minute how to video on utilizing these materials:

youtube cover

Christa

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