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Excel Orton Gillingham sight words using blending board

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You probably know about the blending boards. The tool that is widely used for creating multi-coloured rolags for spinning. But, are you aware of its use for learning phonics fluency? Sounds absurd, but bear with us because we aren’t lying.

Some professionals in the special education industry have repurposed the blending board for the good of pupils with learning disabilities, such as dyslexia. Blending boards can be used for learning orton gillingham sight words quite effectively.

How to learn Orton Gillingham red words through blending boards?

To do this activity, we need a blending board first. Its great if you have one but if you don’t, then you can purchase it from amazon or make one at your home. Maketaketeach.com did post a DIY blending board. Do check it out.

Now, that we have blending board, we need flash cards with alphabet written on it. You can buy or just make one yourself. Cut out rectangles from white chart paper. We will practice the sight words in three stages, so the dimensions of the rectangle will be different for different stages.

You can try this activity with different length of words, but for here, we will practice 3 letter words with CVC (Consonant-Vowel-Consonant) template. You could make up words for this or prepare a deck of cards by selecting from the list of 100 Orton Gilligham red words.

Stage 1

  • Prepare 5 packs each of C-V-C spots. That would be 15 cards in total.
  • For 1st consonant series, Choose black color for letters. Draw a green underline with arrow pointing east at the right extreme end.
orton gillingham blending board sight words stage 1
  • For Vowel series, Choose blue color for letters. Draw a green underline with arrow pointing east at the right extreme end.
  • For 2nd consonant series, Choose black color for letters. Draw a green underline with dot (fullstop) at the right extreme end.
  • Place each pack on the blending board as per the template. First ask students to what sound each letter makes. Do it 2-3 times, then ask them to say the complete word. If the word is an actual english word then the student have to give the thumbs up and if not, then thumbs down.
  • Now, drop the consonant in the first spot and again repeat the process. Similarly drop the cosonant in the third spot and repeat the process. After this, drop the vowel in the second spot.
  • Continue the above process untill no card is left.
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Stage 2

  • Prepare 5 packs each of C-VC spots. That would be 10 cards in total.
  • For 1st consonant series, Choose black color for letters. Draw a green underline with arrow pointing east at the right extreme end.
orton gillingham blending board sight words stage 2
  • For Vowel-Consonant combo series, Choose blue color for vowels and black for consonants. Draw a green underline with dot (fullstop) at the right extreme end.
  • Place each pack on the blending board as per the template. First ask students to what sound letters on each pack makes. Do it 2-3 times, then ask them to say the complete word. If the word is an actual english word then the student have to give the thumbs up and if not, then thumbs down.
  • Now, drop the consonant in the first spot and again repeat the process. Similarly drop the vowel-cosonant combo afterwards and repeat the process.
  • Continue the above process untill no card is left.

Stage 3

  • Prepare 5 packs each of CVC spots. That would be 5 cards in total.
  • In this combo, Choose black color for both the consonants and blue for vowels. Draw a green underline with dot(fullstop) at the right extreme end.
  • Place each pack on the blending board as per the template. First ask students to what sound the pack makes. Do it 2-3 times, then ask them to say the complete word. If the word is an actual english word then the student have to give the thumbs up and if not, then thumbs down.
  • Now, drop the card and again repeat the process. Continue the above process untill no card is left.
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Try the activity with different orton gillingham sight words. Choose template of your choice. Set different stages as you wish to teach the students. One up the level after each exercise. Try with colors so that it doesn’t become monotonous.

This post is inspired from the Julie Van Alst, a special educator and writer at makemeteach.com . She also have a youtube channel that you can follow for similar content.

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