I have several different short a phonics activities and games to share with you. These short vowel a activities and games engage your students through interactive, hands on, and fun ways to practice the short a sound! I hope that you will find this helpful when you sit down to plan out your short a learning!
Alright, let’s start planning!
Over the past several years I incorporated Phonics Friends into my phonics instruction. Phonics Friends are “friends” that help students remember phonics sounds and spelling rules. You can read more about Phonics Friends and what they are here.
SHORT VOWEL A PHONICS ACTIVITIES AND GAMES
Phonics Friend Scaredy Cat A is an anchor for short a learning. Scaredy Cat A helps students remember the short a sound. Students LOVE Scaredy Cat A! When Scaredy Cat A is between two consonants, “A” gets scared and says, “aaaaaa” as in the short a sound. Really play it up when introducing the sound and the short a story!
Pass the Hat is a whole group partner game where students pass a hat and pull out a picture card. If the picture card is a short a word, they keep the card. This game works great for hitting that objective on identifying sounds!
Applesauce Races is another whole group activity where students are applying their spelling by racing to spell the short a word that you call out on their table. This can also be done in table groups – the first table to spell the word correctly (or first) wins that round!
Mix and Find can be played as a whole group. I love this one! Each student will need a Mix and Find picture card. They will walk around the room and find a partner. If their partner has a card with the same word family as their card, then partners write their word on each others recording sheets. After writing their words, partners switch cards and repeat the steps! Interactive? Yes! Plus they are applying lots of different objectives through this game!
Trap the Rat is a funny one! This is a partner game where each player take turns spinning the spinner and moving their game board marker to the picture that matches the word they landed on. If the player lands on TRAP, they trap the other players game board marker (rat) with a Dixie cup. The player with the trapped rat, loses a turn.
Scaredy Cat A Hativity is an independent activity. Students sort the pictures based on whether or not they hear the short a sound in the picture.
Heads or Tails is another favorite activity. This is a partner game where one player is “heads” and the other is “tails”. For example, player 1 is heads and player 2 is tails. Player 1 continues flipping a coin until it lands on heads. When it lands on heads they spell a word under “heads”. Next, Player 2 goes and repeats the same steps – except that they are tails.
Fill the Gaps and What’s that Word are both independent practice activity. These also work well for formal assessments!
Ok, let’s look at some word work activities!
Puzzle Cards are always a good interactive way for students to practice building, reading, and recognizing words. There are 2 different puzzle options for students to use.
Build It mats are another great way to practice building words. These mats can be used with the paper letters that are pictured, or you can use magnetic and/or plastic letters.
These Word Cards can be placed in a pocket chart on the board for students to reference to if they need it when completing the Build It Mats.
Sound Dominos are just that – dominos! Students match the word to the picture.
Full House is a partner game where partners take turns spinning the spinner and finding a picture that matches that word family. The goal is to get a full house by getting 4 pictures in a row!
Write the Room gets students up and moving around the classroom. Tape the cards in your room and students walk around the room and record the answer on their recording sheet.
You can find all of the above activities plus lesson plans and more in my Short A Phonics Friend resource here.
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