Mummy And Me - Step 5

Teaching Tips

Use alphabet songs, chants and games whenever possible to introduce the alphabet.
• Emphasise you will reward them for clarity not speed.
• Only colour in the correct object word, rather than everything.
• Use sharp pencils not blunt crayons for the writing practice.
• When checking the homework, let the student choose the best letter and reward with a star/sticker/stamp etc.
• Read through the exercise carefully yourself before hand checking for difficult exercises eg ”C”, “J” or “V”.
• Preteach the vocabulary on the second page so they know “C” is for carrot not key or queen.
• Demonstrate how many letters to write with spaces between them.
• Only practice 5 or 6 letters per row and complete just two rows of letters writing practice.
• Focus on stroke order as the book doesn’t.
• Once they become fast at these, set two letters for homework / classwork.
• Practice all previous letters each time you use the book. eg if you are up to “P”, the children write A-Q next time they use the book.
• Make it more challenging for higher level students by being more strict with writing clarity.
• More focus on the letters, less on the activity.
• Try and review letters on the black board in later lessons.

More Teaching Tips

Joe took the time to send us these detailed teaching tips.

When we had the discussion some people did not rate the M5 book highly. My ST2 classes love this book it is also a favourite of their parents. I use it a lot for HW. Everyone is different, but this is how I use the book.

We practice letters in air before we start. We draw and count strokes. Then I show them on the book with my finger and I trace the letter. They do the 2 big examples all of the rest is Homework. They are required to do it at lest 5 times per line. During HW check the next lesson I circle all letters that are missing. I point out individually poor letters and what is wrong. Now all children like doing it and their parents like seeing this homework weekly.

On second page I show them the words and we spell out each word on the top line and bottom. We do it together. Then on the 2nd page they trace the letter neatly and connect using whatever methods they can figure out. Counting letters, guessing or trying to remember how we spelled is all ok. They do this in 2 minutes or less. Then I use the phonics sound and vocabulary word to get the correct circle.

Before they can put away the book they make a line before me I pick a word on the page and they must spell it out loud back to me. Example umbrella u m b r e l l a. They must spell the word before they can put away the book.

Sometimes we play spelling games where I show the words and they race to spell out loud. I also write words on the board for games and tell them D d and they turn to that page and look at the board and then look at the words and the picture combination and yell out answers.

As I said this book is much more popular with my students than even supertots. The parents really like getting tracing homework every week too. When I did Halloween lessons I did not do this book and the parents asked me why there was no tracing and writing, that is how much they like the book.

Further Feedback # 1

I think that their writing has improved and that the parents like it since it gets their children practising writing and not just colouring. I always get them to complete 2 lines at home for homework. When I check the homework, I correct what they are doing wrong and then get them to complete the 3rd line in class.

Further Feedback #2

I think that its fairly easy to teach. I first practice writing the large sample capital and lowercase letter with them that show the stroke order. I actually found that for some letters, the stroke orders are different than what I do but I don't really mind. When that happens I just show the children that it can also be written another way. I then go through the 2nd page with them, going over the vocabulary and getting them to tell me which capital letter words match with which lowercase letter words.

I then sound out the phonics of the bottom pictures and get them to tell me which one begins with the correct phonic sound. I usually only spend between 5 and 10 mins on this at the end of class. I found that if I don't do this with them in class, they end up just having their parents do it for them or not trying it at all because they felt it was too hard. However, I think by doing it with them quickly in class, they have improved their phonic recognition and then spend more time on it at home.
I think that its fairly easy to teach. I first practice writing the large sample capital and lowercase letter with them that show the stroke order. I actually found that for some letters, the stroke orders are different than what I do but I don't really mind. When that happens I just show the children that it can also be written another way. I then go through the 2nd page with them, going over the vocabulary and getting them to tell me which capital letter words match with which lowercase letter words.

I then sound out the phonics of the bottom pictures and get them to tell me which one begins with the correct phonic sound. I usually only spend between 5 and 10 mins on this at the end of class. I found that if I don't do this with them in class, they end up just having their parents do it for them or not trying it at all because they felt it was too hard. However, I think by doing it with them quickly in class, they have improved their phonic recognition and then spend more time on it at home.

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