Look up. It’s an airplane. Today we are building phonemic awareness with paper airplanes. I think I hear some cheers out there.
Phonemic awareness is the ability to hear and orally produce letter sounds. For example, the word “sun” has three phonemes /s/ /u/ /n/. Children with a strong phonemic awareness will generally find learning to read easier.
The neat thing about helping kids develop phonemic awareness is that we do it through fun and playful activities. In today’s case, we are flying paper airplanes.
Airplane Flying Phonemic Awareness
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Getting Ready to Play
All you need for this activity is a paper airplane for each child. You can make your own or use this cool book, 100 Paper Planes to Fold and Fly, that is full of colorful paper sheets and folding instructions.
It’s time to fly. Let each child pick a destination he would like to fly to. Maybe it’s Hawaii, Alaska, Italy or Canada (all places that I would like to go). As your child releases the plane, he should say the beginning sound of the destination. Have him continue to repeat the sound until his plane lands. So, if he chose Hawaii before “takeoff,” he would say /h/ /h/ /h/ /h/ h/ and so on until the plane lands. You do want to make sure the child does not add extra phonemes to the beginning sound. Check out this video for more.
You can also select a destination if your child is having trouble thinking of a location to fly. Repeat until your child tires of the activity.
Looking for a way to use paper airplanes with a math twist? Check out The Educators’ Spin On It idea, Airplane Number Games.
MORE PHONEMIC AWARENESS IDEAS