Announcing....Hello Phonological Awareness Curriculum

I'm proud to say that I've teamed up with a great teacher and friend to create a Common Core aligned, read-aloud (text) based phonological awareness curriculum.   We have written original sets of lessons (one complete lesson is a week in length)...phononological awareness activities...which we call with kids "listening games" to accompany and implement after reading popular Kindergarten and first grade read-aloud titles.    We all know the importance of teaching phonological awareness and it's critical role in reading success is well documented in the reading research.  Phonological awareness (the bigger umbrella term for which phonemic awareness falls under) is the single greatest predictor of future reading success--and phonological awareness being the 16 subskills that comprise it.  Teaching it though on the other hand, often falls to the wayside with other important and well-documented instructional practices as well, like higher order thinking....sort of like, not eating right when we KNOW we should.   I'm not sure why we do or don't do the instructional strategies that have proven to work, but often, we do.  IF one of the reasons is, that we don't know WHAT to do everyday for 10-15 to teach, reinforce and practice phonological awareness skills, then we have created a solution.  We have solved that problem for you.  No need to look any further. 

Last year I did a research study for my Master's program in this area.  I compared two instuctional curriculums for teaching phonological awareness daily to students using two whole in-tact Kindergarten classrooms at my school. (Thank you WCPSS, for seeing the value in teacher practitioner research!) The control class taught phonological awareness for 10-15 everyday using the Micheal Heggerty Phonemic Awareness Curriculum and the experimental group taught phonological awareness for 10-15 everyday using the Hello Literacy Phonological Awareness Curriculum.  The results, even after one month were amazing! I will not bore you with my 52 page research study, of which I got IRB-approval and an act of county congress to do the study, but after these results, I could not, NOT WRITE the rest of the curriculum.  I truly believe it could have a huge impact of on our very youngest readers...if folks buy it and use it.  That simple.

Phonological Awareness vs. Phonemic Awareness
These two terms are often used interchangeably in the reading research literature.  It is accepted to use them synonymously. However, there is a difference between the two terms.  Phonemic awareness is just that…awareness at the PHONEME level.  A phoneme is a single unit of sound, regardless of the number of letters in the single sound.  Here are a few examples of phonemic level sounds; /m/ as in made, /th/ as in thing, /dge/ as in bridge making the /j/ sound, or /ed/ as in washed making the /t/ sound. Phonemic awareness falls under the umbrella of phonological awareness, which covers awareness at the phoneme level, the syllable level, the word level and the sentence level.

Phonological Awareness vs. Phonics
Phonological awareness and phonics are two terms that are also often confused, but there is a clear difference between the two.  The main way they are the same is they both deal with letters and their corresponding sounds. However, phonological awareness is sound only, without looking at print, only listening to sounds and producing sounds orally. Once you add letters for the child to look at when doing the phonological awareness work; the task becomes a phonics task.   Phonological awareness, phonemic awareness, phonics (and fluency) are now housed in the Common Core standards as Foundational Reading Skills.  The lessons created here in this Hello Phonological Awareness Curriculum, are strictly phonological awareness.  We have meticulously gone through the Common Core standards for Reading Foundational Skills for both Kindergarten and First Grade, and identified the skills and learning outcomes that students are expected to know and do in the area of Reading Foundational Skills, related directly to phonological awareness.  In addition to the standards (and skills embedded within them), there are also a few additional phonological awareness skills outlined in Appendix A of the Common Core document for ELA.  The skills included in Appendix A that are not actual standards with numbers but are included in the lessons here are; Counting Spoken Words in a Sentence, Syllable Blending & Pronouncing, Phoneme Alliteration & Discrimination, and Initial Phoneme Deletion.   We have included them in this curriculum, for a total of 16 essential phonological awareness skills.
 We have created the following correlation table to show you how the Common Core standards for Reading Foundational Skills correlate to each phonological awareness skills embedded with the wording of the standards and the ELA appendix for the “general progression of phonological awareness skills (PreK-1).”


We have included the artic word lists we created and used to develop the curriculum in the event that you might want to use these words to develop vocabulary, language and phonics skills in other areas of your literacy block.  Any letter or letters inside these symbols  /  / means that the sound of the letter or letters should be made, not the letter name itself.

The listening games themselves are meant to be quick, verbal exchanges between teacher and students.  That is, the pace should be faster rather than slower. For each skill, the teacher “script” is indicated.  Whatever it says inside the quotation marks is what the teacher should say to the students, using the words listed within each section. 
I've put one lesson (which lasts a week) up for FREE, because I really want you to use it in your class for a week and see how you like it.   We're so sure you'll love it, that we think you'll come back and purchase the monthly bundles.  Check out our page HERE.


9 comments:

  1. Wow! I am so excited to try out your sample. I have added your items to my ever-growing wish list. Will your sale last through Tuesday?

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  2. I now use the Michael Haggerty's program daily as a warm up for kindergarten,you've got my curiosity as compared to your new curriculum. I also saw where you will be speaking in Arkansas. I live in Missouri and would to here one of your conferences. Any other info you can give?

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    1. Vicki...Springdale Elementary has hired me for a one day staff development. I will fly into XNA if that helps. Take care,
      Jen

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    2. Listen, I'm not trying to dog Micheal Heggerty, I've been promoting his curriculum for years and we have 14 copies in our building that get used every day. BUT now, I have to say that mine is better, updated to the common core, text-based, and fresh and new! We are replacing MH in our school with the Hello PA Curriculum! Thanks, Jen

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    3. Hi, Jen.
      I've used Heggerty, which I think is pretty good, but am planning on trying your sample lesson when school is back in session next week.
      Until then, I can't help but be curious about the results of your research study, and about how your program is different and why you think it was so much more effective. Thanks! I'm a big fan of your blog!

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    4. Hi! Thanks for your comment. Although I really would like to publish my study in a journal, the main difference between my stuff and MH is the words and phrases for the PA skill work comes from the words and phrases from the read-aloud. For language challenged students, the context of the story and the meaning of the words and phrases is important for these students. Most phonemic awareness activities, including MH, use random generic words (from air) to practice phonemic awareness skills with, ex., "pig/cot/pen....which words have the same beginning sound?"...where a pig, a cot and pen have nothing to do with each other, (not to mention most kids, even ESL, probably don't know what a cot is) and although PA is not really about meaning of words, my study showed that this variable had a positive correlation. I had to create digital presentation for my results, I used Smilebox. Here is the link: http://secure.smilebox.com/ecom/openTheBox?sendevent=4d6a4d344e7a6b774f54493d0d0a&sb=1

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  3. I just downloaded the sample and can't wait to try it next week. I'm always impressed by your knowledge and energy.

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  4. Hello Jennifer,
    I am a third grade teacher and have a student who struggles with decoding b/c she does not have strong segmenting and letter sound skills. I have a tutor coming in to help her two days a week and am thinking about using your curriculum during that time. Would you recommend that or do you think that it is primarily for K-1 students?

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