Overview of Grade K Units
Unit 1: Making Friends with Letters
Over the course of this unit, you’ll immerse your children in letters and sounds, rhyme and word play. Your kids will grow in leaps and bounds. This unit supports a variation of Patricia Cunningham’s beloved “Star Names” unit. On almost every day throughout the unit, the class will study another name. You’ll use your children’s names, and the letters in those names, to teach phonics concepts. Over the course of the unit you will build a name wall which will eventually contain all of the names in your class.
Unit 2: Word Scientists
In this unit, you will focus on letter knowledge and letter-sound correspondence, phonological awareness, and high-frequency words. You’ll work with kids to study the alphabet chart, to use the alphabet to write, and to study and use high-frequency words to read and write. In each bend, you’ll introduce songs, games, poems, and nursery rhymes that you’ll revisit again and again to support phonemic awareness and early reading concepts.
Unit 3: Word-Part Power
You’ll start this unit with a bend that help all your students make that giant step from writing labels to writing sentences. In Bend II, kids learn to use word-part power to grasp the power of phonograms. We also introduce the word wall to support kids in learning a growing number of high-frequency words. In Bend III, students learn that the words at, in, it, and an have word power and can be made into lots of other words. We introduce digraphs (sh, th, wh, ch) and use them with word parts to make even more words.
Unit 4: Vowel Power
At the start of this unit, we add a new super power: vowel power! You will introduce new high-frequency words, am and did, that further students’ study of short A and short I. As the first bend gives way to the second bend, you’ll continue the puzzling work of distinguishing short-vowel sounds from one another. In the third bend, students will study vowels in words that are longer than CVC words. You’ll teach children how knowledge of CVC words is foundational to writing any words they choose.
Unit 5: Playing with Phonics
This unit is designed to be whimsical, experimental, joyful and most of all, fun, as students are introduced to blends and think about not only what sounds letters make, but the instances in which those sounds are changed, muted, or manipulated by neighbouring letters. This unit challenges students to to tackle longer words and to begin thinking about the sounds that they hear in word parts or phonograms. The unit culminates with phonics projects that draw on all the phonics work children have engaged in during their kindergarten year.