It’s crazy but true! If you teach a student 10 sight words, they can read 10 words… BUT, if you teach that same child 10 letter sounds, they can read THOUSANDS of words. That’s the power of phonics! And these beginning sound cards a playful, hands-on way to help kids practice just that.

Snag your set below and then request your invite to The Reading Roadmap so you can get my easy-to-use system for reaching EVERY reader in class.

Teaching Letter Sounds

Sometimes the simplest little tweaks make the biggest impact and that’s certainly true here. Instead of calling letters by their names, research has shown that you can help students by referring to their sounds every chance you get.

For instance, when a child is trying to spell the word CAN, you might ask, “What sounds do you need?” instead of asking what letters they need.

Or when you’re playing with alphabet magnets, you could ask the child to show you the /b/ (sound) instead of B (letter).

It’s a simple little tweak in focus – you’re just referring to the sounds instead of names – but it will help students memorize those sounds a lot more quickly…

And THAT means they’ll learn to read FASTER!

Beginning Sound Cards

These beginning sound cards use the same logic! They force students to really hone in on those sounds letters make and they introduce words that start with those sounds.

To play, place the cards in a stack next to your basket of alphabet magnets.

Each child will grab a card, say the word shown, and then find the beginning sound they hear.

For example, if a student grabbed CAKE, she might say:

“CAKE. Cccccc-ake. That starts with /c/.”

Then she’d grab the C magnet and place it in the empty box.

Students will continue picking, reading and matching until they’ve worked their way through every card in the stack.

How to Differentiate

These beginning sound cards are really easy to differentiate!

For new readers, give them 5 or 6 cards to focus on at a time. When they’re finished, challenge them to brainstorm other words that start with the same beginning sound. For instance, for the letter C, they might suggest cat, cup, candy and corn.

For kids who are ready to be stretched, give them all of the cards at once. Then challenge them to use the cards to sound out words. For example, they might use the beginning sound cards to spell CAN or TEN.

Snag Your Set

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  1. Hello! I love the cheerful, engaging pictures on your beginning sounds cards!

    Can you please tell me if the picture for letter /e/ is “eat?”

    The others vowels are short sounds (apple, igloo, octopus and umpire) and I’m trying to determine what the picture is if it, too, begins with the “short e” sound?

    Thank you!!

    1. Hi Dana! I am so glad that you love the beginning sound cards! Yep, you are correct, the /e/ is “eat”!

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