* Students who are “stuck” at CVC levels

progressWondering how to help students who are “stuck” at the consonant-vowel-consonant level of decoding? Here are some suggestions:

  • Make sure you are addressing any phonological weaknesses.
  • Create your own stories using the student’s interests; research suggests we remember what’s more interesting to us.
  • Provide associations for word families to improve recall.  The -at family could be popular (“where it’s AT!”) and the -ot family could be the bossy one (“You ought to do this!”).  Have students create images to accompany the stories.
  • Consult with your school psychologist.  Does a formal evaluation suggest that this student will need more time than most?  Is there a related language issue?  Cognitive impairment?
  • Make sure your student understands the rules for CVC syllables. Film your student “teaching” that rule and share with other kids.
  • Consider moving to easy open syllables.
  • Provide online practice with a program like Explode the Code.
  • Provide extra encouragement, because this has got to be frustrating for the student. Create a digital portfolio, including videos of the student reading successfully.  Graph every little skill that led to your student’s current accomplishments (letter names, consonant sounds, vowel sounds. blending two sounds, etc.).