Using Show and Tell to Teach Phonics

Show and Tell is one of those old school teaching ideas that has been around forever! It sticks around though because it is so much fun! Kids LOVE bringing their stuff from home to school AND telling you ALL about it! I'm going to share how I use Show and Tell to teach phonics! : )

Every Friday is Show and Tell Day in my classroom. Show and Tell is based on what letter we are learning that week. Last week we studied the letter L, so my students could bring something that started with the letter L. I communicate about Show and Tell in my weekly newsletter. 

I also send home a reminder note on Thursday. Then Friday is show time! Each child comes to the front of the room and shares their item with us. This is a great importunity to hit some of those listening and speaking TEKS too! I keep a list going on the board of the items that were brought and then I take each child's picture holding the item. After they have shared, their item goes back in their backpack so it is safe and doesn't get them into trouble ; )

Here are some of the items that were brought for Show and Tell Letter L this week...

After everyone has shared their item, we have a really nice list of L words going and we are ready to write. Students have to tell me three words that start with the letter L and have three pictures to match. This writing is really meaningful because they are writing about real items they have just experienced. When kids are struggling to think of words I can also say things like, "Do you remember what Bob brought? What about Helen?" rather than "What starts with the letter L?"

This is a great example of what I am looking for! This friend only knows that each of these words start with the letter L. You can see that his pictures match the word he is trying to spell too! This is huge for the 3rd week of Kindergarten!!! As the year progresses, instead of writing three words with three pictures, we will start writing sentences: L is for ___________. 

Show and Tell is really fun too because the kids can be creative! One of my kids  brought pictures of when they were little because little starts with L! 

After Show and Tell is over, I use the pictures to create a class book based on the letter we were studying. This is a great way to review the letter the following week and remind students of the experience. This week I chose to make to the book using I like _______ sentences. I chose to use I like sentences because those are the popcorn words (sight) words we have been working on. Here is what a page in the book looks like:

At the top of every page, I put the child's name. We have still been working on name recognition so this is just another way to tie in that skill! : ) Then the sentence says I like (whatever they brought). 

We will reread this book this week and discuss L words one more time and then the book will join the classroom library. The kids LOVE reading any book that features them!!! I use Powerpoint to make the books and it's really easy to duplicate the slide and just change the picture and words. It takes me about 15 minutes to create a book. The time is well worth it! : )

Tomorrow we will start the letter 0 and focus on popcorn words: see and the. So our book may sound look this next week...
I see the octopus.
I see the olive.
I see the orange.

I also want to start taking a picture of the chart we create for each letter and including it in the book as well. That way my wall space is spared, but they still have access to an anchor chart we created TOGETHER for each letter! 

Show and Tell has really made Phonics meaningful in my classroom! I hope you can use some of these ideas! : )


  1. Love all these ideas! Pinning for future use!



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