Many of my struggling readers also have dexterity issues, so I am always developing multisensory activities that are fun for different ages that target specific skills and help with fine-motor skills. Here is an activity that focuses on short/closed vowel sounds and works developing a stronger pincer-grip.
You’ll need clothespins, scissors, glue, and a print out of the Brainspring Vowel Pictures (available in our Members’ Area of the website).
Begin by cutting out the vowel pictures. Next, hold each vowel picture over the part of the clothespin that opens and closes. This will help you decide where to cut your picture to make a “mouth”. You could add googly eyes and other decorations, if wanted.
Once you decide where to cut your vowel picture, cut the picture along that line. Then, glue the top half of the picture to one piece of the clothes pin and the other half to the bottom. Your clothespins should look something like this:
Vowel Intensive Activity
Once your clothespins are ready, give 2 or 3 different ones to the student. Say a short vowel sound and the student should repeat the sound while squeezing the clothespin. If you say the short A sound, the student would, of course, squeeze the apple clothespin. If you say the short E sound, the student would repeat it while squeezing the clothespin with the elephant on it. In addition to sounds, you could give the students words with short vowel sounds for the student to listen for and squeeze the corresponding clothespin.
Tammi Brandon, M.Ed., CDP
Tammi Brandon is a Master Instructor and Education Consultant with Brainspring Educator Academy.