Evaluation for 4.3
Materials provide explicit systematic instruction in phonetic knowledge and opportunities for students to practice both in and out of context (K-2).
The materials provide explicit systematic instruction in phonetic knowledge and opportunities for students to practice both in and out of context. The materials contain a research-based sequence of grade-level foundation skills instruction and opportunities for student practice to achieve grade-level mastery. Materials systematically develop grade-level phonics patterns addressed in the Grade 2 English Language Arts and Reading TEKS, and there are opportunities for students to apply grade-level phonetic knowledge to connected texts and tasks. There is explicit instruction in grade-level high-frequency words and sufficient chances to read the words both in and out of context.
Examples include but are not limited to:
The introduction of the “Teacher’s Edition” states: “Wonders offers a thorough grounding in foundational skills, from the first steps in phonemic awareness and concepts of print, through sophisticated academic vocabulary and advanced morphological analysis.” Many experts are quoted throughout the introduction pages, such as Dr. Vicki Gibson. Materials reference white papers describing the research basis behind the creation of the materials. The scope and sequence shows that phonics skills grow in complexity and spiral as the year progresses. It also showcases the sequence of high-frequency words that are introduced throughout the year.
The phonics patterns addressed within the materials systematically address second-grade-level TEKS. The year starts out with students focusing on the phonics patterns of short vowel sounds and two-letter blends such as r-blends, s-blends, t-blends, and l-blends. Students also begin focusing on long vowel sounds with the e at the end of the word. As the year progresses, students continue to focus on long vowel sounds with irregular vowel patterns such as ai, ay, ew, ei, igh, ie, oa, ow, and oe. Towards the end of the year, students focus on diphthongs such as ou, ow, oy, and oi. Students also focus on variant vowels such as oo, u, u_e, ew, ue, and ui. Students wrap up the year focusing on short vowel digraphs, closed and open syllables, final stable syllables, vowel team syllables, and words with CVCe syllables. Second-grade materials include a structural analysis component that includes instruction in open and closed syllables, inflectional endings, prefixes, and other skills.
Students learn about and practice phonics patterns during daily “Word Work” routines. In these lessons, students focus on skills in guided practice with the teacher, independently in the practice book, and in decodable and leveled readers. Grade 2 students are encouraged to apply their knowledge of spelling rules and patterns to their own writing. Spelling activities throughout the week focus on word sorts based on spelling patterns. Materials provide spiraled reviews, opportunities to proofread spelling words, and opportunities to explore word meanings for students. Materials include all patterns and types outlined in the TEKS.
In Unit 2, students read the decodable reader Duke and Bud’s Run. Before reading, students review the week’s high-frequency words and the letter U and its short u sound, spelled u_e. The text is read with students pointing to each word, sounding out decodable words, and saying high-frequency words quickly. After reading, students answer comprehension questions, retell the story with a partner, and read the story aloud to practice fluency.
High-frequency words are taught with a “Read/Spell/Write” routine. In Unit 5, the teacher displays the ten new high-frequency words for the week: answer, been, body, build, head, heard, minutes, myself, pretty, pushed. The teacher points to each word card, reads the word with the class, and has the students repeat the word in a sentence the teacher provides. The teacher then points out the spelling of the word, and students spell the word in the air as they say each letter. They also point out any irregularities in sound-spellings: for example, the /i/ sound in been is spelled ee. Once all of the new words have been introduced using the same routine, partners write sentences using each word. Lastly, the teacher posts ten sentences and has the class identify the high-frequency word in each one. A decodable reader for the week contains all the high-frequency words so students can read them in context.
In Unit 6, students read the decodable reader Clever Doggy to practice applying their decoding skills and the week’s high-frequency words. Before reading, the teacher reviews the high- frequency words and open and closed syllables. Students read the title and make predictions about the text. The whole group reads the text and answers comprehension questions. In partners, students retell the story. With a partner, the text is read again for fluency, focusing on accuracy. Also in Unit 6, students begin by reading and identifying high-frequency words such as door, front, order, probably, remember, someone, tomorrow, what’s, worry, and yesterday. The students go through the Read/Spell/Write routine with each of the words. Then, students work in pairs to use the words in conversation and finally write a sentence for each word, ensuring that the word is used correctly in context.