Teach impactful phonics intervention to upper elementary

In a perfect world, students would learn phonics and how to read in the primary grades, and upper elementary teachers could focus on the deeper elements of reading comprehension. Well, we all know this isn’t a perfect world, and kids continue to struggle with reading. Finding resources to help teach impactful phonics intervention for upper elementary kids can be tricky. Many resources are geared towards younger grades, and kids lose interest.

There have been so many times over the years I have been reading with a student, and I can immediately notice what skill or skills they are lacking. When children are first taught phonics, they start with basic words and spellings. As words get more complex, those skills are not always reviewed with students. Sometimes, just making those connections with kids is all they need.

For example, when students first learn the phonics rule with ai, they learn a basic word like ‘wait.’ Showing upper elementary students that rule again with the word ‘disclaim’ can be helpful to a student.

When there are gaps in a reader’s basic phonics skills, it can be hard to dig deeper into reading comprehension for skills like making inferences, using context clues, finding the theme, etc.

Over the years, I have used a collection of phonics skills and turned them into a Phonics Bundle that is completely geared toward third-, fourth-, and fifth-grade kids. No more babyish practice to help them excel. Keep reading and I will show you how to teach phonics intervention successfully to upper elementary kids.

Introduce, practice, and apply.

How to teach impactful phonics intervention successfully to upper elementary kids

With any skill I teach in the classroom, I try this strategy.

1. Introduce

2. Practice

3. Apply

In each of the phonics lessons, there is a poster to introduce the skill. Included in the Phonics Bundle are directions to print the posters in an “8.5 x 11” size and 17” x 22”

The standard-size poster is perfect for putting a sheet protector inside a small group binder. Go over the skill when you meet in a small group or review the skill in a whole group.

The picture below above that the 17” x 22” poster is perfect for displaying in the classroom while working on this skill.

Once you have moved on to another skill, you can keep the posters on a retractable clothesline or with a big adhesive hook like in the links.  Encourage students to refer to the posters throughout the school year when needed.

Ways to Teach Impactful Phonics Intervention

In a teacher’s busy day, you may feel it would be hard to find the time to go over each of the lessons. However, it is important to remember that these phonics building blocks are essential to grow as a reader. My favorite ways to squeeze these lessons into my day are:

  • Small groups
  • Morning work/early finishers
  • Centers
  • Tutoring

Ways to teach impactful phonics intervention

These practice pages are perfect to use. They are designed to be cut in half. Give one to the students and see which kids didn’t seem to grasp the skill and which kids seemed to understand the skill well.

Small group- Create small groups using the review pages. If a student does not seem to grasp the skill, pulling the kid(s) to a small group table or section of the room is easy. Review the skills poster and provide them with the second half of the practice sheet. There is also additional practice inside the phonics bundle.

Morning work/early finishers- The phonics bundle includes coloring pages and word searches. Each practice page focuses on the skill you are teaching at that time. Students are expected to either color the picture using the rule or find words that apply to that phonics rule.

Centers– Put the practice pages inside centers; you can also create small groups as the practice pages are turned in, too.

Tutoring Use the phonics bundle throughout a tutoring session or multiple tutoring sessions. With posters, practice pages, worksheets, coloring pages, and word searches, there are numerous ways to teach, reteach, or review these phonics skills.


Other resources for teaching phonics

I have also created a Phonics workbook to help upper elementary students practice phonics in a fun way. When creating this workbook, I had classrooms in mind and parents who are homeschooling or looking for extra resources to help their children. This workbook follows the same phonics rules found in the phonics bundle and gives extra reinforcement to students.

3rd and 4th grade phonics workbook


Take a closer look at the phonics bundle below.

I hope that you find some great ways to teach impactful phonics intervention successfully to upper elementary kids. While it doesn’t happen overnight, practice over time can equal big results.

Click here to check out more ➤ PHONICS PRACTICE.

You can also find me on TPT ➔ Marcy’sMayhem

& on ETSY ➔  Marcy’s Mayhem

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