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A Reading lesson using The Cat in the Hat and the Phonogram method


Language Arts  


PreK, K, 1, 2, 3  

Reading Lesson Plan, Cat in the Hat

Shelley Yamnitz

October 9, 1996

Strategy: Phonogram Method


Student will learn various phonograms and identify these phonograms through several words in context. Also, student will learn to read four more difficult words (mother, trick, thing, fish).


By learning various phonograms (such as -at and -ake), students will be able to combine them with different onset phonemes to become familiar with a variety of words. By keeping this learning in the context of reading a book, the student will realize the meaning associated with these phonograms and words. The value behind introducing four more difficult words is to simply increase their reading vocabulary and ability to decode words within context.


One copy of The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Suess (for two students)

Notecards with words of specific phonograms printed on them

Word strips on construction paper (mother, trick, thing, fish)


Divide the notecards evenly among the students. Read each word on the notecards along with the students to help them become familiar with the words. Read the book to the students, having them hold up and say a word on their notecard whenever it is read in the story. If a student misses one of their words when read, stop and ask, “Do you have any of the words in that sentence?” This will clue them to look for the word and help them to identify it. Continue to read the book until all students are familiar with reading their notecards.

After reading the story, give each child two word strips. Ask each student if they can read the words, and have them do so if they can. Give the page number for each word. Have the student identify the word on each page. Have the student read the page with assistance when needed. If they cannot read the word, help them to figure it out from context.


The challenge level of this lesson seemed to be just right for Ethan and Jeff. Because they are lower readers, the structure of using the phonogram method was appropriate for their ability. They were both able to read the phonogram cards and pick out the words as they were read. Also, they did much better than on previous lessons in deciphering the word strips from the context of the story. I feel that using the phonics-oriented strategy of the phonogram method along with a book helped to develop their decoding ability, while preserving the importance of reading literature on the whole.

Maintaining the interest of Ethan and Jeff during this lesson was slightly difficult. I don’t feel like they were bored because it was too easy, however. I think part of the problem was that they associate the use of notecards with more of a game setting, so they were geared up for that.

Changes could be made to improve this lesson plan. One of these changes would be to use more word strips from the context of the book. I didn’t expect Ethan and Jeff to do as well as they did on this, so I only picked a few words. Their success indicated that they probably could have benefited with more of this activity. Also, I might try sentence strips in addition to simply word strips. Using entire sentences could help to integrate words built from phonograms and other more complex words, which would further build on their comprehension and decoding skills.

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