This activity provides practice in recognizing and using blend sounds. The materials you need are an envelope for each student, index cards, and News for You.
On each card, print a word that contains a blend that has already been taught (ex. glad or stand). Cut each card in two between the blend and the remainder of the word. Place cards for about 8 to 10 words in each envelope. Pass out the envelopes to the students.
The students then assemble the blends and word parts to make words. Check each student's work. Then have students exchange envelopes so each student eventually assembles the words in each envelope.
After students have studied vowels or consonant blends, have a timed contest. Choose an article or articles in News for You and ask students to circle every word they can find that contains the sound or sounds you specify.
For example, you might say, "Circle all the words that have the long e sound. You have five minutes. Go!" When time is up, have students write their words on the board. Practice pronouncing and defining them and make sure they all have the right sound.
The same approach works for identifying parts of speech, verb forms, etc.