Play-Acting the Sneaky
Silent Final 'E'
Kids love to act out little dramas
and stories. Here's a fun one to help them learn the effect of the silent "e"
at the end of many words.
The silent "e" makes the vowel say
its name. That means the long form of the vowel is what is pronounced.
So the word "rat" becomes "rate"
with a silent final "e."
The word "con" becomes "cone."
This works best with four children.
First, on typing paper, write one letter per page, large enough to be seen
across a room. Have an "o," an "a," several consonants, and, of course, an "e."
Make a simple bandit's mask out of
black paper and some elastic, or tape a band across the back so that it'll stay
on a child's head. Fashion a cape out of some kind of material.
Now arrange the kids so that the
first three of them are standing there, each with a letter that spells out a
three-letter word. Let's say one child is holding "t," the middle child holds
"a" and the third child holds "p." That's "tap." Have them pronounce it.
All of a sudden, here comes the
Sneaky Silent Final E child, in the bandit's gear, silently but spookily
sneaking up and sidling next to the child holding the "p," and silently
spooking the child holding the "a."
That child should say aloud the long
form of that vowel - and then the first three children should say what the new
word is: "tape."
Of course, the child holding the "e"
doesn't say anything, because that final "e" is . . . what? SILENT!
Do it over and over again with
different simple four-letter words, and let each child have a turn playing the
Sneaky Silent Final E.
By Susan Darst Williams • www.GoBigEd.com • Grammar Granny
021 • © 2006