Hameray Classroom Literacy Blog!

A Digraph Scavenger Hunt with Fables and the Real World

Posted by Sally Hosokawa on Aug 30, 2016 3:30:00 PM

The Fables and the Real World series pairs narrative and informational texts together to help students make connections between fiction and reality. This series isn’t just created for teaching valuable life lessons, however. It also serves as a valuable resource for developing foundational literacy skills.

By Grade 1, the Common Core State Standards require that students “know the spelling-sound correspondences for common consonant digraphs” (CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.1.3.A) Digraphs, where a combination of two letters represents one sound, occur frequently throughout the English language. However, early readers can easily mix up the sounds of similar digraphs. The downloadable Fables and the Real World Teacher’s Guide lists different digraphs to focus on in each book, perfect to use for a digraph scavenger hunt with your students! The Teacher’s Guide also offers various exercises to teach digraphs:



 Nets for Work and Play (from the Dove King set)

  1. Have children identify words in this book with consonant digraphs: there, catch(ing), things, sh, ships, trucks, with, something, they, beaches, sharks, other, throw, through, stick, kick.
  2. Write the words on the board and ask children to take turns circling the letters that make the consonant digraphs.


Marvelous Milk (from the Milkmaid and her Pail set)

  1. Have children identify words in the book with consonant digraphs: where, what, there, things, with, cheese, pudding, milkshakes, whipped, chocolate, chip, healthy.
  2. Together, brainstorm words with consonant digraphs. Then have children use the words to make up rhymes.

Sun and Wind Energy (from the North Wind and the Sun set)

  1. Have children identify words with consonant digraphs wh, th, sh, ph, tch, ck, ng. Ask them to write the words and circle the digraphs.
  2. Create a chart with digraphs (including ch) as heads. Have children brainstorm words they know with these digraphs.

Turtle or Tortoise? (from the Tortoise and the Rabbit set)

  1. Have children find words in the book that use consonant digraphs wh, ch, th, sh. Ask where they can be found in words.

Animals are Clever (from The Fox and the Goat set)

  1. Help children identify words in this book with consonant digraphs th, sh, wh, ch, ck, tch, ng, ph.



seeds-cover.jpgSeeds (from the Dove King set)

  1. Have children find words in the book with final silent e as well as long vowel digraphs: seed(s), inside, waiting, three, goes, rain, sunshine, tree, eat.
  2. Have children sort the words by their vowel sounds, and then sort them by their vowel combinations.

The Tortoise and the Rabbit

  1. Have children find words in the book with final silent e as well as long vowel digraphs: time, race, see, each, ate, tie, shoes, came, eat(ing), take, woke, line.
  2. As children read other books today, have them look for words with final silent e and words with long vowel sounds made by using common vowel combinations.

The Donkey and His Driver

  1. Help children identify words in this book with vowel digraphs: donkey, mountain, road, looked, below, see, straight, slow, stay, head, tail, hay, instead.
  1. Help children identify words in other books that use the vowel digraphs contained in this book.


Going on a scavenger hunt through the Fables and the Real World series is a great way to learn how to distinguish both vowel and consonant digraphs. You can download the complete Teacher’s Guide for free at the bottom of this post.

What are other clever ways that you use the Fables and the Real World series to teach literacy skills to your students? Let us know in the comments below!


Click here to download a Fables and the Real World Teacher's Guide for FREE! Click the image below to download an information sheet about the Fables and the Real World series. 

Fables and the Real World More Information


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Topics: Leveled Readers, Digraphs, Grade One, Fables and the Real World

Using Mrs. Wishy-Washy to Teach Digraphs—with FREE Download!

Posted by Laureen on Feb 19, 2014 8:00:00 AM

This is a guest post by blogger Laureen. If you like what you see here, you can check out her blog, Teach with Laughter, for more of her writing.

Hello Everyone! It’s Laureen visiting again from Teach With Laughter to share with you one of the word work activities that I use in my classroom. Just saying the name Mrs. Wishy-Washy makes me think of the digraph ‘sh’. I would begin by reading a Mrs. Wishy-Washy book and having students point out all the ‘sh’ words. If your students are anything like mine you probably have a few who mix up the sounds of ‘sh’ and ‘ch’ so I created this sorting center.

Here’s a little peek:

digraph preview 287 digraph sorting pic 287

To use this activity, you will need to download the two clothesline sorting mats and the twelve t-shirts cards at the bottom of the page, and print them in your choice of color or black & white. On each t-shirt is a picture which begins with either the ‘sh’ or ‘ch’ sound. Students will sort the twelve cards onto the mats then there is a recording sheet to check for understanding.

digraph recording page 287

In my literacy stations I always include a student instruction card to help keep them on task and to decrease the number of times they interrupt me to ask what to do.

digraph I can card 287

This activity could be used with any Wishy-Washy book, but the inspiration for the clothesline came from the cover of Mrs. Wishy-Washy and the Big Wash.

mwwwash 287

If you use this in your classroom or have other ideas of how you would use Mrs. Wishy-Washy to teach digraphs please leave a comment on this post.


Laureen is a grade one teacher in Canada. She has been teaching kindergarten and grade one for 22 years, has two children, and enjoys creating hands-on learning activities for her classroom.  You can read about more of her activities at her blog Teach With Laughter.


To learn more about the Joy Cowley Collection, click here to visit our website, or click the series highlights image below to download an information sheet with key features. To get today's free activity download (12 pages), click the digraph unit image below!

New Call-to-Action Wishy-Washy Digraph Unit Download

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Topics: Mrs. Wishy-Washy, Joy Cowley, Phonics, Digraphs, Laureen

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