Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Tried it Tuesday: Blending Buddies!

Today was my first official day back!  My room is so SO close to being ready, but it's not quite ready yet for my classroom reveal!  Don't worry, it will be soon! :)

I wanted to share these little things I like to call the Brilliant Blending Buddies!!! :)  Last year, one of our PD days was with our assistant superintendent, who has the most amazing ideas ever!  The Brilliant Blending Buddies are for readers who are struggling with sounding out and blending the sounds together.

They're so super easy to make!  All you need are foam sheets {or felt} and pom poms.  I got my foam sheets at Hobby Lobby.  {I just cut them in half so the finished ones are about 2 inches X 6 inches.}  Hot glue some pom poms on and you're good to go!

The Brilliant Blending Buddies are super easy to use too!  Here's how they work!

Say a student is stuck on the word cat.  They grab a Brilliant Blending Buddy and sound out each letter as they touch a pom pom.  {I have ones with 3 and 4 pom poms.}

So they touch the first pom pom and say:

Then the second:

 And the last!

Then then go back to the beginning and slide their finger across the bottom and blend the sounds together.

It's so simple and easy and IT WORKS! 

Last year I used them in my reading groups and had them available for the kids to use if they wanted to when reading on their own.  A few even asked to take one home!  

I also have a set of Brilliant Blending Buddies with four pom poms.  I used these ones for words with beginning or ending blends.  The rule was, you have to wrap up the two beginning sounds {or the two ending sounds depending on the word}.  So if you were sounding out stop, you would sound out /s/ /t/, then circle your finger around the two pom poms and blend them.  Then you would sound out the o and p and blend the whole word.

I was amazed at how well these little things helped!!  Link up with Fourth Grade Flipper and share something you've tried!! :)


  1. What a brilliant idea! Thank you so much for sharing. If I ever go back to little kids, I will definitely be doing this!
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  2. What a wonderful strategy to use! I have a soon to be 1st grader at home (in a week she starts!) and I could see this helping her!! Thanks so much for linking up:)
    Fourth Grade Flipper

  3. Sarah- I am so glad I stopped over to leave a message- because for some reason I hadn't seen this post- and I LOVE this idea! It is fabulous! I am making some this weekend. Thank you so much for sharing! :)
    Kindergarten: Holding Hands and Sticking Together