Here’s how they work:
I tell one of my students that I’m going to write him some secret messages. My students love the whole secret message thing. It’s thrilling, mysterious, and super top secret. I’ll take a strip of paper and make a huge deal about hiding what I’m writing. I’ll write a simple phonetic verb like hop, skip, run, lift, etc. and then fold the message in half and slide it across the table.
The child reads the message and then I suggest that he do what the message says. I’ll write a few more and then show the child a small stack of prepared action cards that he can do by himself or with a friend. Then I’ll leave him to his work.
The action cards are awesome because we are showing the child two very basic functions of language; that writing can be used to communicate a command and that there are some words that are action words. Obviously we don’t tell the child this, we’re just planting seeds at this point.
I’ve been making some new material for my class the last few days and I thought I’d share my set of action cards with you. You can download a PDF here. All you need to do is print it out, slice it up, and get going!
Download Action Cards Here: action-cards