Rainbow Cards (Download) are 9 sets of hands-on manipulatives (72 pages of blackline masters, games, tips, and information) that can be used alone as an introduction to phonics. They are also easily adapted to support other reading programs. Just print them on the paper color suggested, cut them apart, and you're ready for hours of enjoyment with your students while they receive excellent practice blending sounds.
Carol developed her Rainbow Cards many years ago to give the struggling readers in her classroom a fun hands-on experience with reading through games. The cards have worked so well to teach phonics (alphabetic principles) that she has used them with almost every student she has taught since then (ages 4 and up).
Rainbow Cards cover the following basic phonics patterns:
Set 1 – Introductory CVC Words (consonant-vowel-consonant)
Introductory set to teach words that contain only 1 vowel, and open and closed syllables
Set 2 – Additional CVC words
All the possible beginning consonant combinations (onsets) and ending consonant
blends that follow single vowels
Set 3 – “Magic-E” Words
All the rimes that follow the CV-e pattern (as in “home”), to be used with the green cards
(onsets) from Sets 1 and 2
Set 4 – Unusual Letter Combinations
Endings that do not say what they should, as in “all,” “ing,” “ink,” “old,” etc.
Set 5 – Regular Vowel Teams (Digraphs)
Double vowels that follow the rule, “When two vowels go walking, the first one does the
Set 6 – “R-Controlled” Vowels
Vowels that are followed by an “r” change their sounds (as in “farm” or “bird”)
Set 7 – Irregular Vowel Teams (Digraphs and Diphthongs)
Sometimes double vowels are predictable, but many times they are not. This set covers the letter combinations that don’t follow a pattern (as in “eight”).
Set 8 – Suffixes and Suffix Rules
This set gives practice in using the three rules that affect spellings when adding a suffix.
Set 9 – The Six Basic Syllable Types
Almost all syllables in every word of English fall into one of six patterns. If they are purposefully taught, even young children are able to decode longer multisyllabic words.