Building a Strong Foundation: Teaching Digraphs to Kindergarten Students for Reading Success

After students have learned their letter sounds, they are ready to start using those sounds to read and write words!  However, they soon come across a big roadblock: Digraphs. 

Just when students think they know all the sounds letters make, they get to words that contain digraphs, and all of a sudden, it doesn't make sense anymore.  This is why I talk about those letter combinations as soon as they come up, and then in the second half of the year(in Kindergarten), we have whole lessons specifically on digraphs.

Digraphs are two letters that come together to make one sound, and they can be both exciting and challenging for young learners. I've put together some of my favorite engaging and effective activities to help you introduce and reinforce digraphs in your kindergarten classroom.

Whole Group Sorts

I love using pocket charts to sort picture cards by the digraph we hear. 
(Pocket charts make it so easy for everyone to see!)
You can do sorts like this together as a whole class, in small group instruction, or add it to a literacy center.
Beginning Digraphs Sort

Independent Practice

When it's time for some independent or even guided practice, we use these worksheets and picture sorts for the students to show what they know.
Beginning Digraphs

Digraph Puzzles

While students are in their literacy centers, they can use these digraph puzzles to make words.
Beginning Digraphs Puzzles


Another fun whole group, or small group, activity is this exciting, "Where's the Butterfly?" pocket chart game.  You will hide the butterfly behind one of the word cards. Students then take turns reading the words and then looking behind the card to see if the butterfly is hiding behind it! 

Anchor Charts

As we learn about digraphs, I make an anchor chart for each one. (We'll focus on one digraph a day.)  As a class, we discuss words that have that specific digraph in them, and we add those words to our chart.  As students find more words throughout the day, we'll continue adding to the charts. 

If you would like a set of these FREE digraph anchor charts for your own classroom, you can get them on Teachers Pay Teachers, here.

Digraph Anchor Charts Freebie

Most of these other activities can be found here, on TPT.

Beginning Digraphs