EL Support Lesson

Vowels and Consonants

In this fun EL pre-lesson, students will practise learning about and identifying the differences between vowels and consonants using pictures and a catchy song!
This lesson can be used as a pre-lesson for theVowel or Consonant?Lesson plan.
GradeSubjectView aligned standards
This lesson can be used as a pre-lesson for theVowel or Consonant?Lesson plan.

Students will be able to differentiate between vowels and consonants.


Students will be able to identify differences between vowels and consonants using visual and written supports.

(3 minutes)
Teach Background Knowledge TemplateWrite Student-Facing Language Objectives ReferenceMy Animal Alphabet ChartVocabulary Cards: Vowels and ConsonantsGlossary: Vowels and Consonants
  • Ask the class to join you as you sing the ABC song, if students are not familiar with the song, sing it aloud while pointing to the classroom alphabet chart.
  • Access prior knowledge by having students turn and talk to a peer to answer the question, "What is a letter?"
  • Provide students with the sentence starter to support their pair share discussion, "I think a letter is ___"
(5 minutes)
  • Display the Tier 1 and 2 vocabulary words with student-friendly definitions and visuals.
  • Have students share out their ideas and define a letter as one of 26 letters, and a part of the alphabet.
  • Explain to students that today they will learn about some special letters in the alphabet. Some letters are called vowels and some are called consonants. Write up the five vowels on chart paper and tell students that these are called vowels, and that vowels are special letters in the alphabet because they make two sounds, a long sound and a short sound.
  • Play the Vowel Song for the students.
  • Have students practise saying the short and long vowel sounds chorally.
(5 minutes)
  • Explain that you know a letter is a vowel because the letters make two sounds, a short sound and a long sound. The long sound is the same as the name of the letter.
  • Tell the class that first you will be focusing on the short vowel sounds.
  • Display the image of the apple and ask students to name the image.
  • Explain that the word apple uses the short vowel sound A.
  • Repeat with the remaining images and have students repeat the short vowel sound for each letter.
  • Point to each of the five vowels written on the board and have students say the short sound aloud.
  • Write up a few consonants on the board (B, C, D, F) and have students identify them as consonants.
  • Go over the long vowel sounds by having students repeat after you the long vowel sounds.
(5 minutes)
  • Display the worksheet My Animal Alphabet Chart and demonstrate how you will be choosing a letter and having the students decide if the letter is a vowel or a consonant by giving a thumbs up for vowel and thumbs down for consonant.
  • Go over the alphabet chart by pointing to one letter at a time and having students decide if the letter is a vowel or consonant (use the vowels written on the board for reference as needed).
  • Explain that students will now get to practise identifying the differences between vowels and consonants on their own by coloring the vowels on the alphabet chart green and the consonants red.


  • Have students practise sorting vowels and consonants using index cards.


  • Have students identify vowels and consonants in CVC words by coloring the letters red/green.
(15 minutes)
  • Pass out a copy of the My Animal Alphabet Chart worksheet and one index card to each student.
  • Have students choose one vowel and one consonant to write on each side of their index cards words for their exit ticket. They can draw a picture (to go with the first sound of their letters) or write one of the letters on each side of the index card.
(2 minutes)
  • Ask students to share their exit ticket with their vowels and consonants with the class.

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