When I’m looking for something to do on Monday, I don’t want to see something that says, “Teach ‘to,’ ‘too,’ and ‘two’ by examining meaning and pronunciation, and find kinesthetic and auditory hooks to help learners remember the spelling.” I want details, details, details. So I’ve written lots of details today.
Here is a lesson I have taught many times, to help students understand and remember the spelling of “to,” “too,” and “two.”
These three are called homonyms in every book or app that I have seen, but in my part of the English-speaking world, they are not all pronounced the same way. “To” is usually shortened in speech to “t’ ” a “t” sound and a very little “uh” or schwa sound after it.
I like this lesson because it’s a new take on an old topic, because students collect and analyze the data and come up with the rules instead of me giving them out, because it involves a fair amount of moving around and fun, because it involves exploring the language, and finally because it offers the students some physical and auditory hooks to remember these three words, in addition to the usual meaning-based distinctions. Continue reading