I have never been a fan of pranks or surprises, so April Fools’ was never a favorite holiday of mine. However, I am all for just being silly and having fun. With a fun April Fools’ worksheet, you can have fun and practice important reading skills at the same time.
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Learning is so much more effective when it’s fun!
With these worksheets, your kids can practice essential skills while also having a little bit of April Fools’ fun!
Reading nonsense words isn’t just a joke.
Our brains are constantly cataloging everything we encounter so that the next time around it doesn’t have to work so hard to figure out what it is. That is why most people are able to read the following passage without difficulty:
“It deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.”
When we read words we have never encountered before, we are forced to think a little harder.
These worksheets are designed to isolate one specific skill. There is no frame of reference for the nonsense words, so the reader must actually focus on that one skill rather than drawing from what they already know.
There are four April Fools’ worksheets, each at a different skill level.
- CVC Decoding — Simple consonant-vowel-consonant word practice. All the words are nonsense, so they can’t read on sight, they are forced to actually look at each sound and practice blending them together. Be sure to read in columns, not in rows, so you have the “April Fools’!” reveal at the end. The “a” in “aprl” (April) has a line above it to indicate it is a long “a” sound (as in ape) rather than a short “a” sound (as in cat). Your reader may be familiar with this if you use the Distar reading system found in my absolute favorite reading book “Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons.” Otherwise, you may have to help them out a bit.
- CVCE, Blend, and Digraph Decoding — Slightly more advanced decoding of words with consonant-vowel-consonant-e patterns, blended consonants (like “sp” or “bl”) and digraphs (like “th” and “ph”).
- Comprehension — Students will read a passage from Lewis Caroll’s “Jabberwocky” and answer a few questions. They can’t guess at the answers based on previous knowledge, because many of the words are complete nonsense. Instead, they have to use context clues and knowledge of sentence structure to figure out what the words mean. Answer key included.
- Parts of Speech — Similar to the comprehension, but at a more advanced level. Referencing the entire poem, “Jabberwocky.” readers will use context clues to determine the parts of speech of twenty nonsense words. Answer key included.
I had a lot of fun creating these silly worksheets,
I hope you and your readers have as much fun using them!