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How to Teach the L Blends to Young Kids

Updated on March 22, 2020
Felisa Daskeo profile image

I am a certified teacher and have been tutoring young children for more than 30 years. I am sharing my experience in the tutorial business.

Flower begins with fl.

Flower begins with initial consonant blend fl.
Flower begins with initial consonant blend fl.

The l blends:

The lessons for the young kids are becoming more difficult but they are becoming easier for the young kids since they are already equipped with the basic reading skills.

We have already discussed all the CVC words and we even had the CVC story. Now we are in clusters or blends. When we put two consonant letters together, they make a blended sound which is pronounced as one, so we call them consonant blends, consonant clusters or digraphs. Some examples of consonant blends are fl, bl, br, gr, st, sp, tr, etc.

I always start with l blends. Words like flower and blouse have l blends. L blends are initial consonant blends since they are at the beginning of the word.

To make the lesson simpler for the little kids; I only teach the initial blends. Remember that the children have just learned their first words so we don't want them confused. We don't teach complicated words to very young kids. It is enough that they learn only the basic words then they will soon learn the other words as they move to the higher reading level. The key when teaching basic reading is to make the lesson very comprehensible to the young kids..

The L Blends:

How to teach the l blends:

First things first;

Introduce the new lesson to the kids.

Before you teach the blends, it is expected that you have already taught the children to read simple words like the CVC words: these are cat, dog, big, mud and so on. In addition the children also learned how to read basic sight words like is, are, in, on, with, the, and, etc.

So, if you introduce words with the l blends, it is not anymore very hard for them to read the words and provided that you are going to explain very well how the words are read. Let the children pronounce the blends then connect them to the other letters before reading the word.

For example:

The word bless will be dissected like this: bl + e = ble + ss = bless

Let the children pronounce the blend, add the vowel sound then add the last consonant. Explain how to do it just like when you taught the kids how to read the CVC words. Always explain to the children how you read a word using the sound out method and that will help them learn how to read words. If the method is properly instilled in the mind of the kids; they will learn to read every word they see using the sound out method. Of course they will learn to read the sight words too as they move on.

More Activities for the l blends:

Copy the words:

It is always advisable to let the children copy whatever lesson they are learning. The purpose of this is to let the children touch the words through the pen. According to a handwriting expert, when the children are taught how to form words, they automatically learn to recognize the words and learn to read them because they have learned to form words and taught how to touch them from pencil to paper. That is why copying is very important.

Write the initial blend

You can let the children do some paper work where they don’t need to read the words but instead say the name of the picture then write the initial blend they hear. Using their sense of hearing, the children will thus understand the meaning of consonant blends which will help them decipher words and be able to read them.

Here’s a simple method that will make reading blends easier for children. Let the children close their eyes. Let them say flower; since most of the children I’m sure cannot yet read the word globe, it is better if they listen and recognize the initial blend. Pronounce the initial blend of g + l. Make the sounds loud for the children to recognize. Now, ask them what sounds they heard and ask them what blend they heard.

Recognition of sounds can best be done with eyes closed because there are no other distractions and you are concentrated to the sound you hear.


Dictation is best done on a Friday when you have thoroughly taught the blends. I’m sure the children already know what the blends are and they can write dictation.

More activities for l blends.

  1. Encircle the correct word
  2. Match the picture to the blend
  3. Match the blend to the picture
  4. Choose and copy the correct word for the picture
  5. Color the picture that matches the consonant blend
  6. color all the pictures with consonant blends


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