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In the following lesson, students will learn what contractions are and some basic rules used in contractions, Students will understand that when doing contractions, you donít change the ďfirst wordĒ and will learn the you do change the ďsecond wordĒ.

Lesson: Contractions
Grade Level: 2nd Grade
Concept to be taught: What contractions are and some basic rules
Objectives: 1) Students will learn what contractions are
2) Students will understand that when "doing contractions," you don't change the "first word."
3) Students will learn that it's the "second word" that is changed.

Materials needed:
Chalkboard Overhead
A copy of the song, "The Contraction Song" (Wilson, 1988) on A large poster (or overhead) Paper and markers (Copies of the song on paper)

1) Begin by asking students what they know about contractions. Depending on studentís prior knowledge about contractions, the teacher will then know how much to "review" or "explain" about some contractions.
2) Explain why we use contractions. Tell the students that they are a "shorter form of 2 words" and they are especially helpful when speaking and are also helpful in writing.
3) "Explain the rules" of contractions by the words of the song: a) "I'm the first word; don't change Me." b) "When you change the second word, a shorter word you'll see.
c) "Certain letters are taken out.... one word will remain."
d) Explain what an "Apostrophe" is and let students know that it's the apostrophe which will "fill the space" (when a letter is taken out).
4) For those students who have never seen a contraction, provide some examples on the chalkboard to give all of them the confidence that they can write them.
5) Explain that you have a "neat song" which is FUN and explains the "rules of contractions."
6) Introduce the song, explaining that the tune is sung to a song that they already know ("Mary had a little lamb") and after singing the first verse once, invite the students to sing along!
7) Ask questions like, "Does the first word ever change?" No!
8) Then sing the rest of the song several times emphasizing to the students to listen for "the rules."

Now have the students write at least 6 contractions to be displayed in the classroom (if they "haven't" done so already).
The students will by now have easily ^earned the basics about contractions and have the confidence to write them by learning this simple song!
Note: After hanging their papers on contractions in the room for a week or two, take them down to show their families that they "understand all about contractions." Also, it is at this time that the teacher gives each student a copy of "The Contraction Song" to take home so that the students can "show-off" or teach the song to their families.
Rationale for including music:
Besides the obvious (teaching the rules of contractions), this song will help students easily remember how to do contractions,
Of all that learning can be fun!

B. Wilson (1988). Phonics Fun Grade 2 (p 118) Greenboro, North Carolina: Carson^Dellosa Publishing Company, Inc.

The Contraction Song (Tune: Mary had a little lamb)

1. Iím the first word, donít change me!
Donít change me, donít change me.
Iím the first word, donít change me!
Please just let me be

2. When you change the second word, Second word, second word, When you change the second word, A shorter word you'll see.
3. Certain letters are taken out, Taken out, taken out. Certain letters are taken out. One word will remain.
4. Apostrophe will fill that space, Fill that space, fill that space. Apostrophe will fill that space, The rest will stay the same.
5. Can't and couldn't, isn't, too. Isn't too, isn't, too, Won't and I've and let's, it's true, Contractions every one.
6. I'm and she's and you're and he'd, You're and he'd, you're and he'd, Wouldn't, didn't, we'll and she'd, Good! And now we're done!


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