My First Year with SIPPS

Kathleen is an intervention teacher in Pinellas County, Florida. She and her colleagues have been strategically providing interventions to third-, fourth-, and fifth-graders. Data analysis revealed some students required explicit instruction and practice with phonics and word study instruction. They grappled with ways to provide this support. Their questions and wonderings led them to explore the SIPPS program. This is their first year using SIPPS in tandem with another intervention resource. For Kathleen and her colleagues, this has been a year of questioning, reflecting, collaborating, and learning as they continue to search for ways to best meet the needs of every student along the path to reading success. Below Kathleen shares some of her insights from this school year.

My first year teaching SIPPS:

  • I see growth in my students. Some students are moving at a slower rate than others, but all students have shown growth.
  • I love how systematic SIPPS is regarding teaching the principles of reading. My students are better able to hear all the sounds in words. They are much more proficient in their ability to hear and analyze vowel sounds.
  • I believe they have more confidence in their ability to write words and decode multisyllabic words.
  • Some of SIPPS’s specific strategies are downright brilliant: the visuals for short vowels, how it teaches silent e, how it teaches long vowel patterns.
  • I love how SIPPS guides students to ask a question when writing a word with a long vowel sound. Students are able to recognize that they are hearing the long vowel sound; they are recognizing that there is more than one way to write it; and they are confidently writing the word when they know which pattern in falls under. They are questioning, analyzing sounds, and mastering spelling patterns.

Overall, I feel like I have become a better reading teacher! I have implemented the SIPPS strategies into my other intervention groups and have seen growth in them as well. What is telling is the gaps in decoding knowledge in the groups that have not had the opportunity to be in the SIPPS program. Many fourth- and fifth-graders don’t have the strong foundation in phonological awareness or phonics.

I plan on implementing SIPPS more fully next year from the beginning of the year. Love it!

We applaud Kathleen for sharing her reflections as she and her colleagues work to make every child a reader!

Click here to read more SIPPS blogs. If you would like to download a sample of SIPPS to try in your classroom, please visit our samples page.