About Ms. Gorham

Teaching :)

(Photo: Teaching at Glen Elm Elementary School).


Kourtney Gorham

I am a Student Support Teacher in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. I received my Bachelor of Education degree and Certificate of Extended Studies in Inclusive Education from the University of Regina. My long term goal is to become an Educational Psychologist and I start my Masters of Educational Psychology Program at the University of Regina this fall. I have been involved with a wide range of experiences related to teaching: coaching basketball, volunteering with Campus for All, sitting on the Special Olympics Moose Jaw Community Executive, Special Olympics coaching, working at Camp Easter Seal, and much more! These endeavors have been valuable tools for learning about those with varying abilities, differentiating instruction, and supporting inclusive environments. My professional interests include working with students of all abilities, teaching early literacy, and coaching basketball. My hobbies include playing recreational basketball, taking spin classes, and reading.

I would like to thank everyone who has been part of my lifelong journey to becoming and being an educator. “A teacher affects eternity; she can never tell where her influence stops” – Henry Adams. I am thankful for those in my life, especially my family, who support and believe in me to fulfill the important role we call teaching!

Please feel free to leave comments; I look forward to connecting with you!

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Recent Posts

Letter Review

In September I benchmark my Grade 1 students on their letter names and sounds (see my: Grade 1 Phonics Assessments). Then students who need additional review are placed in my room, as well as continue to review the letters in their classrooms. A typical intervention alphabet lesson includes:

  • review any letters that we have previously studied (name, sound, and action) with the large Letterland flashcards
  • introduce the new letters (name, sound, and action) with the large Letterland flashcards
  • practice forming our sounds with each student watching my mouth, discussing what my mouth/tongue looks like, and then practicing in their own mirrors to replicate the sound/mouth movements (I listen and correct sounds/formations as needed)
  • read the Letterland story for the current letters
  • brainstorm our own words that start with the letter sound
  • listen to the Letterland song for the letter while students repeat the sound and action (movement break)
  • sort 8 items/toys by initial sound for the letters (also focusing on turn taking)
  • find the names of our classmates that start with those letters and adding them to our word wall (we sometimes discuss sight words, too)
  • practice letter formation, after listening to “Start Your Letters at The Top” (Handwriting Without Tears), on our whiteboard tables
  • We also use activities from the Florida Center for Reading Research K-2 Phonics Curriculum and various letter songs on YouTube.

As a review of multiple letters or the entire alphabet we bowl or fish for letters (while the other students practice their writing), and play alphabet Jenga, Twister, dominoes, memory, Bingo, etc. One of our favorite reviews is the alphabet scavenger hunt!

I hide lowercase and uppercase foam letters of all sizes around my classroom. Students are put into teams or they can work as a group. When I hold up letter flashcards, everyone must state the name and sound and show me the letter action. I pick two students (from opposite teams) and they must search for the letter around the room while the rest of the students cheer them on. Students can receive two points – one for finding the letter and another for stating the name/sound when they bring it to me. I keep track of their points on the board and then we practice counting by 5s afterwards. The activity only takes about 30 minutes and allows me to take some anecdotal notes on each student’s letter proficiency. The best part is the student engagement!

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