ray and rain

Ray and Rain

Ray and Rain
Target text


Read and write words with two long a spellings: –ai and –ay; recognize both spellings as having the same pronunciation.

See Standards

Lesson Plan

Target Words:

  • ray
  • play
  • stay
  • rain
  • paint
  • pail


  • Ray and Rain graphics 
  • Flashlight
  • Spray bottle and tray
  • Word cards 
  • Long a (ai/ay) Word Sort Paper 
  • Rain and Rays of Sunshine target text 

State and Model the Objective
Tell the children that they will make a ray of sunshine and drops of rain and they will read and write words spelled with the long a vowel combinations –ai and –ay such as ray, hay, pain, rain.

Literacy Activities
Make a sun ray and rain drops

  • Show the children the Ray and Rain graphics and point out that both words have the long a sound, but they are spelled differently.
  • Mix up the word cards and have the children sort the cards, putting the words spelled with –ay by the Ray graphic and the words spelled with –ai by the Rain graphic.
  • Have the children read the word on each card as they place the word cards on the graphics.
  • Allow the children to pretend to make a ray of sunshine by shining a flashlight.
  • Have the children write words spelled with –ay in the air with the flashlight (e.g., ray, say, pay, day, may, hay, way, play).
  • Let the children pretend to make raindrops by spraying water onto a tray.
  • Tell the children to use their finger to write words spelled with –ai in the water on the tray (e.g., rain, main, pain, pail, sail, tail, raid, paid).

Make –ay and –ai words

  • Let the children use a whiteboard to write the word ray and then have them change the initial consonant one letter at a time to make new words: e.g., ray --> say --> pay --> hay --> day --> may --> way --> jay --> ray.
  • Allow the children to write the word rain on the whiteboard and then have them the initial or final consonant one letter at a time to make new words: e.g., rain --> raid --> rail --> pail --> paid --> pain --> main --> mail --> rail --> rain.
  • Give the children the Long a (ai/ay) Word Sort Paper and have them sort the words at the bottom of the page by writing them into the column corresponding with the long a spelling in the word.

More Practice
Read target words in a text

  • Read the target text Rain and Rays of Sunshine to the children.
  • Engage the children in reading the text simultaneously with you.
  • Read the Rain and Rays of Sunshine target text again fading support.
  • Have the children list the words from the text spelled with –ai and –ay.

Write about the activity using target words

  • Introduce a word wall displaying target words from the lesson (i.e., ray, play, stay, rain, paint, pail)
  • Have the children write a sentence or two expressing ideas from a lesson activity or target text using words from the word wall (e.g., I like to see a ray of sun after rain).
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SEEL Target Texts

Rain and Rays of Sunshine

I love the rain.
I play in the rain drops.
I stay and play in puddles of rain.
I catch the rain in pails.
I love to see rays of sunshine after rain.
I stay and play in the warm rays of sun.
I watch the plain gray clouds go away.
I look for rainbows and blue jays to come out.
I love rain and rays of sun!
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SEEL lessons align with Common Core Standards. Please see the standards page for the code(s) associated with this lesson.