a witch’s flat hat

A Witch’s Flat Hat

A Witch’s Flat Hat
Target text


Children will recognize and read words with the short-a sound.

Lesson Plan

Target Words:

  • fat
  • hat
  • dash
  • cat
  • black
  • flat


  • Black construction paper
  • Chalk
  • Pictures* or toy bat, cat, and rat 
  • A Witch’s Flat Hat target text*

*Items included below.

State and Model the Objective
Tell the children that they will read and write stories about a witch that will use short-a words, words such as fat, hat, bat, cat, black, splat, and dash.

Literacy Activities
Introduce the target words

  • Show the children words from the text.
  • Point out that all the words have the short-a sound.
  • Help the children read the words.
  • Optional: show the children how a bat can flap in this video.

Read A Witch’s Flat Hat 

  • Read A Witch’s Flat Hat text (see below) with children and fade support.
  • Have the children find words in the poem that have the short-a sound.
  • Show how the poem is in the shape of a hat and let the children draw a witch’s hat.
  • Have the children write short-a words to dictation on the hats they draw (e.g., at, flap, bat, hat, black, rat, bat, cat).

Make a witch’s hat

  • Have the children make witches’ hats out of black paper triangles stapled to headbands.  
  • Let the children use chalk to write hat on their hats.
  • Use the hats as props for the next activity.

Re-enact the story

  • Label the pictures of the bat, cat, and rat (see below) and assign them as roles for re-enacting the story.
  • Have the bat, cat, and rat run and jump on the hat.
  • Let a witch wave a pretend broom at the cat, rat, and bat; tell them to “scat;” and smack the hat flat.

Identify, blend, and manipulate sounds 

  • Have the children blend individual sounds into words by clapping once for each sound, and then a fourth time to say the whole word. 
    • /b/ /a/ /t/ = /bat/
    • /b/ /a/ /ck/ = /back/
    • /d/ /a/ /sh/ = /dash/
    • /h/ /a/ /t/ = /hat/
  • Point out that all of the words have the /a/ vowel sound.

Write about the activity using target words

  • Have the children take turns passing the flat hat.
  • As the children receive the hat, have them say a new word that ends in -at
  • Write each new word on the board.  
  • Repeat the game, this time having the children write each word on or around the paper hat.
  • Allow the children to write a sentence about a hat using the words written on the hat (e.g., “I see a cat on a hat”).
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