My son's PreK alternative kindergarten teacher is really working with all the four- and five-year olds on listening to beginning and ending sounds. Combined with their Jolly Phonics practice, many of them are getting REALLY good and identifying what letters words start with.
Ending sounds are a little tougher for my son.
I worked up some fun practice cards. I said, "Let's work on reading."
He looked at me like I was crazy and reluctantly sat down at the table.
I handed him one of the picture cards I'd made. I asked, "What's in the picture?"
"A top," he replied.
"So what is the beginning sound?"
"Tah, tah, tah," he said. "That's a t!"
I pointed to the letters on the card. "What word DOESN'T start with t? Cross through it."
"Now what is the ending sound in top?"
"Pah, pah, pah," he replied. "It's p!"
"What word DOESN'T end in a p? Cross through it."
"Now circle the word that's left. That's the word top."
He was SO proud of himself. This exercise is great at helping kids really listen, put their phonics knowledge into practice, and start to see how sounds mix to make words.
Download the four pages of cards I made from Google Drive here. If you want to reuse them, either slip the pages inside plastic sheet protectors or laminate and use fine-tip dry-erase markers so the pages can be wiped clean afterwards.