Phonics and Reading
Helping your child with Phonics:
As your child reaches the end of the school year they need to know all the phonic sounds so that they can extend their reading skills for reading longer words. We follow the letters and sounds scheme for phonics.
They already know the sounds in the basic alphabetic code.
The next stage of phonics is more tricky as they will have to know the initial sounds and then learn the more advanced alphabetic code. This means that they have to know that combinations of two letters make one sound e.g ai but also sometimes different combinations of letters can be used for the same sound. This is because the English language is so complex. So for ai you have train, ay as in tray, a-e as in cake and ey as in they . The children have to know these sounds (phonemes) in order to work out more complex words.)
It is really important when your child looks at a word that they say the sounds correctly in the right order.
This takes time and lots of practice.
Your child will be expected to know the sounds so well that they will have to recognise them in “nonsense “ words . In order to help you, I am sending a list of the sounds home. Get your children to read and practise them quickly. The faster they are able to say them (correctly ) the better they will become. This can be made into a game like bingo.
It is really important that you tell your child to read the sounds in the right order from the beginning to the end of the word e.g. starlight will be blended as s-t-ar-l-igh-t. A word of Warning some children will add in a letter particularly in a “nonsense “word they are reading to try and make meaning from it. For example a nonsense word such as slipe they might try and read as slip. Please make sure they keep strictly to the letters and sounds they see.
Also I am sending home sets of words; real words and nonsense words so that your child can play a game. The sets of real words are listed under all the sounds and the alternative pronunciations and alternative graphemes that the children need to know. Another key way to ensure that your child really knows the sounds is in writing. Start with real and simple words and ensure your child is hearing every sound clearly and that they can write down the sounds (called graphemes) accurately.
In school we primarily use the Big Cat reading scheme, in addition this is supplemented by The Oxford Reading Scheme.
Useful websites especially if you have an i-pad or i phone are:
There are some additional resources that are particularly good for the higher levels of phonics learning.
Also Mr Thorne does phonics on i-tunes and also on youtube that you can access at home
If you have any questions I am only too happy to answer them.
( Please note that the lists of words given are crown copyright from the Letters and Sounds Document (2007)
To download the set of words please click here