Being a parent, you always want to help your child succeed in life. Reading is a valuable life skill that helps the child to learn and grow better. Teachers spend years giving competent knowledge to children on phonics words. But many teachers are still stuck at singing ABC. If you are going through any of that, this article is for you.
The article includes a set of ideas for teaching children through phonics. Learn how to develop your children’s understanding of phonics.
Starting from getting the right friends to building confidence and teaching numbers, phonics includes everything relating to reading and writing. Children must be taught systematically about the pronunciation of words and sounds from the earliest days of life.
What is Phonics, and Why is it Important?
Phonics is simply teaching the children about the sounds of letters and developing their reading and writing ability. The teachers teach the sounds of the letter before they teach the name of the letter.
For example, teaching Phe before teaching them the letter “P” and sound Ta before teaching them the letter T.
The order of teaching them about phonics depends on the order of frequency of words in the English language. Like the sounds Pe, Le and Ke are taught before the sound Zz, Xa and Ul.
English is segregated into 44 sounds and 26 alphabets. Children can break the words through sounds rather than memorising the entire dictionary for good. Many types of research have shown that phonics sounds for kids are the most effective way to teach them a language.
When a child starts to understand the sound, they can make out the word. Many schools like the Real School have started teaching through this method for the students to learn a language faster. Unlike the learning of word or shape and size, phonics help the child to learn almost any word. It represents a skill that stays with the child for life.
Teaching Phonics to the Children
So, now you know Phonics is about putting sound on paper, but how to teach phonics for kids?
It is taught differently in different schools. The most widely used methods include Analytics Phonics and Synthetic Phonics.
In Analytic Phonics, the sound is not taught initially, but a whole word is given. The emphasis is on the first word; the rest is treated as the sound for the word. Once they understand how specific words are pronounced, they can now make out similar words that have associations with these words. These are specially mentioned in the phonics songs for kids like Rhymes and Poems.
Example: Rat, a word with Ra with ae and tt sound. Like Cat, Pat, Mat, Tat, Bat and Sat, similar words will become easier for the kids.
On the other hand, we have Synthetic Phonics. In this, children are given a whole word, and they have to break the word into parts through each alphabet’s sound and make the word.
For example, the word FATE. The kid has to pronounce every alphabet and needs to learn through pronouncing all the letters, F-A-T-E. Then they can match it with similar words like Late, Gate, Mate, etc.
Synthetic Phonics are comparatively better as they give more skills for the learners to decode the word and learn more than one language.
As mentioned at the start of the article, there are 26 alphabets and 44 sounds in the English language. This is why English is so complicated. The phonics are the sounds formed mixing multiple letters, like ai, ph, th, etc.
Points to Learn Before Teaching Phonics to Kids
Learn About the Difference in Letters –
Parents should learn to teach the difference between letters, the upper case, lower care, diphthongs and digraphs. Diphthongs and digraphs are those sounds that are formed by mixing two alphabets. This is the most important thing as the kid will learn the language better when he/she understands the sound.
With understanding about sound and speaking, the kids should be taught writing. Start with the uppercase first, as it is easier to learn and clean in writing. Then progress to the lowercase, and then you can try varieties of writing. Every letter has a specific stroke order (in which direction the pencil should move). Other than these, also teach them to hold the pencil well.
Start Blending –
When a kid is ready with pronunciations and letter usage, it is time to blend these results to form words. When the kid sees the word on paper, they read the individual alphabet’s sound out loud. It will take time, and the kids may not be very comfortable at first. Give them enough opportunities to practice over time and grasp the topic.
It is the opposite of Blending, where the student has to hear the word. Now, as per their hearing, they have to segment it based on individual sounds. It is a skill that will take time to develop, so it is ok if the kid takes his/her time. When they hear a word, the child should segregate the word into the beginning, middle, and ending.
Sight Words –
These words cannot be blended together and are used with high frequency. Kids should look at these words and know how to use these words in a sentence.
Steps to Teach Phonics to Kids
Step 1- Decoding the Word –
Children should be taught by letter sound in reception. This means, they should be taught about the sound of the alphabets out loud. This means that the children should be able to see the letter and know how they sound. It is called decoding.
Step 2- Blending the Word –
Now the children can speak the alphabets and their sound, it is time for them to blend the sounds of the whole word. It can be very helpful for children in reading and understanding the words.
Step 3- Decoding the CVC Words –
Teach the children to focus and decode three letter words arranged as consonants, vowels and consonants. They will learn sounds of consonants such as g,b,d and h which sounds different when they are followed by different vowels. Example, G followed by E makes the sound of J whereas G followed by U will make a sound of “Ga”.
Step 4- Vowels Digraph –
Kids then need to learn digraphs. These are two vowels that combine to make a sound such as OO, EE, AI, OA, etc. They will learn to speak words such as deer, hair, boat and loot.
Step 5- Decoding Consonant Cluster –
Consonant cluster means a combination of CCVC and CVCC words. Words used together as tr, cr, st, pl and st. These will make the kids learn words like a trap, stand, plate, etc.
These are the top five fundamental techniques to teach phonics sounds to kids. Many other proven methods can be included in teaching phonics to kids. But to start with, parents and teachers should focus on these methods more. If you are willing to read more informational blogs/articles on similar topics, visit us at the Real School website. We ensure good all-around exposure for your kids through creative methods of learning. Take our free demo class to learn more about our teaching methods.