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Teaching Phonics To Your Child

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What is Phonics?

Yourdictionary.com defines Phonics as the study of sound. It is a technique by which children are taught to read. One way in which phonics is taught is to combine groups of letters with the sound that they make when they are spoken.

4 reasons Why phonics is important when a child is learning to read

1. Children must use phonics in order to master words. This is because mastery of words is the first key step toward successful reading.

2. Phonics teaches children the the sounds represented by the letters.

3. Phonics also teaches the child how to make the sounds when letters are combined into words.

4. Phonics helps children to become independent readers. This is because they are able to create “word sounds” when letters are combined.

Children absolutely must master the ability to recognize letters and to form the sounds that they are to produce. This is essential in reading.

What is phonemic awareness and why is it important in child reading?

Phonemic awareness is the ability to hear, identify, and manipulate phonemes.

A phoneme is any of the perceptually distinct units of sound in a specified language. Each of these distinct unit of sound distinguishes one word from another. For example, the letters p, b, d, and t in the alphabet has a different sound.

When p, b, d and t appear in words, the word will be distinct based on the phoneme. For example, the English words pad, pat, bad, and bat sound different because of the phoneme or sound of the letter.

In other words, phonemic awareness means that they child is taught how the sounds in words work before they learn to read print. .

What is a grapheme and why is it important in child reading?

A grapheme is a letter or a number of letters that represent a sound (phoneme) in a word. Alternatively, we can say that a grapheme is a letter or letters that spell a sound in a word.

By learning phonics and phonemic awareness, children gain the ability to pronounce new words, develop clear articulation, improve spelling, and develop self confidence.

The following video explains the meaning of phonemic awareness. Note, however, that our recommended child reading program teaches letter recognition in collaboration with the sound of the letter. This is highly effective and accelerates reading.

At what age should you teach phonics?

Most research based advice recommend starting the child between three and four years of age. However, our recommended program shows that a child can learn to read starting as early as 18 months of age.

What are 3 guidelines to follow when teaching your child to read?

1) Read for your child. This can be a word, sentence or story. However, you must appeal to your child’s interests.

2) Never pressure or force your child into reading. This will cause reading to become a negative “event” in their life. Reading should be a fun, enjoyable, and rewarding experience. Making reading enjoyable calls on the parent’s patience and creativity.

3) Begin by teaching your child to mastery the phonemes. The phonemes are the individual sounds which makeup the words.

your child can read at 2 years on babymilestones.info

What are 3 practical steps when teaching your child to read?

These 3 practical steps to reading lay out a logical and easy progression for parents to follow when teaching their children to read. This is because the sequence goes from simple to more complex activities.

The steps help the child to develop accuracy in recognizing and pronouncing words. This method of teaching also helps the child to spell correctly.

These are the three steps to follow:

1. The reading process begins by teaching the letters and related letter sounds

2. Second you must teach the child to combine (or blend) various letter sounds together to form words.

3. Read sentences and simple stories to your child.

How long should a phonics lesson last?

A phonics lesson should last no more than 10 to 15 minutes each day. These “lessons” should take place in several small sessions each day.

Parents should conduct 4 or 5 reading sessions each lasting 3 to 5 minutes each. Lessons can be slightly longer for older pre-school children.

ABC phonics song – sound of the letters

Examples of how parents can go about a phonics teaching session with their children

These are additional guidelines for conducting an actual phonics teaching session with your child:

1. Sound out letters and words slowly and distinctly. This can be done without even making the child aware that you are trying to teach them. Simply take words from your everyday speaking to your child and include oral blending sounds into your sentences.

For example, if you wanted to ask your child to drink his milk, you could say: “Joe, d-r-i-n-k your m-ilk.” The words drink and milk are sounded out slowly and distinctly. The level of sound separation can be set by you to increase or lower the difficulty. Thus, if Joe has a tough time figuring out that d-r-i-n-k means drink, you can lower the difficulty by blending the word as dr-ink instead.

2. Play ear training games with the child

Alternatively, you could simply pick different words and play blending sounds games with your child. You simply say the sounds out the word slowly, and ask the child try to guess what you are saying.

This concept of individual sounds forming words may take some time for your child to grasp. Some children will pick it up quickly, while other children may take longer, but one thing that’s certain is that if you keep it up, your child will catch on. Below are some sample words which you can use to play blending sounds activities with your child.

J-u-m-p J-ump
R-u-n R-un
S-i-t S-it
S-t-a-n-d St-and
M-i-l-k M-ilk
S-t-o-p St-op

The first word is more segmented than the second word, and will be more difficult to sound out. Please note that hyphens are used to indicate the letter sounds instead of slashes.

ie: J-u-m-p /J/ /u/ /m/ /p/

This is done to make things easier to read; however, when you read it, you should not read the names of the letters, but instead say the sounds of the letters. This type of ear training for phonics and phonemic awareness should continue throughout the teaching process, even well after your child have grasped this concept.

It can be applied to words with increasing difficulty. Again, please always keep in mind that not all children can readily blend the sounds to hear the word, so you must be patient, and drill this for days, weeks, or even months if needed. Consistency and frequency is the key to success here, and not sporadic binge sessions.

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