Letters and Sounds. A phoneme can be represented by more than one letter. This is called a diagraph.

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1 Phonics Workshop Over recent years there has been research and conclusions made about the teaching of phonics to aid the development of reading and writing. In 2007 Letters and Sounds resource was published by the Department for Education and Skills. It aims to build children's speaking and listening skills in their own right as well as to prepare children for learning to read by developing their phonic knowledge and skills. It sets out a detailed and systematic programme for teaching phonic skills for children starting by the age of five, with the aim of them becoming fluent readers by age seven. The letters and sounds programme focuses on securing word recognition skills as these are essential for children to decode (read) and encode (spell) words accurately with ease and so concentrate on comprehending and composing text. High-quality phonic teaching secures the crucial skills of word recognition that, once mastered, enable children to read fluently and automatically. Once children are fluent readers, they are able to concentrate on the meaning of the text. However, the balance between word recognition and language comprehension shifts as children acquire and secure automatic decoding skills and progress from learning to read to reading to learn for purpose and pleasure. The ultimate goal of learning to read is comprehension. At Heatherside we use a combination of Letters and Sounds and Jolly Phonics to introduce, teach and reinforce letter/sound recognition. This is to ensure children are accessing phonics in a variety of ways to gain the quickest and most robust letter/sound correspondence.

2 Letters and Sounds Sounds (phonemes) are represented by letters (graphemes) English is an alphabetic language unlike Chinese, for example, where whole words are represented by characters. British spoken English generally uses 44 sounds or phonemes. Phase 1 and 2 We teach the children the smallest unit of sound called a phoneme. Below is the order in which the phonemes are taught and practised. Correct pronunciation is vital! We use the Jolly Phonic actions for each letter and sound to encourage multi sensory learning. Set 1 letters = s, a, t, p Set 2 letters = i, n, m, d Set 3 letters = g, o, c, k Set 4 letters = ck, e, u, r A phoneme can be represented by more than one letter. This is called a diagraph. Sounds Basket, we play games where the children match the letter cards to the object s initial sound. Sounds bingo and other board games I spy with my little eye something starting with. Phase 3 By the time they reach Phase 3, children will already be able to blend and segment words containing the 19 letters taught in Phase 2. The purpose of this phase is to introduce 25 new graphemes, most comprising 2 letters such as oa. Set 6: j, v, w, x Set 7: y, z, zz, qu Consonant digraphs: ch, sh, th, ng Vowel digraphs: ai, ee, igh, oa, oo, ar, or, ur, ow, oi, ear, air, ure, er

3 During Phase 3, children will also learn the letter names using an alphabet song, although they will continue to use the sounds when decoding words. They will continue to practise CVC blending (Consonant, vowel, consonant) and segmentation and will apply this knowledge to reading and spelling simple two-syllable words and captions. Tricky words During Phase 3, the following tricky words (which cannot yet be decoded) are introduced: He, she, we, me, be, was, you, they, all, are, my, her Phonics is the step up to word recognition. Automatic reading of all words, both tricky & decodable, is the ultimate goal. Phase Four When children start Phase Four of the Letters and Sounds phonics programme, they will know a grapheme for each of the 42 phonemes. They will be able to blend phonemes to read CVC (consonant-vowel-consonant) words and segment in order to spell them. Children will also have begun reading straightforward two-syllable words and simple captions, as well as reading and spelling some tricky words. In Phase 4, no new graphemes are introduced. The main aim of this phase is to consolidate the children's knowledge and to help them learn to read and spell words which have adjacent consonants, such as trap, string and milk. Tricky words During Phase 4, the following tricky words (which can't yet be decoded) are introduced: Said, have, like, so, do, some, come, were, there, little, one, when, out, what, Phase 5 Children entering Phase Five will already be able to read and spell words with adjacent consonants, such as trap, string and flask. They will also be able to read and spell some polysyllabic words e.g. Heatherside.In Phase Five, children will learn to broaden their knowledge of graphemes and phonemes. For example, they already know ai as in rain, but now they will be introduced to ay as in day and a-e as in make. Alternative pronunciations for graphemes will also be introduced, e.g. ea in tea, head and break. With practice, speed at recognising and blending graphemes will improve. Word and spelling knowledge will be worked on extensive-

4 Tricky words During Phase 5, the following tricky words (which cannot yet be decoded) are introduced: Oh, their, people, Mr, Mrs, looked, called, asked, could Phase 6 At the start of Phase Six of Letters and Sounds, children will have already learnt the most frequently occurring grapheme phoneme correspondences in the English language. They will be able to read many familiar words automatically. When they come across unfamiliar words they will in many cases be able to decode them quickly and quietly using their well-developed sounding and blending skills. With more complex unfamiliar words they will often be able to decode them by sounding them out. Eg words with s & -es suffixes, Adding suffixes to words ending in ing, ed, s, er, est, y, en Adding suffixes to words ending in y, eg marrying, married, funnier, funniest. Adding suffixes to words ending in a single consonant eg stop, becomes stopped, stopping, mad will become madder, maddest etc At this stage children should be able to spell words phonemically although not always correctly. In Phase Six the main aim is for children to become more fluent readers and more accurate spellers.

5 Listening As we begin to teach the children the skills that they will need in order to be successful readers and writers, we focus on speaking and listening activities. Phase 1 and 2 Making time to listen to the child talking as we greet them in the morning or at playtime, while we work any time! Showing that we are interested in what they are talking about looking at the child, smiling, nodding our head, asking a question or making a response to show that we really have been listening. Using a collection of different toy creatures for example, a duck, a snake, an alien, say the sound it might make as you play together, for example, quackquack, ssssssss, yuk-yuk, and encourage your child to copy you. Listening to the environment we sit quietly and listen to the sounds, both inside and outside the classroom. Can the children tell you what sounds they hear, in the order in which they heard them? Play-a-tune and follow me! Using your voice or some simple shakers, drums and beaters, then play a simple tune and ask your child to copy. Have fun! Use puppets and toys to make up stories or retell known ones to their peers. Record the children telling the story and play it back to them. Explore body sounds, sounds in the environment, the difference in the sounds of percussion instruments, rhythm and rhyme, voice sounds and alliteration - words that all begin with the same initial sound, sad, Sammy snake, big, bad bug. Phase 3 and 4 Listen for the sounds you can hear in simple three lettered words, what do they start with and end with ( cat, bag, his) Listen for the sounds in a word that have two letters but only one sound (sh, ch, th, ng, ar, or, ou, er, oo ) Listen for the vowel sounds a e i o u ( these may be represented by the graphemes (ai a_e ) ( ee a_e ) ( ie igh i_e ) ( o_e ) ( u_e) Listen for the sounds in a word that have three letters but only one sound (ear, air, ure, igh) Listen for words that start with two consonants ( st, sp, tr, gr, sc) Listen for words that start with three consonants ( str, spr,, thr, scr Phase 5 and 6 Phoneme spotter stories listen for a specific phoneme, put hands up when they hear it Dictating sentences using correct spelling pattern

6 Segmenting In order to write and spell, a child must segment a word into its component phonemes and choose a letter or letter combination to represent the phonemes. The emphasis is on helping children to hear the separate sounds in words and to create spoken sounds. Phase 1 and 2 Explaining to the children that we are stretching the word or pulling the word out of our mouth slowly so we can hear the separate sounds. Teaching the children how to segment each word to spell. E.g. cat = c-a-t We aim for the children to read the whole word automatically. These activities are all done orally. The emphasis is on helping children to hear the separate sounds in words and to create spoken sounds. Sound-talking or Robot-talking we find real objects around the classroom that have three phonemes (sounds) and practise sound talk. First, we just let them listen, then see if they will join in, for example, saying: I spy a p-e-g peg., I spy a c-u-p cup. Where s your other s-o-ck sock? Simon says put your hands on your h-ea-d., Simon says touch your ch-i-n. Quick write words we set a time (count of ten on our fingers), then call out one word at a time and get the children to spell it on a small whiteboard, against the time. Phoneme frames we have a frame with 2,3,4 spaces and Velcro letters, when we begin to write we encourage the children to segment the word into the individual sounds then find them and put them on the frame to write the word. Phase 3 and 4 Use sound talk (robot talk) to break the word up into the sounds you can hear (segmenting) c a t sh o p r ai n f air s t op s t r i p Segment pseudo words (Alien words) ( names of aliens - v o g t ai d s o t e ) Phase 5 and 6 Breaking words into syllables and counting the syllables to aid spelling.

7 Blending We teach the children how to blend or merge sounds together to read each word, in the right order, to read a word. E.g. c-a-t = cat. Phase 1 and 2 Explaining to the children that we are squashing or pushing the individual sounds together to make a word and that this is the opposite of segmenting. Listening to sound-talking or Robot-talking we sound talk an object name, can the children blend the sounds and then find the matching objects around the classroom.? Simon says in sound talk, sound talk an instruction can they blend the sounds and follow it eg. s-i-t u-p Flash cards we show the children the letter cards 2 or 3 initially, they make the sound and action for each, we then say them increasingly quickly with less time between each sound until they are blending and we can hear the whole word. Yes or no sentences we write a simple caption on the board eg a dog is red children say and then blend the letters of one word at a time to read the sentence and respond with thumbs up or down if they think it is true or not. Phase 3 and 4 Blend the sounds together to say the word. Blend the sounds together or pseudo (Alien) words Phase 5 and 6 Consonant cluster domino, put the dominoes together and read the words. Racing with blends game, find alternative endings and creating new words.

8 Phonics Screening A Government screening check is undertaken during the summer term of Year 1. This is a test of 40 real and pseudo (alien) words that are designed to check the application of phonemic segmenting and blending upto and including Phase 5. The screening is undertaken by the school, usually by the class teacher and the scores are recorded on a test sheet. The score for each child is reported to the Government and the overall percentage score is included in the school s published data. It is the expectation that most children will pass the Phonic Screening if they are secure at Phase 5 of Letters and Sounds. However, if a child does not pass the Screening Check they are re-tested at the end of Year 2. At Heatherside Infants we use the Screening Check to further support our target setting and tracking of pupil progress. Those scores that are below the pass mark are analysed and used as teaching points to further support and develop the phonic understanding and application so as to ensure robust phonic knowledge and reading.

9 How can you support your child at home. Websites word and sentence level activities Online games for children

10 Glossary of Terms Alien words words created using phonemes that are not real to consolidate phonic segmenting and blending. Blending building words to read Consonant - a letter which is not a vowel CVC - a word containing consonant vowel consonant Decode - to read words Digraph is a two letter grapheme i.e. ch, sh, oa ( two letters one sound) Encode - to spell words Grapheme - a grapheme is a symbol of a phoneme, that is, a letter or group of letters representing a sound. Phoneme - a sound in a word. There are 44 phonemes in English. Phonics phonics consists of knowledge of the skills of segmenting and blending, knowledge of the alphabet code. Segmenting breaking words down into phonemes to spell Sound talk is used to describe the process of saying the phonemes in words Split digraph ( magic e) - the e at the end allows the vowel to say its letter name i.e. cone Trigraph is a three letter grapheme where three letters represent on phoneme i.e air, igh, ear. ( three letters one sound) Tricky words - words that cannot be sounded out so we use letter names instead. Vowel - letters a, e, i, o, u

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