Phonics Test Year 1 Query

(257 Posts)
NigellaEllaElla Fri 14-Jun-13 12:12:55

DS is doing the "Test" next week. I did a few flash card words with him last night and just have a query.

He sounds out the word but if it has a "y" at the end he sounds it as "yu" as in the letter name, not sound. (Not sure yu is best way of explaining it but can't think of alternative) rather than "ee" but then still says the word correctly.

So for "Happy" he might say "H a p p yu - Happy"

Because he is saying "yu" not "ee" when sounding will this count as a fail even though he knows the word correctly?

Bloody stupid test. He's a really good reader for his age, possibly a little too good cause I don't think it will do him any favours in a test like this!

Thanks in advance for your help.

Bunnyjo Fri 14-Jun-13 22:06:41

...and she did say that the more able readers often didn't perform as well in a test of this kind.

That is the opposite of what DD's teacher said and I would be very hmm about a teacher saying something like that. Yes, there are pseudo words put in there that are designed to ascertain a child's ability to decode using phonics, but a 5/6yr old is going to encounter unknown words every day and, if they are an able reader, they will be able to read them despite not knowing what they mean.

thegreylady Fri 14-Jun-13 22:13:26

of course Feenie-it's just a bit of fun and an apocryphal thing which many teachers smile at in the early stages of learning to teach reading smile

Feenie Fri 14-Jun-13 22:15:52

It makes roll my eyes, I'm afraid!

mrz Fri 14-Jun-13 22:16:40

I would imagine what your son is doing is that he is sounding out the word and says "yuh" because that was the first way he was taught but realises that doesn't sound right so automatically corrects to the /ee/ (without saying all the sounds again)

Nigella English is a complex language but is phonetic and all those words work perfectly well with phonics.
There are 26 letters in the alphabet but -

There are 44(ish) sounds in English (varies slightly according to accent)
There are 175 common ways to spell those sounds

A sound can be written using one, two, three or four letters

A sound can be represented by more than one spelling - the sound /ai/ has 9 spellings <ai> rain, <ay> day, <ea> break, <a-e> came, <a> apron, <eigh> eight, <aigh> straight, <ae> sundae <ei> veil.

one spelling can represent different sounds
<ea> /ai/ steak /ee/ meat /e/ bread

<ough> /oa/ in though
<ou> /oo/ in rough & soup /o/ in cough
<gh> /f/ rough & cough
<ve> /v/ in live & have
<wh> /w/ in what which
<a> /o/ in what, was, watch, want,wasp
<e> /i/ in English and pretty (unusual spelling)
<y> /i/ in pretty and mystery
<eo> /ee/ in people
<ea> /ee/ as beautiful, meat, leaf
<u> /yoo/ beautiful, unit, unicorn
<i> /ee/ beautiful, ski, casino
<a> /or/ water, walk
<ie> /e/ friend

www.sounds-write.co.uk/docs/sounds_write_common_spellings_of_the_consonants_and_vowels.pdf

NigellaEllaElla Fri 14-Jun-13 22:28:25

My point really Mrz is that we don't learn all those words phonetically but more by memory and the context of the sentence they are in. Hence me saying there is more to reading than learning basic phonetic rules. Lets remember that these are children of 5/6/7 that are being tested, not English Language graduates.

learnandsay Fri 14-Jun-13 22:30:20

Er, well, that's the order of the letters now that ghoti is in our language. Language isn't static. And our spelling leaves the door open to such new things. So it's not as much bollocks as some would like it to be; it's just a bit fishy.

learnandsay Fri 14-Jun-13 22:49:46

You don't have to emphasise the uh part of yu(h)

You don't have to say
da-yuh
dayuhuh
dayooh

It's just yu as in the fist part of yes. You don't say yuh-es.

Say hooray, today's Mayday's grey play.

Bunnyjo Fri 14-Jun-13 23:05:25

The phoneme is not Yuh L&S; it's a consonant /y/ phoneme (short sound, not elongated with the 'uh' at the end) in yes, yesterday, yellow. I believe the /y/ phoneme is in words like in onion and bunion.

In day, may, play it's the long vowel sound /&#257;/ phoneme. The same phoneme is in bacon, made, laid, vein.

In happy and baby, it's the long vowel sound /&#275;/ sound. The same phoneme is in me, bee, beat etc.

Bunnyjo Fri 14-Jun-13 23:07:58

long vowel sound /a/ and long vowel sound /e/. I forgot MN won't let you put a macron over the letter!

learnandsay Fri 14-Jun-13 23:15:02

Precisely. I'm making the point in response to someone who said that to use the yu as in yellow in day, you would have to say day-uh, which is of course nonsense.

Feenie Fri 14-Jun-13 23:17:11

Oh dear...

learnandsay Fri 14-Jun-13 23:18:08

Oh dah...

Feenie Fri 14-Jun-13 23:20:57

hmm

learnandsay Fri 14-Jun-13 23:25:21

wink shock hmm confused

[ o o ]
iiiiiiiiiiiiii
_/-\_

Bunnyjo Fri 14-Jun-13 23:28:15

I think the problem is people tend to confuse graphemes and phonemes. I think it was mrz who said there were 44ish phonemes, but 175 common ways to spell those phonemes.

The y in day is a completely different phoneme to the y in yes, and completely different to the phoneme in happy.

L&S you said that it is a yu, but I don't say /y/ in hooray, may, play etc - there is no /y/ sound there at all...

learnandsay Fri 14-Jun-13 23:35:41

I haven't seen a significant difference in the y in day and the one in yellow. Saying a difference exists isn't saying that any such (supposed) difference matters.

learnandsay Fri 14-Jun-13 23:38:06

the pronunciation of the phoneme ai includes the y sound within it.

ai would be spelled aye

That's part of the reason why phonics is bollocks.

IsabelleRinging Fri 14-Jun-13 23:38:30

learnandsay ????? There is no sound for the letter y in day???? The y is behaving as a vowel with the letter a to make a new sound which is ai. It could have been spelt dai if it were not for the convention of the i being replaced with the y at the end of of a word.

Bunnyjo Fri 14-Jun-13 23:39:39

Really?! You pronounce the 'y' in day or happy the same as the 'y' in yellow? Unless you have a very broad regional accent (that I haven't come across), I doubt that very much...

IsabelleRinging Fri 14-Jun-13 23:40:18

Sorry, crossposts, took too long to post!

Bunnyjo Fri 14-Jun-13 23:40:33

Thank God for sense IsabelleRinging

learnandsay Fri 14-Jun-13 23:41:17

No, for the reason stated above your post.

learnandsay Fri 14-Jun-13 23:42:39

I didn't mention happy. Happy ends in an ee sound.

You don't say day-ee (or at least I don't.)

Bunnyjo Fri 14-Jun-13 23:48:26

L&S, I honestly think you confuse yourself.

I haven't seen a significant difference in the y in day and the one in yellow. Saying a difference exists isn't saying that any such (supposed) difference matters.

So what were you trying to say?

I will repeat part of a previous post, in the hope it gets through...

In day, may, play it's the long vowel sound /a/ phoneme. The same phoneme is in bacon, made, laid, vein.

In happy and baby, it's the long vowel sound /a/ sound. The same phoneme is in me, bee, beat etc.

The reason I included happy in my post(s) is because the OP used that as a specific example!

Bunnyjo Fri 14-Jun-13 23:49:17

long vowel /e/ sound in happy and baby. Bloody phone will be the death of me!

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