DD2 can't make the leap to blending - any advice?(16 Posts)
DD2 can sound out the separate letters in a word but can't seem to make the leap to blend it into a word - ie she says d-o-g but then says 'puppy' or b-a-g but says 'rucksack' as those things are pictured. Is it something that will come with time or does it need to be flagged up now? She is in Reception and March born. (Her older sister has quite an advanced reading age and was reading pretty much fluently by this point so not sure if DD2 is behind or it is just 'normal'.)
It took until after Xmas definitely for my DD to start blending she was in reception last year. I don't think she even got sent home reading books until spring term. She's doing really well, top table. Don't stress.
We found with DD that she sounded it out then guessed! and then I sounded it out - slowly at first so she could hear all the letter sounds then got faster until letters blended into a word. Giving her a chance after each sounding out to say the word. It took a little while but once it clicked it was amazing. Remember she's only been doing this 3 months.
March 2011 I assume? Exactly the same as my DD2 (also with an older sister). She doesn't quite get blending. She can sign out almost every letter, most of the time (confuses herself every now and again) but putting together 3 letter words just doesn't work. We can often manage 2 letters (so gap, I will hide the g and she will manage "ap" and I will say add g .. g.. ap g... ap, and she will loudly say "din". Ummm... no.) Teacher isn't worried, and I don't believe all the other kids have it yet. I'm just going to keep trying in the hope it clicks.
I'm on DC3 also reception age so third time through this phase and its been different with each child.
Repitition, repitition, repitition. It will sink in over time then no doubt there will be phases she flys through.
Over half term DD had some letters home to learn so we made a little game of making words from them. She's been strong on her letters for quite a while but resistant to making words herself. She memorises whole words well and knows lots of what school call the tricky words through this method but wasn't building, just memorising for a long time.
I drew little pictures and we put the sounds together to make the object in the pictures.
We used 'at' as the second sound then she had to find the first letter so put m at, h at, b at. Then she copied out the word and drew her own pictures.
Some days she likes to play numbers and letters, others she doesn't. Its really early days so not worth stressing if the teacher isn't.
My DD took ages to get the sounds and then ages to blend, but she got there in the end with loads of practise. There's an app called Reading Raven that helped a bit.
When DD (autumn baby) started reception it took her till way after Christmas to start blending. The teacher gave use little individual letter cards to make 3-letter combinations and keep practising and we gradually increased the letters and then the word lenght. You will get there, some just take longer than others, and it's not always age related: my other DD (summer baby) took to reading really easily and was blending from day one...
Oh, thank you all. I feel reassured. I was just a little anxious as I think DD2 is going to find things a lot harder than DD1.
Does she know the individual sounds that she should have been taught by now? Concentrate on single sounds at first; at least if she knows those, she is on track for the next stage.
If you can, cover pictures so she isn't looking for 'clues'. And don't just tell her the answer, but put the onus back on her by asking her another question: so in your example, when she says 'rucksack', ask her what is the first sound she can hear in 'rucksack', and exaggerate the 'rrrrr' sound (not easy to do maybe, unless you are Scottish!)
If she has a white board and pen, or paper and felt-tip, see if she can shape the letters; or do them on a shallow tray of sand or flour.
Reading is a very advanced concept and skill, and if she is only five, it is little more than two or three years since she first learnt to TALK - so she has come a very long way!
If you want to do more with her, there is a very useful book for all the family:
An inexpensive and easy to use book, that can encourage children with reading, spelling and writing, and really help them to understand Phonics, is reviewed in the MN Book Reviews section. Just search ‘Phonics’ and my name.
Can she hear the blend if you say the sounds for her? She might find that easier. Try something with longer consonants, Mmmm-a-nnnn is generally a bit easier to hear as you can make all the sounds long and go smoothly from one to the next. Say it slowly then speed it up gradually until they can hear the word.
But YY quite normal still at this stage.
I agree start with words she can hold onto the first sound mmmmm- sssssss- rrrrrrrr etc
Try blending through the word adding as she goes rather than the whole word in one go.
So /m/ /a/ = ma /n/ man
/s/ /a/= sa /t/ sat
Thanks for all the tips. Am just going to keep plugging away hoping it will suddenly 'click' at some point!
OP - As it's a month since you first enquired - have you noticed any progress at all? It does take a long time for some children.
If blending isn't working then I would suggest you work on 'oral blending' as this skill is a prerequisite to being able to blending in reading. Basically, this means practising blending without the complication of needing to recognise the letters. A way to do this is to get some toys or use a picture book and say 'can you see the c-a-t?' Etc (a bit like playing eye-spy but you are saying all the sounds). I would start this with word of 3 or less sounds. If your child is struggling with this, give the, just 2 pictures and say 'which is the p-e-n?' etc. It helps them practise actually listening to the sounds, rather than just guessing.
Sorry, just read that back (should have previewed it first!) Hope you can make sense of it even with the horrible mistakes made from typing on an iPhone.
Popping back in to say tonight DD blended some words (CVC) all by herself! Know there is still a long way to go but feeling relieved! Will definitely try oral blending Teacher - that is a good tip. DD now knows all letter sounds/names (mixes up b and d sometimes but think that's quite common). Hoping we are on the verge of it all clicking into place.
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