phonics -where to start

(12 Posts)
gg1234 Thu 19-Oct-17 22:42:06

Hello all

I am a new mum in primary and quite confused as to where to start phonics for my 4 year old .I have googled a lot but there seem to be quite a lot of variety .Can someone suggest me which Cds or books to buy to start with .



OP’s posts: |
Tissie Fri 20-Oct-17 00:11:07

Why the anxiety to start so young? You can do plenty with your 4yr old to help prepare him/her for school without formal phonics teaching. Rhyming games, reading and discussing picture books, drawing to develop eye hand co-ordination, recognising his/her name, counting to ten, learning colours, listening to a story, talking about everyday activities/pictures.

gg1234 Fri 20-Oct-17 00:17:39

Tissie - First of all I from a non -naitive English speaking background and morever hearing a lot of friend kids failing the phonics english test really made me think to start early .



OP’s posts: |
Norestformrz Fri 20-Oct-17 04:48:16 is a free course for parents and explains everything you need to know to help your child with phonics. I’d avoid most CDs and DVDs as they aren’t compatible with good UK methods.

jamdonut Fri 20-Oct-17 19:44:35

Why not wait and see what the school does with regard to phonics, and then go from there?
If they do Read, Write, Inc. it there are very particular ways of learning the sounds.
There are parent packs to be had, to help, but if they use another system you will want to use the same as school so as not to confuse your child.
Why not let school do the worrying about whether she 'passes' the phonics test in Year 1. That is, after all , what school is there for!

Imaginosity Fri 20-Oct-17 22:10:09

I found the jolly phonics app really good- for teaching me as well as DS

Kokeshi123 Sat 21-Oct-17 02:17:22

Try Jolly Phonics. The workbooks are really fun for children to work through. You don't need all the Jolly Phonics "kit"--just the workbooks and flashcards are enough for practice. You can also snip up the last page of the workbook and use the words as mini flashcards. You can also make your own CVC flashcards with cardboard and a pen--jam, tip, lid, sip, mat, fan, etc.

Do sounds, not letters, and don't add "uh" sounds after the sounds. S should be a hissing sound, not "suh." F should be a puff of air, not "fuh." The voiced consonants like b and g are impossible to say without adding a small uh sound, but try to keep the sound as short as possible.

Do not teach letter names or waste time drilling them on the order or singing the ABC song. Stick to lower case letters for the moment, following the pen strokes suggested in the workbook, and stay away from capital letters for the moment. If you introduce caps and lower case together, they end up sticking random caps in half their words and you waste time and energy trying to correct the habit.

Have fun and do just a tiny bit at a time!


Tissie Sat 21-Oct-17 15:13:27

gg1234 Sorry I did not have all the facts. If you want to do phonics you need to know the sounds to use for the letters. If you go onto youtube and type in "Jolly phonics sounds" you will find lots of videos to help you. I especially like letterland because you get the correct sound with a visual image for each letter and children love them.

Norestformrz Sat 21-Oct-17 15:49:39

I’ve taught children who learnt using and the majority of them struggled because they knew the character names and couldn’t progress when alternative spellings were introduced or used the character names when trying to sound out new words. I’ve also had kids who were so focused on the Jolly Phonics stories and songs they’d say things like r is for puppy and n is for aeroplane confused

Kokeshi123 Mon 23-Oct-17 01:44:04

I agree. Don't think all the songs and gimmicks of JP are especially helpful (but then a parent, funding everything out of their own pocket is unlikely to buy all this stuff anyway). The workbooks, however, are basically fine. I think it's a good idea to keep things very simple--break words down into sounds, then map them onto letters and letter combos. Just notebooks and pencils are fine for doing this. You can make your own flashcards for next to nothing as well!

I live overseas and am surrounded by non-teacher parents who have to teach their kids literacy with no professional help whatsoever. The British parents who use JP followed by the new ORT series (not the old ORT books) seem to do well and their kids learn to read. There are some God-awful North American programs out there, though...

Ineedfun Mon 23-Oct-17 01:50:06

I would see what the system the school uses.ours doesn't uses Bug Club and so Jolly Phonics has confused some children whose parents used it as it's different. Those children had had to relearn which is harder I think.

Kokeshi123 Mon 23-Oct-17 01:50:41

The other thing about the JP workbooks---this is a synthetic phonics series which is nevertheless easy for non-specialists to use, because it is an all-in-one package and you just open up at page 1, and off you go.

I actually do prefer some of the other synthetic phonics series, if I am honest, but these are often not really designed for non-specialists working one-on-one with their own child. I use Read Write Inc with my own Saturday school class, and it is an amazing series, but you have to order stuff in packs (not one by one), it is not always clear to a non-teacher how you are supposed to teach things, and so on!

I usually recommend JP to parents, simply because it is something straightforward for them and it uses SSP. I know from experience that if parents aren't given a straightforward option like this, they are more likely to end up choosing something which looks easy to use and which has been designed to be parent-friendly but which does not teach phonics properly, like a lot of the off-the-shelf American "reading schemes" that are sold in English-language bookshops where I live. They are awful, but I can see why parents often pick them--they look simple and approachable to a non-specialist.

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