Again on phonemes, /oo/

(72 Posts)
Arkadia Sat 27-Jan-18 11:28:49

Last week we got our new homework with all the words and phonemes for the term. The first is the phoneme /oo/, which, we are told, can be spelled "oo', "u-e", "ew", "ue", "u".
Within the list I see words like: June, moon, book, cute and so on.
Am I alone in finding all this very odd?
Enclosed are some examples of what they have been doing.

OP’s posts: |
Tomorrowillbeachicken Sat 27-Jan-18 11:45:15

Book isn’t oo in all accents though.

Arkadia Sat 27-Jan-18 11:46:54

Tomorrow, ???

OP’s posts: |
PineappleScrunchie Sat 27-Jan-18 11:51:06

Is that work that has been checked by the teacher? There are several different phonemes being used in those examples.

Kokeshi123 Sat 27-Jan-18 11:58:55

I'm not a phonics expert, but they seem to have mixed up three quite different phonemes -- (long) /oo/, short /oo/ and /yoo/.

What they should be doing is teaching each phoneme separately, including all of its various spelling variations.


Long /oo/:
Short /oo/:

Once the kids are clear on that, they should be looking at "code overlap"--where one grapheme (letter or combo of letters) can potentially represent more than one sound. So, prepare lists of words that contain a particular grapheme--say, u--pronounced in different ways, and then get the kids to sort them into two or more different groups.

So, you would take a list of u words like bush, sun, bull, full, luck, bun, pull, put, rug, and then sort them as follows:

Some u words have a short /oo/ sound--bush, bull, full, pull, put
Most u have an /u/ sound---sun, fun, luck, bun, rug

Sounds like your kids' teachers are a bit muddled about how this works?

WanderlustHenpeck Sat 27-Jan-18 12:00:51

oo is tricky. There is a long 'oo' sound like moon, flew, blue, cute. There is also the short 'oo' sound which makes more of an 'u' sound you'd find in book, foot.

I would have taught them separately, so words like book would not have been included.

RafaIsTheKingOfClay Sat 27-Jan-18 12:03:26

I think they’ve mixed up 3 different phonemes there.

Has that been marked as correct? Because in many of those columns you’ve got the same spelling representing 2 sounds.

That is something that children need to know but it isn’t something that should be mixed up in the same phoneme chart like that.


Feenie Sat 27-Jan-18 12:21:04

There is a long 'oo' sound like moon, flew, blue, cute

Moon and blue are /oo/ but flew and cute are a different /ew/ sound.
Do you really pronounce 'cute' as 'coot', wanderlust?

Arkadia Sat 27-Jan-18 12:22:34

Ok, so I am not imagining things then...
Yes, the work was checked and the list of words is a mix of the three sounds.

On top of that, and to confuse matters further, the options of graphemes given is neither exhaustive nor does it apply to each sounds (so, in some cases some graphemes are missing, in others they don't apply).
Parents' night is very soon, so I will raise this (again...).

OP’s posts: |
Norestformrz Sat 27-Jan-18 13:27:01

There are a number of different phonemes on that sheet

In pull, push the spelling u is the sound /u/ (varies according to accent) but in flu it's /oo/
In cute the spelling u-e is /yoo/ but in flute it's /oo/
In could, should, would the spelling oul represents the sound /u/
In group the ou represents the sound /oo/
In good, book, took the spelling oo is the sound /u/ but in shampoo and zoo it's /oo/

Shocking homework and phonic knowledge !

Arkadia Sat 27-Jan-18 14:20:34

Mrz, you see where I am coming from.
Thing is, I don't think phonics are really understood in Scotland. DD's Teacher 1 (of 2) candidly admitted to me that she doesn't know them.

OP’s posts: |
Arkadia Sat 27-Jan-18 14:22:25

I wonder what book they got that exercise (the story of oo) from and what the right answers should be.

OP’s posts: |
RafaIsTheKingOfClay Sat 27-Jan-18 14:29:54

The exercise itself or the worksheet is probably fine. It’s just in the hands of someone who has some huge gaps in their subject knowledge.

Arkadia Sat 27-Jan-18 14:45:37

Oh, it seems to be from Twinkl, but I can't be bothered to sign up to read the answer ;)

OP’s posts: |
user789653241 Sat 27-Jan-18 15:00:31

They give out teacher's copy as a homework? That sounds a bit cheating for the teacher.

Arkadia Sat 27-Jan-18 15:05:17

Given that it is marked "extension work", probably it comes after some lessons in "oo". However, I don't see the point of the exercise in any case as I is banging together different phonemes that have in common only the symbol /oo/. In real life you hardly end up pairing them anyway.

I wonder why these two sounds (short and long oo) share a symbol. The long "oo" could be /ew/ or /ui/ as I don't think are being used elsewhere (as symbol of a phoneme, not as a grapheme). Who knows... I am sure there is a very valid reason for that ;)

OP’s posts: |
Arkadia Sat 27-Jan-18 15:06:08

Irvine, don't follow what you are saying. I just googled it.

OP’s posts: |
user789653241 Sat 27-Jan-18 15:21:41

I just thought it was part of homework, which she needed to find "oo" word from the story, which isn't meant to be used as a homework, since it says teacher's copy.

Arkadia Sat 27-Jan-18 15:37:51

Hahahahaha, I hadn't noticed it :D

OP’s posts: |
user789653241 Sat 27-Jan-18 15:43:28

No offence, but I think you should get her a tutor.

Valerrie Sat 27-Jan-18 15:47:59

Oo alone has short and long versions.

"Oo poo in the zoo" is long
"Oo look at a book" is short

The others wouldn't be classed as Oo as they aren't spelled "oo", despite their sounds. They are different graphemes and shouldn't be marked as "oo" graphemes.

TenThousandSpoons Sat 27-Jan-18 15:56:15

I think the teacher doesn’t understand the activity. Flu is the only correct answer in the first column. The u doesn’t sound like /oo/ in any of the other words.

Norestformrz Sat 27-Jan-18 16:36:16

*"*^*The others wouldn't be classed as Oo as they aren't spelled "oo", despite their sounds. They are different graphemes and shouldn't be marked as "oo" graphemes.*^"
Yes they would phonemes in English can have multiple spellings (graphemes if you prefer) and the same spelling (grapheme) can represent multiple sounds (phonemes). That's why English is complex and needs good teaching.

NeganLovesLucille Sat 27-Jan-18 16:46:49

If that work has been marked as correct, then the teacher really needs some phonics training!

The /oo/ phoneme can be made with the following graphemes: oo (moon); ue (blue); u-e (June); ew (flew) and a few other less common graphemes.

Words such as bull, book or put just do not have the /oo/ phoneme at all. If they did the bull would sound like bool!

(I have taught phonics for years!)

RafaIsTheKingOfClay Sat 27-Jan-18 16:53:38

The sheet is talking about the phoneme /oo/ not the grapheme. It’s looking for all the different ways that sound can be spelt and asking the child to sort words according to the spelling.

The second sheet is a typical phoneme spotter sheet and children would be expected to highlight any words with the sound rather than just the spelling.

Unfortunately they seem to have given a very mixed bag of words to sort.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in