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Reading help...

(63 Posts)
Houseworkprocrastinator Wed 16-Jan-13 22:19:04

I need a little bit of help with explaining some sounds to my daughter. In school they follow the jolly phonics (i think) and since doing the initial sounds in reception, they haven't brought any sounds home so i have no idea what they are learning. ("nothing" according to her) She is currently in year 1 but i think a little ahead in her reading than the majority of the class but i am now struggling to help her with the 'rules' when reading.

Things that have come up recently are...

when CH makes a c sound (she has had words like archaeology, chameleon and character)

when S makes a sh sound (measure, unusual, sugar etc)

Are there any rules to help explain when these happen?

we have also been having words ending in TION and SION are these taught as whole sounds?

Thanks in advance...

kilmuir Wed 16-Jan-13 22:23:43

why not go in to school and ask the teacher? they will best be able to advise.
My children have never been very forthcoming regarding what they are doing in class!

Houseworkprocrastinator Thu 17-Jan-13 10:09:13

I could do but i have seen lots of good advice on here from teachers and parents, I don't find her teacher very approachable this year, she always seems like you are taking up her time.
I know my daughter hasn't covered these things in school as she is pretty good and once she has been taught something she tends to know it then (may need a little reminding) But i dont know where they are in their phonics learning, if they are still doing any at all. I just wanted some tips on how to explain it and rules as to when they are like that, if there are rules.
I have dyslexia myself so i do struggle a little bit with the more complex sounds.

learnandsay Thu 17-Jan-13 10:11:54

The words that you've posted where ch sounds like c are all Greek words, (or from Greek roots.) And in the other cases the s comes just before the letter u


have a look at more words and see if these are true there too.

Houseworkprocrastinator Thu 17-Jan-13 20:55:46

thanks, but i don't think "if it is of Greek origin use the c sound" will work for a 6 year old smile

and also there are plenty of words that have SU that don't make an sh sound sun, Sunday, surprise.. etc

Was really looking for any ideas to help her read them, some of the words she can guess but sometimes if it is a word she hasn't come across a lot she cant work it out.

HelpOneAnother Thu 17-Jan-13 21:07:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Feenie Thu 17-Jan-13 21:09:38

This chart should help.

Houseworkprocrastinator Thu 17-Jan-13 21:15:15

I'm sorry but i don't think i am explaining myself very well, what i am asking is, is there i rule to help her recognise when to sound them that way or is it just a 'try them both' type thing. how is it taught in phonics lessons in school?

like when C is followed by an E it make a S sound (which by the way i had no idea this was the case until teaching her to read)

my problem is i think she is a bit ahead of the actual teaching in school and i am trying to do it myself, i have managed up until now but the latest lot of books seem to have more complicated words in. With my dyslexia it can sometimes be like the blind leading the blind, and i don't want to just tell her what the words say i want her to work them out.

Shattereddreams Thu 17-Jan-13 21:15:18

Housework our daughters are similar. I posted last week about sounding out long words and lack of phonics.

I sort of feel that my DD is reading way ahead of any phonics they are learning. She can read tion and sion words. We recently had a read write inc book with ure ere ur sounds. Dd finds these trickier than ORT to read. So I wander round in circles thinking school are failing her. whole other thread grin

I wonder if perhaps we over think the phonics due to the die hards on MN? It's very feasible, they are clearly very successful in teaching it. However our school is full of dinosaurs and not following current guidelines whatsoever.

Makes you feel somewhat lacking.

I've decided DD is reading way ahead of her peers. Her teacher doesn't care or seem to notice.
We are just enjoying books at home. This is a very recent decision. !

Shattereddreams Thu 17-Jan-13 21:20:07

Just to add. I too am dyslexic.
Dd also learnt Jolly Phonics last year in reception. Once she had learnt them all (Feb) it simply stopped. They didn't teach her any more sounds after that.

MN teachers are like MNetters themselves. They are the cleverest, most hard working and best teachers there are. Hence all the teacher bashing I reckon!

Bunnyjo Thu 17-Jan-13 21:22:02

learnandsay - the phoneme for the s in treasure and sure is different. Treasure is /zh/ like vision and measure, whereas sure is /sh/ like shop, position and mission.

OP - I think that alternative spellings for the /sh/ and /zh/ phoneme are covered in phase 5 of phonics, which is throughout Yr1 usually. I know that DD, who is also Yr 1, covered those last term.

Personally, I would approach the teacher; I haven't a clue how they approach teaching phonics in school, I merely know my own DD's experience and what she has been taught thus far. It appears as though there may be gaps in your DD's phonics knowledge, but that could be because they haven't gone through that part of stage 5 yet. Hopefully a teacher, with experience in teaching phonics, will come along to help.

Houseworkprocrastinator Thu 17-Jan-13 21:23:48

Thanks Feenie, i will have to work through that as it looks quite daunting. smile

Shattered - yes from what i can gather they did the jolly phonics sounds in reception and then i know very little of the phonics stuff in school, she has just kind of picked things up through reading at home. (and i have learned a lot too, after just 'reading' all my life without thinking about it, helping her has made me look at word and what each combination do.) and me teaching her things but i don't know all the correct ways to teach her.

she is very retro and uses the magic E rule grin

Bunnyjo Thu 17-Jan-13 21:24:37

And, as I ended up resettling the restless and teething toddler, I realise I have cross-posted with many others blush

Shattereddreams Thu 17-Jan-13 21:31:31

Still useful bunnyjo

There is no talk of phases in phonics at our school. There doesn't even seem to be any structure to reading full stop. Books sent home are totally erratic. Leaping up and down levels 3 or 4 each time (MN ensures I know exactly what's what!)

Ferguson Thu 17-Jan-13 21:32:37

Hi - ex-TA (male) here :

Gosh! I'm surprised Yr 1 are doing these kind of words, unless you are in a high-flying catchment area. I've worked with Yr 3 or even Yr 4 that couldn't manage many of those words.

As H O A said, children will accept explanations like that, and you could tell her that English is a difficult language and lot of our words came from other countries. I have never known WHY 'ph' has a 'f' sound, as in 'photograph'.

By far MN's most expert person in this field (in fact in most fields!) is mrz and I dare say you have come across her very concise and knowledgeable replies to posts already.

She may reply to you on this 'thread' but if not I don't think there would be any harm in you sending her a PM. (If you haven't done them before they are fairly straight forward, but it does work best if, when you first log in, you tick the 'Remember me till I log out' box.) If you have any problems, come back on here and I'll have a look sometime, though maybe not tonight.

Feenie Thu 17-Jan-13 21:38:43

Gosh! I'm surprised Yr 1 are doing these kind of words, unless you are in a high-flying catchment area

It's standard for Y1 to be working on those kind of Phase 5 phonemes now, Ferguson - high flying or not smile

Shattereddreams Thu 17-Jan-13 21:40:21

Hi ferguson
I just think if a teacher acknowledged to a parent 'Your child is doing remarkably well in their reading' we wouldn't be so stressed out!
So we are left to wonder if they are doing well. I have no idea what other children are doing. I assume my dd is average as teacher hasn't indicated otherwise.

Sorry OP I will get off your thread now!

Ferguson Thu 17-Jan-13 21:42:46

I see I also have cross-posted, and you have had several replies now; but do try mrz, as she will probably give the most understandable explanations.

Feenie Thu 17-Jan-13 21:52:08

I have a good one atm hmm

Ds (Y2) was moved from purple to gold recently, and could read them easily. Then the teacher told them they'd 'made a mistake' and he was only allowed to choose from purple books. I let it go (he reads widely at home anyway).

Then he was moved from purple to gold again. Then they decided it was another 'mistake' and he was only allowed to choose from purple again. At which point I intervened, only because ds was understandably upset.

Have been told tartly that they don't discuss 'moving up' and any upset from ds regarding moving up/back must come from me. And that it doesn't matter which 'level' he reads since it's 'all about enjoyment at this stage' so why not let him stay on fricking gold then. hmm

This to a Literacy coordinator (me). I discussed all this via phone, but the teacher has reiterated it all in reading diary rant - am itching to put in her missing apostrophes, but probably shouldn't.

Houseworkprocrastinator Thu 17-Jan-13 22:09:36

Furguson. It certainly isn't a high flying area. its a council estate.

Shattered - i think a little bit more communication from the teacher would be good, there is loads i would love to know about but she just seems so unapproachable. reception years teacher was lovely and chatty.

The reading level thing really confuses me. i see everyone talking about colours and bands and from what i can gather my daughter is doing the reading recovery scheme but it makes no sense to me. the last week we have had 4 ginn books (2 level 8, one 7 and one 6) and a wild cat book think it was a level 5 but cant remember. they just seem to be random books with the schools levels written in pencil inside the cover.

mrz Fri 18-Jan-13 07:35:17

Houseworkprocrastinator we would teach to try the "ch" sound first (as this is most common) and if that doesn't sound right/make sense to try the alternatives "k" as in Christmas or "sh" as in chef.
<ti> & <si> are alternative spellings for "sh" so the school may teach this or teach tion/sion as a whole so best to ask.

Mashabell Fri 18-Jan-13 08:08:51

we would teach to try the "ch" sound first (as this is most common) and if that doesn't sound right/make sense to try the alternatives "k" as in Christmas or "sh" as in chef.
In short, Houseworkpr..., there are no rules. And because the trying out of alternatives is very tiresome, it's far more economical, when it comes to the words with tricky bits in them, to learn them as whole words.
Phonics is really only the first stage (roughly the first year) of learning to read.

I know this is likely to make Mrz scream or post emoticons again, but

I'll paste in the main ways of spelling the 44 English sounds.
(If anyone would like to have a clearer version of them, with the spellings in bold, they can PM me. It would take hours to do them one by one on here.)

1. a: cat
2. a-e: plate
-ain: rain
-ay: play
3. air: care
4. ar: car
5. au: sauce
-aw: saw – (0)
but in UK also: or, four, sore, war

6. b: bed

7. k/c ca/o/u: cat, cot, cut
-ck: neck
k: kite/ kept
qu: quick
x: fix

8. ch: chest
-tch: clutch

9 d: dad

10. e: end
11. er: her - turn, bird, learn,

12. ee: eat - eel, even, ceiling, field, police, people, me, key, ski,
--y: jolly

13. f: fish
14. g: garden
15. h: house

16. i: ink
17. i-e: bite - might
-y: my
18. j: jam
-ge: gorge,
-dg: fidget
19. l: last
20: m: mum
21. n: nose
22. -ng: ring
23. o: on
24. o-e: mole - o-e: mole – bowl, roll, soul; old, mould, boast, most (171 – 100)
-o: no – toe, snow, dough, (106 – 59)
25. oi: oil
-oy: toy
26. oo (long): food – rude, shrewd, move, group ...(95 – 101)
27. oo (short): good – could, put
28. or: order
–aw/awe in UK
29. ou: out
-ow: now
30. p: pin

31. r: rug
32. s: sun
-ce: face

33. sh: shop
-tion: ignition

34. t: tap
-te: delicate

35. th (sharp): this
36. th (soft): thing

37. u: up – front, some, couple (308 – 68)

38. u-e: use
-ue: cue

39. v: van (0)
-ve: have (with -, regardless of need)
-v-: river (no doubling)

40. w: window

41. y: yak

42. z: zip
-se: rose

43. zh: -si-/-su-: vision, measure

44. Unstressed, unclear vowel sound (or schwa),
occurring mainly in endings and prefixes
(mother, brother, fatten - decide, divide)

Masha Bell

Houseworkprocrastinator Fri 18-Jan-13 08:14:00

Thank you mrz. So it is just a try it and see what sounds right?
They also do a bit of welsh in school and ch in welsh is very different. (kind of like a cat hissing and clearing its throat at the same time)
It amazes me how they learn to read, wish i could remember doing it myself.

mrz Fri 18-Jan-13 17:19:02

I find the idea that children (or adults) should learn every word that contains a spelling that can represent more than one sound as a whole barking masha! There are hundreds and thousands of words in English that would need to be memorised if we take your advice.

and yes masha your lists do make me scream if you are going to post things at least get them right! [wishes MN had an appropriate emoticon ]

Mashabell Fri 18-Jan-13 19:09:41

The core English word stock consists of no more than 7,000 words, and all fluent adult readers end up being able to read them as sight words, but only 2,039 of them contain spellings with more than one sound. I shan't paste them all in, just the 108 among the 300 most used English words.

In the first 100 most HF words, 40 are not entirely decodable:
the - he, be, we, me, she,
was, want, all, call, said,
of, to, one, come, do, down, into, look, now,
only, other, some, two,
could, you, your,
when, what, where, which, who, why,
there, were,
right, are, have, before, more.

In next 200, 55 are clearly tricky:
another, any, many, saw, water, small, laughed,
bear, great, head, ready,
ever, never, every, eyes,
find, friends, giant, I’ll, I’m, key, live, river,
people, pulled, put, thought, through, were, work, would,
coming, everyone, gone,
most, mother, oh, once,
grow, how, know, snow, town, window,
book, food, good, room, school, soon, too, took, door,
Mr Mrs

Another 13 are slightly so (partly depending on accent):
after, asked, can’t, fast, last, plants
animals, dragon, magic,
clothes, cold, old, told

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