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Phonics phases

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by sillysausage21, Nov 15, 2011.

  1. sillysausage21

    sillysausage21 New commenter

    I am new to Reception this year and we have been working hard at our phonics! We have completed phase 2 however I am concerned that I still have about half the class that are not independently blending yet. Including a handfull of chn that are struggling to recognise letters at all!
    How would you find best to manage this, would you still move on to phase 3? As I do have chn who are ready for this. Any good tips to teach blending skills?
    Thank you for any advice you can offer.
  2. choralsongster

    choralsongster New commenter

    Do you have a TA that could work with those that still need to consolidate Phase 2/initial blending, while you move those others on in Phase 3? If not, do you have another Reception class at your school? Could you sort the children by Phase rather than class?
    I would suggest to observe another teacher teaching Phonics, to help you with blending. Could the EYFS or Literacy Co-ordinator assist?
    Hope this is of some help xx
  3. MrsDetermined

    MrsDetermined New commenter

    I would be either taking a few children out during other times of the day for extra work on phase two or, depending on how many adults you have, splitting the groups for phonics. I have done groups mixed between nursery, reception and year one because the children were at such different levels.
    I have found this tricky a few times. I find that it's all so fast paced that it's very easy for range in ability to get out of hand.
    Could you repeat virtually the same phonics session for some children?

  4. When you say blending do you mean blending phonemes or graphemes> If phonemes -
    I would use additional/incidental group or whole class times to practice oral blending and segmenting - using more Phase 1 activities that need only take a couple or 5 minutes at a time.

    For the lowest achieving who may just not be ready - I would seperate my lowest 6 or so and ask a TA to take them for an additional 10 minutes per day reinforcing satpin and blending/segmenting using these letters/phonological awraeness work/treasure hunts etc Dismissing from carpet by initial name sound/segmenting syllables in names/saying slowly to really get them to focus on sounds in words

    If graphemes - again I would ensure oral blending/segmenting is secure then guided work using sound buttons/magnetic letters etc to practice
    There are probably loads of other ideas and methds too though and am sure others will have better ways xxx

  5. You can cover phase 2 within your revist and review whilst moving onto phase 3. Those poorer children can still gain from blending new sounds. The skill of blending is probably the main problem. You will be doing this no matter what sounds you are working on. Also if they are there for the introduction of the new sound then they may just remember it later on. Pre-teaching is a good idea. If those poorer children can have a 10 minutes session with a TA the day before the introduction of a new sound then this can give them a boost during your teaching and put them one step ahead of the other children.
  6. Make sure that you set up learning opportunities so that every child gets to practise the focus letter/s-sound correspondence and the three core skills of blending cumulative words, handwriting whilst saying the sound, and spelling-with-editing routinely.
    Group games and dashing around the classroom is not core enough.
    If necessary, slow down the overall pace of introduction and teach 'incidental phonics' to those who need extra.
    Make sure that you have an alphabetic code chart in your classroom to cater for all the adults' subject knowledge and so children can start to assimilate the rationale of sounds to graphemes. You can print one off from www.phonicsinternational.com .
    Carry on with your next sets of letter/s-sound correspondences and don't preclude any of the children from your teacher-led or pupil-practise sessions.
    When children are little, they need time to assimilate, adjust and absorb. These are my latest buzz words because they seem to describe the processes of getting used to the phonics teaching and learning routines - and the rationale and learning to automaticity.
  7. sillysausage21

    sillysausage21 New commenter

    Thank you for your advice. We have assessed all the class this week so I feel secure in what each child needs to do next. I have 15 who are currently taking home Floppy's phonics books and are able to blend independently. 10 who are still working on the skills of blending, so I guess it does make sense to carry on into phase 3 but focus on blending these. My other 5 are still struggling to recognise satpin, so I think I will use Debbie's sound sheets to go back to the beginning with them. Hopefuly this will have some effect!

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