Learning to Read

How to practice reading ‘tap’ and ‘tape’

Many students struggle with split vowel spellings a-e, e-e, i-e, o-e, u-e. These are also known as ‘split digraphs’, ‘magic e’ and ‘vowel + e’. These students need extra explicit instruction and practice reading words with these split spellings. It […]

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Dictation is great activity for emerging spellers

Most teachers approach teaching in a child-centred way so dictation goes against the grain.  It may seem old-fashioned and yes, a bit dictatorial.  But actually, is it a really powerful tool which is particularly useful for struggling or emerging readers […]

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Thumbs up for READ, SOUND, WRITE, CHECK!

So, we are resuming our campaign to change the way teachers send home spelling lists every week using the LOOK, WRITE, COVER, CHECK approach.  Why doesn’t it work with so many children? Many children have a poor visual memory and […]

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READ, SOUND, WRITE, CHECK – a better way to teach spelling

This year I have a number of students in Year 5 and 6 who are fluent readers.  Their problem is spelling.  Typically they may spell a word with all the correct letters that are in the wrong order, e.g. ‘nitgh’ […]

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How to teach children about syllables

Before children can begin to read and spell multisyllabic words they need to get a feel for what a syllable is – for what a ‘mouthful of a word’ is. If they have had systematic phonics instruction they may find […]

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What is a syllable and why we should teach children about it

What is a syllable and why we should teach children about it A syllable is a part of a word that contains sounds (phonemes) of a word. It usually has a vowel in it. A syllable is also called a […]

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Cumulative teaching – how to teach children who forget

Many of my students at the Bloomfield Learning Centre have difficulty remembering the complex alternative spellings of sounds in English.  The problem is they don’t hold on to what they have learned.  The teacher may teach <ai> and the next […]

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Reading with expression can help with reading fluency

Do you have children. who. r-ea-d. l-ike. th-i-s? How can we get children to read fluently? So firstly, why do we need to read fluently? We need to read fluently because it is difficult to understand what we are reading […]

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Independent review of That Dog! series

  We have just received this independent review from Teach Primary Magazine.  The review is available online.  See link below. Phonic Books – That Dog! for catch-up readers across the school. At a glance: • Age appropriate, synthetic phonic catch-up […]

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Teaching ‘Silent’ letters

Do you teach ‘silent letters’? Read what the Literacy Blog has to say about them.   http://www.thereadingcentre.com/2011/11/26/silent-letters/

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