Approaches to Teaching Reading

How to use decodable books

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How to use decodable books Decodable books are controlled texts that beginner readers can read independently once they have been taught the spellings in the text.  Children learning to read with phonics benefit from reading decodable texts because they allow […]

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Comprehension is only as good as one’s vocabulary


Comprehension is only as good as one’s vocabulary. So, is there any point in comprehension exercises? Should we be focusing on building meaningful vocabulary? Read this thought-provoking blog by Solomon Kingsworth.

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Using morphology to teach word structure.

Amber Guardians, Workbook, books 1-10

Do you have children who spell the word ‘jumped’ – like this: ‘jumpt’ and ‘wanted’ like this: ‘wantid’? This is because they are listening to the sound/s at the end of the word. This is because we tell them to […]

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300 High Frequency Word Phonic Chart

Do your children forget spellings from one week to the next? Many teachers issue spelling lists each week only to find that a week or two down the road the children have already forgotten them. At Phonic Books we believe […]

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What is the ‘Matthew effect’ when it comes to reading instruction?

What is ‘The Matthew effect’ when it comes to reading instruction? This idea (mooted by Keith Stanovich) is that children who learn to read in the first three years of their education become fluent readers. They read more, learn more […]

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‘Sound Snap’ – a fun way to teach ‘precise pronunciation’

I have just started to teach a struggling reader  in Year 1.  The first thing I observed from my assessment was that she did not use ‘pure phonic sounds’, also known as ‘precise pronunciation’.  Many of the consonants were pronounced […]

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Should we label deprived children as less able?

Is it dangerous to assume that a child who has not had parental input is less able?  Are we setting low expectations from the very beginning? Quirky Teacher presents some important arguments about making assumptions about pupil ability in Early […]

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What is Balanced Literacy?

When asked how they teach reading, many teachers pride themselves that they are teaching ‘balanced literacy’ in their classroom.  This idea seems to imply that they are covering all the approaches their pupils may need to learn to read.  But […]

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Should ‘alien words’ be part of the Year 1 Phonics Check?

It is that time of year again and the Year 1 Phonics Check is looming.  It will take place this year during the week commencing June 12th. There had been a lot of criticism about the check in general but […]

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How to teach high-frequency words

High-frequency words are common words in our language. Many teachers believe that it is useful for children to learn to read and spell these words as soon as possible. The problem is that many of these words have complex spellings. […]

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