What is…a vowel digraph?

In our ‘what is…’ series we’re taking things back to basics! From phonics to decoding, blending and more, we’re going to break things down and give you our expert advice on each area, to help answer any questions you may have around teaching reading. *** A vowel digraph is a two-letter spelling that represents a […]

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The 2023 Reading Framework: An Excellent Blueprint for Supporting Struggling Older Readers

This is a guest blog written by Emily Hanson, former class teacher and freelance education copywriter. She holds a PGCE and M.Ed from the University of Cambridge, and has taught across the primary age range. Her subject specialism is literature, language and phonics. Outside of the classroom, Emily has also worked for a youth charity, […]

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Ask us anything! What are the most important elements in a phonics programme?

When we teach reading with phonics, we need to include two important elements: Introduction of the alphabetic code in small steps (these are the letter/sounds correspondences) starting with simple letter/sound correspondences and progressing to more complex. Teaching children the phonemic awareness skills that underlie reading and spelling, so that they can use the phonic knowledge […]

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What is…Phonics?

In our ‘what is…’ series we’re taking things back to basics! From phonics to decoding, blending and more, we’re going to break things down and give you our expert advice on each area, to help answer any questions you may have around teaching reading. *** When fluent readers read, the words fly off the page. […]

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“Sound it out”

Reading decodable book

What do we mean by “sound it out” and what does it entail? When a child gets stuck on a word we often remind them to “sound it out”. As fluent readers, we assume this is very straightforward. We recognise these words automatically and skip all the stages that beginner readers need to go through […]

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Pronunciation and the development of vocabulary

teaching-reading-with-Phonic-Books-catch-up-readers

We all mispronounce words from time to time, especially when they are unfamiliar to us. Speech and Language Pathologist, Miriam Fein, explores the important link between pronunciation and the development of vocabulary. Every once in a while someone starts a thread on Twitter about words that they mispronounced for a long time because they only […]

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The Love of Reading

the_love_of_reading

How important is it to cultivate the love of reading in children? Decodable books are an essential part of a structured literacy approach, but they have a specific purpose. They are decodable exercises which students can use to practise the phonics skills they have learned. They are not designed to compete with the huge variety […]

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What are decodable books?

Beginner reader using a decodable book

Although systematic, synthetic phonics teaching programmes are now a mandatory part of the UK National Curriculum for schools, one of the questions we are most frequently asked is still, ‘What are decodable books?’. Phonic Books co-founder, Tami Reis-Frankfort, provides a brief clarification of the meaning of the term, and explains why decodable books are so […]

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Teaching the Rope

Scarboroughs reading rope

Scarborough, H. S. (2001). Connecting early language and literacy to later reading (dis)abilities: Evidence, theory, and practice. In S. Neuman & D. Dickinson (Eds.), Handbook for research in early literacy (pp. 97-110). New York: Guilford Press. The Reading Rope was developed by Dr. Hollis Scarborough to provide a framework for understanding the different skills that are necessary […]

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Structured Linguistic Literacy

Dystinct magazine clair wilson

Supporting structured linguistic literacy at home with games and decodable reading books – by Clair Wilson This article was originally published in the January 2023 issue of Dystinct Magazine. Click here for free access to this issue until December 2024. Reading is one of the most important skills we want our children to learn. We […]

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