Synthetic Phonics

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

What is ‘The Matthew effect’ when it comes to reading instruction? This idea (muted 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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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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Questions about the efficacy of phonics

If you are not convinced that phonics works for everyone or feel that you have tried it and still some of your pupils struggle – here are answers to often held views about teaching to read with synthetic phonics.  Professor Pamela […]

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It’s time all teachers had a good grasp of synthetic phonics

Five years after the introduction of synthetic phonics into classrooms, it is time that teachers made it their business to have a good understanding of synthetic phonics and what science tells us about effective ways to teach reading. Read this short […]

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Should we teach tricky words as ‘sight words’?

The new year has started and children are sent home to learn to read and spell tricky words by sight, that is by the shape of the word.  Does this make sense if they are learning to read with Synthetic […]

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Reading strategies – what not to do

Here is a list of strategies that do not help children become fluent, independent readers and spellers. http://www.dyslexics.org.uk/what_not_to_do.htm Thanks Susan Godsland of www.dyslecix.org.uk for this post.  

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Why we need to teach letter sounds first

Many children come to their first year of school knowing their letters names.  This is because nursery schools and parents teach the ABC song.   They enter Reception and the teacher introduces the letter sounds alongside the letter names.  For many this […]

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Multi-tasking makes you stupid

Here is an interesting post from Spelfabet that explain how looking for lots of reading cues distracts from decoding. Attention during learning

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