The 4th Component of Teaching Reading: Phonics

Phonics is probably a component you are most familiar with!

Phonics is being able to break words apart into sound chunks as you read and then to put those sounds together to be able to read and say the word.

alphabet-close-up-communication-278887

I loved teaching phonics! I loved being able to break a word apart and watch the kids read a word by the sounds and then recode the word! There are MANY ways to teach phonics to children.

Here are my favorite three:

The following three phonic teaching strategies brought me the most success to the most amount of students!

  1. Sound by sound blending: I like to scaffold how I teach phonics. At the beginning of the year I teach sound by sound, meaning I write a word on the board and point to each sound and receive a choral response for each sound. That way I listen as my class says every sound and I am able to hear for any errors.
  2. Sound/spelling pattern only: Once they become confident with sound by sound blending, I teach by just pointing to the sound/spelling pattern in the word. So if the word was “hatch” and we were focusing on the /ch/ sound, I would point only to the “tch” sound and then have them tell me that specific sound, then I would underline the word and have them think the word in their head (giving them a 3 second wait time) and then I would say, “Word!” and the class would shout out the word they read. Once they master that I move forward just a tiny bit. I teach by just pointing to the sound/spelling pattern in the word. So if the word was “hatch” and we were focusing on the “ch” sound I would point only to the “tch” sound and then have them tell me that specific sound, then I would underline the word and have them think the word in their head (giving them a 3 second wait time) and then I would say, “Word!” and the class would shout out the word they read.
  3. Whole Word Blending: Eventually you can get to whole word blending where you just point to the whole word (with the underlined sound/spelling pattern) and then have your child read the whole word in their head (again with 3 second wait time), and then have them say the whole word.

Check out this video of me explaining how to teach the different ways explained above.

Reading Noodle Phonics Instruction

Any of these options are great. I recommend starting with the first (sound by sound) and if your child is sailing ahead of you then move on to the next option until you feel you are at a comfortable instructional level with your child.

I always underline the sound/spelling pattern in the words when doing phonics so their eyes are drawn towards the sound/spelling pattern in the word. So if you are working on the /ch/ sound spelled ch and -tch I would make my board look like the following:

match       hatch     much     catch    fetch   chick     chat     chill     chunk   scotch     chin

The snake eggs hatched.

The chick likes to play catch with the pig.

As you can see, all the words are written out with all the /ch/ sounds underlined so the eye is drawn towards the sound that should be focused on.

I would recommend doing 4-5 words on the teacher board, and then a sentence that uses some of the weeks sight words and the sound of the week. No need to do more than that! Remember this is supposed to be a supplement to their learning. I don’t want Reading Noodle to be a burden or overwhelming!

What questions do you have about teaching phonics?