Fishing For Phonics

Keep Phonics Fun

Learning to read can be tricky. Phonics is recommended as the first strategy that children should be taught in helping them to read and write.
It helps children hear, identify and use different sounds that distinguish one word from another in the English language.

Once a child understands what sound is linked to a letter they can then begin to blend them together in order to read or spell a word.

With a little creativity teaching and learning phonics can be fun, by keeping the whole process fun it will help the child to become engaged more. Phonics can be educational and fun.

There are lots of ways to keep phonics fun and different including

  • Hunting for letters
  • Using magnetic letters to form words
  • Using bricks to make words
  • Bury letters or items in sand or rice
  • Use a paintbrush and water outside on the pavement to write down letters and words
  • Unlocking phonics sounds with a padlock and key
  • Matching the beginning sounds to items
  • Silly soup
  • Sorting baskets – each basket represents a sound. Place objects into the correct basket

What is Fishing for Phonics?

Fishing for phonics can be done in many ways:

You can hide items or letters in a water tray and children can use a net to fish them out.

Print out letters or pictures and place a paperclip on them. The child can use a piece of string with a magnet attached to the end.

Or you can use the Fishing Game

Fishing for Phonics

Place the sounds or words that the child is working on on the underneath of a fish.

Phonics on fish

And just as you would play the game normally, using a rod, catch the fish. When you catch a fish the child has to say the word or sound that they have caught. If they get it wrong, correct them and then place it back in the game to be caught again.

Catching fish to say the sound or word

If they are catching words, then ask the child to put the word into a sentence. This helps them to retain the information of what they have learnt.

This game also teaches children about turn taking and helps to develop their fine motor skills.

This game can be differentiated depending on what the learning objective is. It can also be used to teach number bonds or times tables.

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Unlocking phonic sounds with a padlock and key

My little one is 4 years old and currently learning his phonic sounds, he is doing really well and is beginning to master his individual sounds and blending them together to read simple cvc, cvcvv words. We are now moving on to learning digraphs and vowel digraphs, which are two letters that make one sound, eg. sh, ch, th, ph, ai, ow, ee.

Making a game out learning is fun and can really engage the child .

We have made  a simple little game up, using padlocks and keys.

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Place a picture on the padlock and then add the beginning sound onto the key. So it could be a picture of an ant and then add the initial sound on the key, which would be a. As my child is learning jolly phonics in school I used the pictures from the jolly phonics sound card. This way they can not only recognise the sound but also the picture. Using name tags I wrote the sound on and attached it to the key. The pictures need to be fairly small to fit onto the padlocks.

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This game is fun to play and easy to make. Children can play for hours unlocking the padlock, not only learning and recognising sounds but also working on their fine motor skills.

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You can use the padlock idea for number bonds, equations and words.

Hope you have found this post helpful 🙂

 

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Word building with Bricks, learning to read

Learning to read can be tricky, but making it fun can help children learn.

Phonics involves children learning the sounds of the letters and not just the name, how to segment and blend them together to make words, for example s – a – t blended together reads sat. Phonics consists of identifying sounds that are in spoken words and recognising the common spelling of each phoneme (the smallest unit of sound) Tricky isn’t it! And that is just the beginning of learning Phonics.

Learning the initial sounds and building cv, cvc words together is the beginning of learning to read.

I made up our own little word building game using different length duplo bricks.

You will need:

  • Duplo bricks, 2,4 and 6 pronged long
  • A marker pen
  • Sticky labels preferably white
  • Scissors

Use the smaller bricks for the individual sounds and the bigger bricks for the words that you want your child to learn to read and write. Following the Letters and Sounds phases, It’s always good to start with the sounds s,a,t,i,p,n and cv (consonant and vowel) words first. It will help the child to blend smaller words and once they have the hang of it add-on another letter.

Cut the sticky label to the size of the brick. Write on the individual sounds to the words that you want them to build and then on the longer bricks write down the words.

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As your child is building the word get them to sound out the letter, once they have recognised them and found the sounds that make up the word they then build the word. When the word is built they can then try to blend the sounds together and read out the word

DSC_2824_optGet your child to point to each sound when reading

DSC_2826_optOnce your child has mastered the cv words you can then go onto cvc words, like sat, pin, pat and sit. You can then add in the digraph (2 letters that make 1 sound), trigraph (3 letters that make 1 sound) and blends

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This is a fun activity that encourages children fine motor skills as well as letter recognition and blending words.

Thank you for reading 🙂

 

 

 

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Sensory Ziplock Bags

These sensory Ziplock bags are perfect for young children who are learning to write, they are easy to make and are fun to use. There are so many different types of sensory bags to make, you can add items to them such as letters and numbers for recognition, objects for counting or specific letters to make a sound bag.

We went for the plain option as Oliver is just learning his letter formations.

You will need:

  • Strong see through plastic ziplock bags (I used Tesco own brand)
  • Tub of hair gel (we used see through cheap hair gel, bought from the chemist)
  • Food dye
  • Glitter
  • Selotape to seal the bag

Empty half of the tub of gel into the bag, add in some food dye (i used the gel food colouring that comes in a tube) and the glitter. Close the bag up and squidge the mixture around with your fingers, the dye will eventually mix in and you will have an even glittery colour.
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If you feel that there is too much in the bag remove it now before you seal it with the selotape. Remove any air that is the the bag slowly trying not to lose any of the gel out of the bag. Once you are happy with the sensory bag, fold over the top and seal it with selotape.

Now they are ready to use
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You could also add objects into then before you seal the bags up eg: alphabet, numbers, fish, stars or objects that begin with a peticular sound for a sounds bag.

Not only has my youngest boy enjoyed doing his letters and shapes in the gel bag but my other two children who are aged 7 and 12 have equally enjoyed playing with it too.

Please be careful and use strong ziplock bags and also keep any child using it under supervision.

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Phonic Sounds Trees

Joseph has been doing really well with his spellings at home but when it comes to doing his spellings in school he doesn’t seem to be getting them correct. I am doing my utmost to support him more at home but I want to try to make it fun for him as I don’t to put too much pressure on him to learn.

We made some trees by cutting out the shape of a tree out of some card.

Then with another piece of coloured card I wrote out the sound that he is learning in school and words that had the phonics sound in them.

I stuck on the sound in the middle of the tree. We did ‘ai’ and ‘ie’ as he seems to be getting them mixed up.

I cut out all of the words and placed them one at a time in front of him. I asked him to read them by sounding out the letters and blending them all together, once he said the word Joseph then had to choose which tree to put the word on.

We used Blu tack on the back of the words that way you can use the trees again for other sounds.

Once all of the words were on the trees we went through them together and then I asked him if he could think of any other words with the sounds in them.

Joseph really enjoyed this sounds activity and was really pleased with him self for getting them all correct. He told me that it was fun and that he wants to do it again (brilliant, just what I was hoping his reaction would be)

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A simple and easy fun activity which doesn’t take long to set up and support your child with their phonics and sounds to help them read and spell. You can re-use the trees by changing the phonic sounds and words.

Thank you for reading 🙂

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