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Letters And Sounds Phonics...


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Hello! I was just wondering if anybody has got to Phase 3 of Letters and Sounds yet? I've started to teach the digraphs ai, ee etc. Last year I followed the order of letters and sounds to a t but this year i'm thinking of teaching the alternatives alongside the initial digraphs that they say to introduce, such as ai, ay and a-e together. I know this isn't what Letters and Sounds recommends. What do people think? Has anyone else done this?

Thanks in advance! :o

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Are you in Reception or Year 1?

 

We have just finished Phase 2 in reception and are doing a week of revision. We followed the Letter and Sounds order last year and it worked really well. It gave the children an opportunity to spell words they would need (not necessarily correctly, but phonically plausible). During reading and identifying high frequency words the children did pick up on the -ay at the end of words -day, play, but I didn't specifically teach them. I would wonder if they'd get confused if you tried to teach all the alternative long vowel spellings - the alternative spelling are in Phase 5 and a gib part of Year 1's phonic work. But if you're in Y1 you maybe should be doing it.

 

My personal thoughts only,

Harricroft xxxx

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Are you in Reception or Year 1?

 

We have just finished Phase 2 in reception and are doing a week of revision. We followed the Letter and Sounds order last year and it worked really well. It gave the children an opportunity to spell words they would need (not necessarily correctly, but phonically plausible). During reading and identifying high frequency words the children did pick up on the -ay at the end of words -day, play, but I didn't specifically teach them. I would wonder if they'd get confused if you tried to teach all the alternative long vowel spellings - the alternative spelling are in Phase 5 and a gib part of Year 1's phonic work. But if you're in Y1 you maybe should be doing it.

 

My personal thoughts only,

Harricroft xxxx

 

Thank you Harricroft, I am in Reception. Yes I did question that they might get confused but then a 'comment' from the Year 1 teacher this year, about my children from last year, wanting to make phonetic attempts at words instead of learning the correct spellings left me wandering if i should be trying to give them the knowledge to apply the correct digraphs. As i know ay etc is taught in Phase 5.

Maybe i should not let 'comments' get to me ha! Would still be keen to hear if anyone else has tried this. I do love Letters and Sounds though, my children have developed their reading and writing skills so quickly.

:o xx

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Mine will come to the end of phase 2 by Christmas and we will begin phase 3 in the New Year. Last year I did it exactly as it says to do and it works perfectly. However, this year my current class are a bit younger cohort and a lot less able. Therefore we already finished phase 2 and I chose to start that over again focusing mainly on the writing aspects as mine seem unable to grasp the writing part of it.

 

I love letters and sounds. I think it is amazing and I would just do Phase 3 as it says, but that's my personal opinion only.

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We have finished phase 2 and the first 2 weeks of phase 3... then did a week of conolidation before introducing the diagraphs- we are only doing one diagraph a week though so they can really grasp it and use it... found last year children not really using them well and confussing them trying to so them all in one week.

 

We have done very little writing with our reception children, working on gross motor, will focus more on writing after christmas.

 

L

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I have moved onto Phase 3 also with Reception. I have changed the Phase 3 planning so that after learning all the initial letters, the children then go onto learning the intial blends before doing the vowel diagraphs. I found last year that the children struggled with intial belnds, both with reading and writing, and so thats way I added them in.

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The idea with Letter & Sounds (and other synthetic phonics programmes) is that you don't teach blends separately you teach them as part of the daily process of reading. Whatever you find works best for your children rather than worrying too much about it.

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The key thing is whole school fidelity to the chosen rogramme - if you start chopping and changing then you lose that process and I believe the impact of any programme. In letters and sounds the children are expected to have 1 grapheme for all the phonemes they need by the time they get to yr 1 so your year 1 teacher clearly doesn't understand the letters and sounds expectations and needs some training!! They're doing exactly what they should be doing within L+S and within the EYFSP.

 

Cx

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In letters and sounds the children are expected to have 1 grapheme for all the phonemes they need by the time they get to yr 1

Cx

 

This isn't quite true as three graphemes are taught in the second set of phonemes to represent the /k/ sound (/c//k//ck/) for example. The Letters & Sounds Phases are only for guidance and you will find some children are capable of working at phase 5 and 6 in reception. I find children have more difficulty with graphemes and diagraphs that can represent more than one phoneme /oo//oo/ /th//th/ than with alternative spellings.

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The idea with Letter & Sounds (and other synthetic phonics programmes) is that you don't teach blends separately you teach them as part of the daily process of reading. Whatever you find works best for your children rather than worrying too much about it.

 

I would agree with that. Children who are taught blends tend to get mixed up with segmenting. They hear the 'bl' or the 'cr' etc and don't know how to write it.

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What an interesting thread - and obviously one which is raising quite passionate replies.

 

queline - If you're thinking of introducing alternative spelling because of a comment from Y1 teacher I'd say you know your class - and what they're capable of better than any one. I'm sure Phase 5 and alternative long vowel spellings is Year 1 work, so you would effectively be trying to cover part of this work - if you have some gifted/able children it might work, but my guessing is they would be in the minority. You shouldn't feel pressurised into doing more than can be expected of you/your cohort.

 

marsmontessori - I'm finding the writing is more problematical too. But, though some of them can't manage the physical writing, they can make words using magnetic letters, so I'm planning a week of revision and work on extra writing/using letter cards, but if I feel they're confident in blending and segmenting and reading words and captions, then I'm going to move onto Phase 3 as I could be waiting forever and then holding them back. Writing will come - I hope!!!

 

As far as blends are concerned - ummmmm! I fully understand that L&S wants children to be able to blend and segment each individual phoneme, and we did do this last year. But I still feel there is a place for teaching some blends as a whole (possibly after demonstrating segmenting into individual phonemes) - and before anyone throws their arms up in horror - I teach in the North West and found that some of the blends just aren't pronounced here - can't for the life of me think which were the problems last year, but this is the conclusion I came to - and I would argue it as I believe it's right for my cohort.

 

Just to add - I and my class LOVE Letters and Sounds - how often do we say that about government initiatives! Just had parents' evening and the one thing that got a resounding positive reaction - 'we can't believe how much they've learnt', 'we can't go shopping without them sounding out the signs', 'he drives me mad - guess what I've got - it's a d, d, d,'

 

Harricroft :o

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Hi there!

 

I taught my class the ai and ay last year because they were spelling words like dai so I didn't want to encourage bad habits. They coped well with it and I didn't have particularly able gifted and talented children. We learned briefly about split digraph a-e when we came across words like same during reading etc. Y1 Phase 5 consolidates this. See how it goes...

 

Good luck!!!

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I teach in the North West and found that some of the blends just aren't pronounced here - can't for the life of me think which were the problems last year, but this is the conclusion I came to - and I would argue it as I believe it's right for my cohort.

Harricroft :o

 

Had to smile at that one, Harricroft - /ng/ as one sound? Not in Lancashire! The other ones that we causes us some fun is the alternative pronunciation for /a/ - as in grass - sounds the same as the /a/ in cat to us - and the /u/ as in put. xD

 

One thing I did use to find higher up school, before people had such an awareness of correct pronunciation without the "schwa-ing", was that some children would over segment to spell, eg. for the word "pray" they would write "peray" etc. or "terain" for train. For those children that sometimes just can't help that schwa at the end of the word, no matter how hard we try in school (and there are some, in our case often due to well-meaning grannies taking on the role of home support), perhaps there is an argument for teaching those initial blends. Have to say I love L & S too, though!

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Hi there!

 

I taught my class the ai and ay last year because they were spelling words like dai so I didn't want to encourage bad habits. They coped well with it and I didn't have particularly able gifted and talented children. We learned briefly about split digraph a-e when we came across words like same during reading etc. Y1 Phase 5 consolidates this. See how it goes...

 

Good luck!!!

 

Thank you for all your replies! I think I may try what you have done moo... Watch this space! xx

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Had to smile at that one, Harricroft - /ng/ as one sound? Not in Lancashire! The other ones that we causes us some fun is the alternative pronunciation for /a/ - as in grass - sounds the same as the /a/ in cat to us - and the /u/ as in put. :o

 

looking through Year 1 books tonight - just found the one that we can't do - st - North West sd.

sdand, sdool, Has to be taught!!!

 

tracylu - do you have the Jolly Phonics jingles CD - the snake is in the grass? It kills me how POSH my class sound when singing ' the snake is in the grARSE'

 

Sorry for anyone who isn't from around here!!!!

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Hello,

I went on a Jolly Phonics course in May which covered letters and sounds too, was extremely useful. They said to introduce the basic code first - one grapheme at a time. The children then learn the advanced code in Year 1 and Year 2. So I'm teaching ai, ee, igh and oa this week. I think it'd be too much otherwise, well it would be for my lot anyway!

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I did some training with Sue Lloyd (Jolly Phonics) years and years ago and she advocated teaching the alternatives in reception. Introducing the sound using one written form then once that is consolidated teaching alternatives. The alternatives are all included in the Jolly Phonics Handbook which is intended for reception (Jolly Grammar for KS1).

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Letters & Sounds says reception is to the end of phase 4 so once again no compatibility between programmes

 

checked yesterday at a CLLD regional meeting and the expected phase for Yr R is phase 3+ which I think clarifies it.

Cx

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checked yesterday at a CLLD regional meeting and the expected phase for Yr R is phase 3+ which I think clarifies it.

Cx

 

Catma if you check out the Letters and Sounds materials they clearly explain that Phases 2,3 & 4 are taught in reception (phase 2 for 6 weeks phase 3 12 weeks and phase 4 a further 6 weeks) and phase 5 in Year 1 and phase 6 in year 2 obviously allowing for ability there will be some children working who may not complete phases 2-4 in reception or may progress into phase 5

<H3><H3><H3>Phase Two

las_phase2.jpgDevelops children's knowledge of grapheme-phoneme correspondence (GPC), their skills of blending and segmenting with letters and recognition of high frequency words containing GPCs not taught at that phase.

 

Duration: up to six weeks. Develops children's knowledge of 19 letters of the alphabet with one sound for each. Teaches and practises the skills of blending separate sounds together into whole words for reading and segmenting whole words into separate sounds for spelling.

 

Phase Three</H3>las_phase3.jpgDevelops children's knowledge of grapheme-phoneme correspondence (GPC), their skills of blending and segmenting with letters and recognition of high frequency words containing GPCs not taught at that phase.

 

Duration: up to 12 weeks. Develops children's knowledge of the seven remaining letters of the alphabet and graphemes to cover most of the phonemes represented by more than one letter. Teaches and practises the skills of blending and segmenting sounds represented by single letters and graphemes of more than one letter.

 

Phase Four</H3>las_phase4.jpgDevelops children's knowledge of grapheme-phoneme correspondence (GPC), their skills of blending and segmenting with letters and recognition of high frequency words containing GPCs not taught at that phase.

 

Duration: four to six weeks. There are no new GPCs to be learnt in this phase. Develops children's knowledge and skills of blending and segmenting words with adjacent consonants.

 

Phase Five</H3>las_phase5.jpgDevelops children's knowledge of grapheme-phoneme correspondence (GPC), their skills of blending and segmenting with letters and recognition of high frequency words containing GPCs not taught at that phase.

 

Duration: throughout Year 1. Children learn more graphemes for the 40+ phonemes taught in Phases Two and Three and more ways of pronouncing graphemes introduced in Phases Two and Three. Teaches and practises the skills of blending and segmenting using all GPCs taught.

 

 

 

Phase Six

las_phase6.jpgDevelops children's knowledge of grapheme-phoneme correspondence (GPC), their skills of blending and segmenting with letters and recognition of high frequency words containing GPCs not taught at that phase.

 

Duration: throughout Year 2 and beyond. Increases fluency of the blending of words encountered for the first time in reading and accuracy of spelling choices.

Edited by Marion
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I do look in the L+S doc frequentlyand found the tone of that post unnecessarily patronising.

 

All I'm saying is that children are expected to be secure at phase 3 as a minimum outcome - hence phase 3 plus as the nationally expected outcome. It takes into account all the different entry points across the country I suppose and children's previous experiences. Therefore If they are phase 3 secure at the end of YrR then they would be working in phase 4 as they move to yr 1 and phase 4 acts as that transitional bridge.

 

I would like to feel that I can make posts without then feeling under attack for my opinion.

 

 

Cx

Edited by catma
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I am sorry you feel under attack and patronised that wasn't my intention but it does seem odd to me that the DCSF should publish a document stating one thing while another department states another. Apparently not all LAs are being told the same story catma

Edited by Marion
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