Starting in Early Years, children are taught phonics; the journey of learning to read, write and spell. These vital skills are the beginning of a lifelong literacy journey.
At first, the adult will show the children how this is done. The separate sounds (phonemes) are clearly spoken aloud, in order, fairly quickly and are then merged together into the whole word. For example:
m -a -n = man
The merging together of the sounds is called blending. Initially, children may not be able to merge the sounds together independently and will need frequent practise which is highly beneficial.
This is the opposite to oral blending. Here, children hear the whole word before it is then broken into separate sounds (phonemes). For example:
dog = d-o-g
This skill is called segmenting and is vital in order for children be able to spell. Initially, children might only be able to hear the initial sound and will need frequent practise.
Ways You Can Support Your Child at Home
Share a range of rhymes.
Practise oral blending in and around the home. You can do this by talking in the following way:
Initially, the children will just listen and then with time, they will be able to join in, hearing the words the sounds create.