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Developing a love for stories and a love for reading: EYC Phonics Showcase

09 April 2014

Becoming a reader and developing a love for stories is a treasured gift we can pass onto our children.

Early Years Cubs children taking part in a phonics lesson as part of our recent Phonics showcase.

Recently Neil Griffiths, the children’s author, visited our school and he left three valuable tips for parents to help develop their children’s love of stories and a love of reading.

Firstly, parents need to love reading themselves, and provide a good reading environment at home. Children must see adults reading for pleasure because imitation is so powerful. 

Secondly, they need to be great sharers of books and keep reading to their children or reading together with the children every day. Research evidence shows us that reading aloud to children is the single most important activity for creating motivated readers.

Thirdly, parents need to help their children discover what they love about reading and let their children choose their own books. Children find their own passions and parents can then feed that passion. If they find books their children love to read, they will see the children become good readers.

Here at BISS Puxi we value that young children learn a great deal from other people – especially their parents and carers. Singing and saying rhymes, making and listening to music, listening and talking to your child, painting and pretend play are all valuable activities that will help your child to develop reading skills.

One of our approaches to the teaching of reading is Phonics; it is a way of teaching reading where your child is taught to read letters or groups of letters by saying the sound(s) they represent. Children can then start to read words by blending the sounds together to make a word.

To help parents understand our approach we run a Phonics Showcase twice a year for parents of our students in Early Years Cubs. Our Phonics Showcase gives parents the opportunity to see how we teach phonics to our youngest children. We aim to not only share with you how we teach phonics but also share ideas with parents on how to support these skills at home.

During these showcases we demonstrate to parents the different aspects of teaching phonics and how children develop their phonetic knowledge. There are 7 aspects we focus on in the first phase; activities are arranged under the following seven aspects:

  • Aspect 1: General sound discrimination – environmental sounds
  • Aspect 2: General sound discrimination – instrumental sounds
  • Aspect 3: General sound discrimination – body percussion
  • Aspect 4: Rhythm and rhyme
  • Aspect 5: Alliteration
  • Aspect 6: Voice sounds
  • Aspect 7: Oral blending and segmenting

These showcases give parents a chance to see first-hand the diverse range of activities we use to support the children’s phonic knowledge and understanding.

Often parents are anxious about their children learning ‘to read’ but the showcase allows parents to see how much fun it can be for the children and how we make sure that the children have experienced lots of opportunities to develop their speaking and listening skills and explore storytelling, songs and rhymes so they are ready and eager to begin on their journey of becoming readers.

We hope you can join us for one of our showcases in the future. 

For further information and tips about learning phonics we have compiled a list of useful websites you can visit:

www.foundtationyears.org.uk

www.phoincbooks.wordpress.com

www.phonicsplay.co.uk

www.letters-and-sounds.com

- Ruth Hanson, Head of Early Years Cubs