Possum started her first year of school this year, known as prep in Victoria. I always find it amazing just how much they learn in their first year of school. The school that she attends uses a combination of phonics and whole of language approach to literacy. If you are not familiar with these terms Succeed To Read gives a succinct explanation of both.
I will avoid entering the phonics vs whole of language debate though. Possum is at a school where they do both and I have supported her learning by incorporating both styles of activities into our play.
To support the phonic component of her learning, I came up with a couple of activities which we have played in Terms 1 and 2.
Phonic Scavenger Hunt
Learning Aim: To practice phonic sound recognition of letters of the alphabet.
Preparation Task: Together we drew up on the computer and then printed out a table of the alphabet. We stuck this to some cardboard, waited for it to dry and then Possum cut out all the letters into cards. I have included ours below as an example.
Activity: Go through each letter of the alphabet, discuss the phonic sound it makes, then the child finds an object in the house that starts with that sound.
How many letters you do at a time would depend on the stage of the child. In the photos we did the entire alphabet, as this was the stage that she was at. I would recommend beginning with three or four at a time, so that they can master them and feel success.
After a couple of goes with assistance completing the whole alphabet, Possum then requested that she wanted to do it all by herself and that she would show me at the end. It was very cute to watch her run around the house scavenging for the items that she was after.
Phonic I Spy
Learning Aim: To identify the letter of the alphabet with its phonic sound.
Preparation Task: Cardboard cut out alphabet as with the task above. A collection of items to play the game with.
Activity: From a collection of items, play I spy with the phonic starting sound of the items.
For example in the photo above we had a cat, a ball and an apple (yes it was half eaten!). I would choose a letter, in this case “c” and say “I spy, with my little eye, something beginning with “c”.” (phonic sound) and place the letter card in front of me. Possum would then pick up the letter card and place it next to the item that started with that sound. It would then be her turn to choose an item to spy.
Again how many items you would play with would depend on the stage of the child. We started with three items and built up to six.
Do you have any phonic activities that are suitable for beginners? If so share them in the comments. I am going to be doing a few posts on the literacy activities we have been doing home and will build up a resource list on early literacy to post at the end.