Pre-Prep Teach-Ins: Phonics

This term, Teach-Ins have been running in Pre-Prep, offering parents and opportunity to get behind the scenes of teaching and learning processes at Marlborough House. 

This week saw a Phonics Teach-In for parents take place and we thought we would 'phill' you in on it.  

Phonics is a method for teaching reading and writing by developing learners' phonemic awareness - the ability to hear, identify, and manipulate phonemes - in order to teach the correspondence between these sounds and the spelling patterns (graphemes) that represent them. Our fabulous Pre-Preppers make it look easy, but phonics is a tricky business. Take the sound ay for example.  In different words the sound might be represented by any of these graphemes.

Acorn   They   Break   Straight   Play   Pale   Eight   Snail   Veil 
So, back at the teach in we whipped through some sound cards, deciphered the word GHOTI which is 'fish' for the uninitiated:

Enough (gh sound = f), Women (o sound = i) and Station (and ti sound = sh) = f-i-sh)

and demonstrated some great ‘have a go‘ attitudes as we tried to write phonetically plausible, but incorrectly spelt, words with our non-dominant hands - all in an attempt to see life from a young child’s perspective as they begin their reading journey. I think we all felt reassured not just by how thoroughly the reading process is taught here in Pre-Prep, but also how fun it is and how brilliant our children are.  
Something to think on:

Are reluctant readers born or made?

And is there any greater gift than the gift of reading? (If you ask around you run the risk of getting Xbox as your answer….) 

Mrs Steph Willet