As parents, we want our learners to succeed in reading. There are 5 specific components that, when supported, lead to proficiency in reading.  With a better understanding of these components, you can support your child in all areas of literacy and increase their chances of success.

As parents, we want our learners to succeed in reading. There are 5 specific components that, when supported, lead to proficiency in reading.  With a better understanding of these components, you can support your child in all areas of literacy and increase their chances of success.

Phonemic Awareness: The ability to hear, identify, and manipulate the individual sounds, known as phonemes, in spoken words.

For example, children who are phonemically aware can:

• Identify the beginning sound of “gateway”: /g/

• Segment the word “hat” into its 3 sounds: /h/ /a/ /t/

• Blend the sounds /d/ /o/ /g/ into the word “dog”

• Delete the last sound of “cart” and say the word “car”

A simple activity for you and your child is to say the individual phonemes in the words (robotic style) and have your child identify the word.  After some progress, you can say/write the words and have your child verbally separate the sounds (phonemes) back to you.  The list of words below are separated by phonemes.  Have some fun by identifying beginning sounds and removing/adding phonemes to create new words.

 

2 Phonemes

day = d / ay

go = g / o

in = i / n

knee = kn / ee

zoo = z / oo

up = u / up

cow = c / ow

boy = b / oy

 

3 Phonemes

bed = b / e / d

mat = m / a / t

kiss = k / i / ss

sheep = sh / ee / p

girl = g / ir / l

sock = s / o / ck

chin = ch / i / n

pail = p / ai / l

teeth = t / ee / th

 

4 Phonemes

crab = c / r / a / b

stick = s / t / i / ck

brush = b / r / u / sh

truck = t / r / u / ck

lunch = l / u / n / ch

speed = s / p / ee / d

train = t / r / ai / n

flip = f / l / i / p

flight = f / l / i / ght

class = c / l / a / ss

pant = p / a / n / t

 

2. Phonics: Correlating sounds with letters or groups of letters.

For additional skill building, use magnetic letters or a dry erase board and write a letter. Have your child say the sound that corresponds with that letter.  When possible, have a variety of symbols on the page such as a, b, c, d, f & ph.  Say the sounds that corresponds with the letter b and have your child point to the right letter.  For the “f” sound, the child should point to both f and ph.

 

3. Vocabulary: Understanding the meaning of words, their definitions and their context.

Vocabulary is the glue that holds content together, making comprehension accessible.

With both programs, learners will be able to increase the amount of words they understand and use as part of their working vocabulary. Within lessons, activities, games and eBooks, students will be provided with visual support to provide context and boost retention levels.

 

4. Fluency: Ability to read with speed, understanding and accuracy.

A variety of skills work together to build reading fluency. We understand that students need to have access to books at an appropriate reading level to improve their reading endurance that will help increase their reading fluency.

To support fluency, your child should be able to read about 80% of the words within the text.  If your child can read the words but does so at a very slow place you can do a power reading strategy.  This means you will read right along with them and skip a few words in the sentence. While skipping the words, your child should still read them and continue at their pace.  Do this for one or two paragraphs or pages to support your child in learning and maintaining a good pace for reading.

5. Reading Comprehension: Understanding the meaning of written text.

At home, use a few of the below questioning strategies while reading to increase comprehension skills.

 

Fiction

Who is the most important character?

Which character changed in the story? How did he/she change?

What is the story mostly about?

How is the setting (time and place) important to the story?

What was the most important problem in the story?

What words help you create a feeling or picture in your mind?

 

Non-fiction

What does the title tell you about this text?

Why is this topic important?

What information is provided through text features? (bold print, key words, captions, labels, etc.)

How can you easily find information within the text?

Why did the author write this text? What is the purpose?

TIP: always ask for evidence – “How do you know?”

 

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