Phonics Explained



What are the R Controlled Vowels and how do you teach them? A thorough explanation, plus ideas, resources and tips to ensure you effectively teach these sounds.

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Phonemic Awareness is the strongest predictor of reading and spelling success. The schools who achieve incredible reading results are often those that have honed their student’s phonemic awareness skills. This blog post explores what phonemic awareness is, and how it sits alongside phonics. It also provides teaching ideas to incorporate it into your lessons.


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As adults it feels like we learn to read by sight, but it’s a lot more complex than that. Guest blogger, Marnie Ginsberg, explains the most compelling and well-researched theory of how learners acquire the ability to read English words. It’s not just what we ‘see’ on the surface!

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Vowel teams are probably the most common source of reading and spelling errors as one vowel sound may be represented by as many as 6 different vowel teams. Teacher Shirley Houston breaks down the vowel teams and how to teach them!

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How pronouncing the sounds can go wrong and ideas to ensure you are teaching them correctly.


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The schwa can be a cause of confusion and frustration in spelling and reading for a student. Teacher Shirley Houston will give you a simple way to explain it and some tips for helping students to decode and encode words containing a schwa.


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When children are fluent readers, their comprehension takes off! We explain: what fluency is, why you need to be paying special attention to ‘prosody’ and how you can teach these skills. 


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