Sounding Out – A Tip Worth Trying

13 Nov

Do your children struggle with sounding out as much as mine?

Tell me I’m not the only one.

Just this term I’ve discovered a technique that has totally turned around Brayden’s sounding out.

We’ve stopped sounding out from the front of the word and jump straight to the vowel.

Skeptical?  Too radical for you?  Might be worth a try though.

We cover the front (and the back if there are additional consonants) and start with the vowel and the consonant after it.

So for the word, “tent” we’d cover the initial “t” and ending “t” leaving only the “en” to start with.

IMG_6513 (Small)

So my reader would read, “en” then “ten” removing his fingers as he goes.

IMG_6514 (Small)

Once he’s read “ten” he can usually just slide the final consonant onto the end without even saying the word again.

There seems to be something easier about starting with the vowel sound and going back to add the initial sound.

Of course you’d have to tweak the technique for multi-syllablic words and vowel combinations but it shouldn’t be too hard and perhaps your little reader won’t need the same sort of assistance once they are off and reading.

IMG_6516 (Small)

We started this technique by reading lists of words with the same endings

eg.    en







so that he had lots of practise with the change of technique.  Once he gained enough confidence with this we moved back to his readers and started again.

You can’t even imagine how this simple technique has changed Brayden’s reading.  He’s been slogging through basic CVC words all year but with this slight change he’s suddenly jumped ahead several levels in only a couple of weeks.

Voila!   Real success …finally!!!  He’ll be reading chapter books before the end of next year.


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Posted by on November 13, 2011 in Language


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