This article explains why supporting your child with phonics at home is so important and provides you with practical ways in which you can do this. Sign up for a free 9 page activity booklet with lots of variations on a popular game, which you can use to develop your child’s phonics skills at home/when out and about, with no resources and little time required.
No doubt you want your child to become a successful reader and writer and you have a key role to play in them achieving this.
Did you know that you can help your child to make an additional 4-5 months of progress in one year through providing high quality home learning? You can read more about the research here.
Phonics is currently used as the main approach to teach your child to read and write in Reception and Key Stage 1. If your child’s school has provided you with phonics activities to do with your child at home, try and use these, as they will re-inforce the knowledge and skills your child has been learning at school. This will in turn help your child to make faster progress with their reading and writing and feel more confident during lessons at school.
However, there may be a number of reasons you want/need additional phonics activities to help your child with phonics at home:
- Your child is interested/keen to practise their phonics/early reading/writing skills at home and you would like to provide them with additional engaging ways in which to do this.
- Your child struggles with phonics/early reading/writing and needs additional activities/practice to support their learning.
- You are looking for school holiday activities, which will help maintain/develop your child’s phonics knowledge and skills. Children do forget things during school holidays, particularly the long summer break, so any phonics activities you can do with them at home will help to prevent this and leave them feeling more confident in lessons when they return to school. At the end of the day, you don’t want to lose the termtime gains your child has made during the school holidays.
There are lots of online phonics activities for parents and carers to use at home with their child – some are very worthwhile and others have little educational value. Your child’s school may have provided links to some of the better ones.
Alternatively, you will find an extensive list of links to free phonics activities you can use with your child at home on my website. These are organised into the year groups and terms when they would be appropriate for a significant number of children. Most synthetic phonics programmes broadly follow the order outlined, although there are differences in the order that some graphemes/tricky words are taught, particularly in Y1.
You may be very busy with work and/or other commitments during termtime (and potentially during the school holidays too), leaving you with little time to do phonics activities with your child at home. With this in mind, I wanted to provide you with some simple phonics activities you can use in odd moments either at home or when out and about that require no resources at all. These consist of more than 8 completely different variations (focuses) on a well known game, so you can adapt the activity to meet your child’s improving phonics knowledge/skills as they move through nursery (aged 3-4), Reception, Y1 and Y2. The activities are suitable for children following any synthetic phonics programme at school (this is most schools in England).