What is Phonics?

Phonics is the connection between what we say and what we read. When your preschooler begins to understand that words are made up of letters and each letter has a different sound, she is on the road to becoming a fluent reader.

Phonetic success occurs as your child recognizes the individual letters, by sight, and learns to sound them out, one by one, while reading. If she comes across a new word, this will help her to decode the word by segmentation or blending.

Segmentation is the act of breaking the word into smaller chunks and sounding out each chunk. Then putting all of the chunks together to form the word as in seg - men - ta - tion.

Blending is the process of taking consonants and vowels and putting them together to form words as in ba + t. Blending is done most effectively through the clever use of ryhmes.

Learning to read is a multi-step process and different children will learn at different paces. Phonics is only 1 piece of the big picture. Fortunately, there are numerous games, websites, learning programs, and curriculums to aid in the process.

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