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Fun with Beginning Readers

March 7, 2016 No Comments

So what is the difference between phonics and phonemic awareness?

Phonemic awareness is the foundation of our written language. Beginning readers learn that each letter has a sound associated with it. By combining individual letter sounds (phonemes) children are able to hear, identify, and manipulate individual sounds in words.

For example, the word cat has three separate phonemes: /c/   /a/   /t/.   These three sounds can be rearranged to spell tac:   /t/   /a/   /c/. Children who can hear and identify these sounds are well on their way to understanding how to read words. An important difference between phonemic awareness and phonics is that phonemic awareness does not involve printed words. It is only hearing and understanding letter sounds.Phonics takes this understanding and applies it to print.

So, how do you make this difficult task fun? After all, it is summer! Well, after some careful searching, I found some ideas that I thought your kids might like:


Letters-and-sounds-fishing-game-with-ping-pong-balls This Alphabet Fishing game comes from Anna at The Imagination Tree. She took a plastic tub, added water tinted blue with food coloring, and some ping pong balls. When she said a letter sound, the children scooped out the matching ping pong ball.

Also from Anna, is this fun idea: Alphabet-beans-matching-activity Alphabet Beans Matching Game. Take a bunch of dry lima beans and write some lower case letters on them. Next write the corresponding upper case letters inside some paper baking cups. The goal is for your child to make the lower case letters with their capital letter.









tossandblend-kindergarten-slide How about creating a tossing game? Simply write some letters, blends, or digraphs with a permanent marker. Then use some buttons or checker pieces to toss into the cups. Each time a button lands in a cup, the player must come up with a word that begins with that sound.





easter egg word families


This is such a great way to put those unused plastic eggs to good use! As you rotate the one end, have your child read the new word that is created!

Thanks to Heather at Camp Slop for this idea



For more games and activities you might like this resource:

Phonemic awareness cover

Beginning readers will have fun with the variety of games and activities included in this resource. Perfect for RTI interventions, literacy centers, home schooling, and tutoring.

Here’s what you get:

* 36 Sound Sorting Cards
* 36 Picture Sound Clip-it Cards
* 16 Rhyme Time Matching Cards
* 4 Onset – Rime Flapbooks
* Find a Rhyme Game
* Syllable Sort Activity
* Recognizing Rhymes Assessment
* Phoneme Blending Assessment

These early learning activities are colorful and engaging.

CLICK HERE to get this resource.



For more ways to have fun with phonics, check out the blogs listed below.

Alison Monk

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Welcome! I'm Alison Monk, a primary teacher with a passion for creating educational materials that engage kids and teachers love! I hope this blog encourages and inspires you. I'm so glad you are here! Read More

About the Literacy Garden

My name is Alison Monk and I love helping teachers like you be successful. My passion is to support you with effective tips and engaging resources. I love children's literature, Golden Retrievers, and coffee!

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