Blending is when you say the individual sounds and then merge them together to read the word.
Place three sound cards next to each other to make a word e.g. c a t.
Drop the beanbag onto the first sound card and make the c sound.
Drop the beanbag onto the next sound card and say a.
Drop the beanbag onto the final sound card and say t.
Model how to blend the sounds together by saying c-a-t, cat.
Invite your child to have a go at splatting the sounds with the beanbag.
Repeat using different sound cards. See the game below for some examples of words you could use.
H-o-t, Hot Potato!
Make a list of high-frequency words on the whiteboard. These cards have a coloured stripe along the bottom to show that they can be sounded out.
Set a three-minute timer.
The person holding the beanbag should sound out the first word and then blend the sounds to read the word. Then they pass the bean bag to the other player who sounds out and blends the next word.
Once you get to the bottom of the list of words start again at the top. As the children become more familiar with the words they will begin to recognise them by sight and won't need to sound them out.
Keep playing until the time runs out. The winner is the person not holding the beanbag so the quicker you can read the word the better!
Segmenting is the opposite of blending. You split the word up into individual sounds to help with spelling. This game will help children to hear the individual sounds in words.
Place 3 bowls/plates/pieces of paper on the floor.
Say a CVC word e.g. chop. A CVC word is made up of a consonant, vowel (a, e, i, o, u) and consonant sound. I have included some examples below.
Model how to sound out the word e.g. ch - o - p.
Say one of the sounds from the word and ask your child to decide if it's the first, middle or last sound. If you said ch they should drop the beanbag in the first bowl. If you said o they should drop it in the second bowl. If you said p they should drop the beanbag in the third bowl.
Repeat with different words.
Tricky Word Games
These games will help your child to read and recognise the tricky words. These words may contain a sound that hasn't been taught yet or a tricky part that breaks the rules so learning to recognise the tricky part helps children to read more fluently.
Tricky Word Toss
Spread out 5-10 tricky word flashcards on the floor.
Call out a tricky word and ask your child to toss the beanbag at the correct flashcard.
If the beanbag lands on the correct card, they get to keep it.
Repeat, swapping roles, so that your child calls out a tricky word for you.
Keep playing until all of the cards have gone. The winner is the person with the most cards.
Tin Can Alley
Make a tower using empty tin cans or paper cups.
Use the whiteboard pen to write a sound or word on each tin.
Take it in turns to throw the bean bag. Score a point for each tin that falls over.
Score an extra point for every word/sound that they can read on the tins that they knocked down.
The phonics box kit contains a beanbag and dry wipe pen:
These packs contain sound cards and tricky words: