or - it's torn!

Phase Three: or

The activities and games in this blog post can be adapted and used with any sound that your child is learning. Phase 3 sounds and words can be found on the sounds page.


Use an invisible ink pen to write some tricky words on a piece of paper and get your child to look for them using the torch in the lid. These pens are available in my Amazon shop. This is an affiliate link, which means you don't pay an extra but Amazon give me a few pennies. Alternatively, you could write on black paper using a pencil and shine a torch on it to make it show up or hide the words around the room, close the curtains and get your child to search for them using a torch. Encourage them to read the word when they have found it. ⁣

Introduce the or sound. Tell your child that o and r work together to make or. Sound out torch (t - or - ch) and see if they can hear the or sound in the word. ⁣


Cut out some coins and write a mixture of real words and fake words on the coins as shown in the picture below.

Ask you child to sound out and blend to read the words. They should sort (s-or-t) the words into real words which are treasure and nonsense words which are rubbish. We teach children to read nonsense words because it allows them to develop their phonics skills with unfamiliar words which means they have to use phonics as the prime approach.

For a no-prep version of this game, head to the Phonics Play website to choose Buried Treasure.


Write some words containing the or sound then tear them up. Make sure that the o and r are on the same piece of paper because 'or' is a digraph, where the two letters work together to make one sound. Tell your child the word that has been t-or-n, torn. They should say the whole word, sound it out then put the pieces back together in the correct order to spell the word. Repeat with different words.

Phase 3 words:⁣ fork⁣ (f-or-k), cork (c-or-k)⁣, cord (c-or-d)⁣, sort (s-or-t)⁣, born (b-or-n)⁣, worn⁣ (w-or-n), fort⁣ (f-or-t), torn⁣ (t-or-n).

Phase 4 words:⁣ sport (s-p-or-t), storm (s-t-or-m), stork (s-t-or-k), scorn (s-c-or-n)


If you have an invisible ink pen encourage your child to have go at writing words containing the ‘or’ sound. Say a word from the list below and encourage them to sound it out.

You could also write words containing the 'or' sound for your child to find and read.

If you have a go at this activity and share any photos on social media I would love to see them. Please tag @miniwritersclub and use #miniwritersclub and let me know how you get on.


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