Phase One: Oral blending and segmenting
Purpose: To develop oral blending skills, where they merge the sounds together to make a word. During phase one, this is done by listening to the sounds rather than looking at letters and reading words.
40-60 months: Can segment the sounds in simple words and blend them together.
It is important to give children plenty of opportunities to listen to adults modelling oral blending before they are introduced to what sounds look like on paper. Adults should model how to break a word into it's individual sounds (not letters) e.g. toes would be broken up into t-oe-s not t-o-e-s. It is important to then immediately blend the sounds together rather than leaving a pause and asking them what the word might be. It is also important to sound out the last word in the sentence so that children become used to the routine and as they gain confidence they will begin to say the blended word before the adult.
'Simon Says' is a fun game that helps to develop oral blending skills. In this version the adult calling out the instructions should orally blend the last word then repeat it as a whole word straight after e.g. Touch your t-oe-s, toes.
Ask your child to listen carefully to the instructions. If Simon says to do something they have to do it as quickly as possible, but if Simon doesn't they shouldn't do it!
I have uploaded an IGTV video that your child can watch and play along with me.
If you want to have a go at playing at home, here are some ideas for instructions:
Lift your ar-m-s, arms.
Bend and touch your kn-ee-s, knees.
Touch your h-ea-d, head.
Stand on one f-oo-t, foot.
Touch your t-oe-s, toes.