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What is blending?

Phonics is the prime approach for teaching children to read. Once your child knows some sounds they will begin to blend. This means your child will say the individual sounds and then push them together to read the word.

Oral Blending

Blending can be tricky at first because there are lots of steps. Your child needs to recognise the letters, know what sound they represent, sound out the word, hold the sounds in their head and then push them together to make a word.

Before we teach children to blend the letters they can see, it helps if we teach them to blend the sounds they can hear. This is called oral blending. You can develop oral blending skills every day as part of your daily routine. Sound talk a word and model how to blend it immediately afterwards. Remember to say each sound in the word rather than each letter e.g. t-ee-th not t-e-e-t-h.

Let's brush our t-ee-th, teeth. It's time for b-e-d, bed.

Once your child becomes more confident with oral blending they might be able to blend the sounds you say.

Oral Blending Game

Pick some picture cards from the Phase 2 Words and Captions set and sound one of them out. Can your child find the matching card? e.g. I spy a m-a-p.

Turn the cards over to see how to represent the sounds (phonemes) using letters (graphemes).

Blending to Read

During Phase 2, children begin to match letters to sounds and then blend them to read words.

Children learn that two letters can work together to make one sound e.g. ck, ff, ll, ss. This is called a digraph.

Sound Lines

We use sound lines to help children spot digraphs within a word so they say each sound rather than each letter e.g. p-a-ck not p-a-c-k.

Dot = a single letter making one sound

Line = two/three letters working together to make one sound.


The Phase 2 Words and Captions pack is full of words made of Phase 2 sounds for your child to have a go at blending.


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