Posts Tagged ‘phonics’

Review Consonant Letter Sounds

SoundCards180x150       Review Letter Sounds

Objective:  Children will recognize the Consonant Capital and Lowercase (small) letters and their sounds.  (This lesson can be taught 4 times; once for each group of letter consonant sounds.   bhlft, prmnk, cdsgj, qvwyz)



  • Play the songs for each of the sounds to be reviewed.  
  • Give each child one or more Sound Cards (spellings for each sound) including the sounds to be reviewed.  Say a sound then have the children give you the sound card that goes with each sound. 
  • Use magnet letters or cards with capital and small letters to match the capitals with their small letter.  Talk about if they look more alike or if they look different.
  • Make words by writing or using magnet letters.  You pick a vowel and a consonant to be reviewed.  Let children pick another consonant and see if you can make a word or just make some fun sounds.  Or you can have a child pick a vowel and another child pick a consonant then you pick another consonant that makes a word.   Sound out the words together.  


  • Show the children the worksheet.  Have them help decide which capital letters go with which small letters.
  • Give a worksheet to each child.  Have them match the letters and write their name.
  • Say what each picture is and ask what letter sound it starts with.  Review how to make the letter on your sample worksheet, and then have each child write the letter on their worksheet.   Continue until finished.
  • All worksheets need to be done with a teacher and they need to be done right.  Never use a worksheet to test the children.  Use them as a learning experience.  They are a great hands-on continuation of the lesson.
  • It is fun to have them write a simple word on the back and draw a picture, such as sad.

Reading activities to help children at any stage of reading development.

 Stages of Reading DevelopmentOO

These are some ideas for helping children read at the different stages of reading. 

Adults working with children need to know:

  • Consonant sounds need to be learned crisply without adding an “uh” at the end.
  • Schwa (or lazy or UH) sound is the most common sound in the English language and all vowels sometimes make that sound.

1. Children learning to hear sounds in words.

  •    Music speeds up learning of the sounds.  We have fun music with our phonics. Contact us if you would like free music and books.  877-206-2214 
  •    Picture cards representing the sound, instead of something that starts with the sounds, is easier for young children to understand.  Example is the picture above from our Phonics By Spelling books.  The short oo sound is the sound you make when you lift something heavy like big books. Some words with that sound are; look, book, hook.  
  •    Rhyming games and activities.
  •    Reading and predictable readers.
  •    Show and Tell. Examples; Have children bring something that starts or ends with a sound or 2 items that rhyme. 
  •    Pick out the sounds in the beginning/middle/end from pictures of objects.
  •    Learn vowels and consonants.  Our Cinco game is fun for reviewing these letters and sounds.

2. Children starting to blend sounds: 

  •    Sounding out words aids in fluency and comprehension.  Don’t let children struggle by themselves to sound out for more than 1 or 2 seconds.  Help them sound out the words.
  •    Simple phonetic readers.
  •    Word families.   Make lists of words with the same spelling and sounds at the end like; dot, hot, pot, got, not, shot.
  •    Sound out 3 letter words with or without pictures.
  •    Have child unscramble simple words.  Find or print a picture of a simple word like “cat”.  Then print the letters for the word on card stock, then cut apart. Put the picture and letters together in an envelope.  
  •    Do different vowels in the middle of consonants.
  •    Do short vowel /long vowel chant with the silent e.  Make some cards with 2 words like; cap/cape, hop/hope.   Example of the chant:  cub & cube, cub & cube,  cub says ŭ, cube says ū.  
  •    Teach sight words.  Most words have some phonetic base but here are some basic words that break the rules:  one, said, says, give, have, many, they, are, any. 
  •    Teach high frequency words by their vowel sounds.  This is a list of about 200 of the most frequent words. High Frequency Word List

3. The Beginning Reader: 

  •    Have child read simple sentences.
  •    Have child unscramble simple sentences. Write simple sentences on the computer then print and cut apart. 
  •    Review sounds and sight words in a simple book.  Then help the child read the book.
  •    Help children sound out words.
  •    Help child to break multi-syllable words into syllables then sound out.  Cover with your thumb all but one syllable then uncover each syllable while sounding out the word. 

 4. Fluent Reader:

  •   They need to read out loud right into junior high.
  •   Read things at different reading levels.  Too high creates frustration unless read with someone. Too low helps with fluency.  Just right builds vocabulary.
  •   Read along with books with CDs.
  •   Build comprehension by having children tell you what is happening in the story.
  •   Use your finger to help break words into syllables to sound out words.
  •   Pick some words to look up in the dictionary.

If you have questions or would like help teaching reading to those you love, please contact us. 877-206-2214 

Spellings and Their Sounds

This is a handy list of the sounds for each spelling.  

List of Consonant Sounds for Each Spelling.

  • b/bb                      Bb or silent
  • c                            Kk or Ss when the C is followed by an e, i or y.
  • ck                         Kk
  • cks                       Xx/KS
  • ch                         CH, SH for French origin words, or Kk
  • d/ed                      Dd or Tt for the suffix -ed
  • f/ff                         Ff or rarely Vv (of)
  • g/gg                      Gg or Jj when the Gg is followed by an e,i or y
  • gh                         Gg, Ff or silent
  • gn                         Nn
  • gu                         Gg (guess)
  • h                           Hh, or silent as in hour
  • J                             Jj
  • k                           Kk
  • kn                         Nn
  • ks/kes                   Xx/KS
  • l/ll                          Ll, rarely Rr (colonel) or silent when followed by f, m, k, or d. (calf, calm, yolk, could)
  • le/el                       Ll
  • m/mm                   Mm or rarely silent.
  • mn/mb                  Mm
  • n/nn                      Nn or silent
  • ng/n                      NG also when a N is followed by a K it has the NG sound
  • p/pp                      Pp
  • ph                         Ff or Pp
  • pn                         Nn
  • ps                         Ss
  • pt                          Tt or at the end of a syllable it can have a Pp/Tt blend.
  • qu                         Qu/KW
  • r/rh                       Rr if at the beginning of a syllable or word
  • s/ss                      Ss, Zz, _S_(ZH), or SH (sugar)
  • si                          _S_ (ZH) or SH
  • sh                         SH
  • t/tt                         Tt
  • ti                          SH, or Tt
  • th                         TH as in thumb, TH as in this, or Tt (thyme)
  • v                           Vv
  • w                          Ww or silent vowel helper (know)
  • wh                        WH, or rarely Hh (who)
  • wr                         Rr when at the beginning of a syllable
  • x                           Xx/KS at the end of a word/syllable, or Zz at the beginning of a word
  • y                           Yy when it begins a word/syllable otherwise it is a vowel (Look at Vowels)
  • z                           Zz or rarely _S_ (ZH) (seizure)

List of Vowel Sound for Each Spelling

  • a                  Long A, UH, AW (all), or short Aa when followed by a consonant in the syllable
  • a_e/ai          Long A, Short Ee (said), short Ii (mountain), Long I (aisle) or Short Aa (plaid, have)
  • air                AIR
  • ar                 AR OR when following a “W” (warm), or ER when it is a suffix (dollar)
  • are               AIR or AR when all alone (are)
  • au                Long A, AW, or Short A (laugh)
  • aw               AW
  • ay                Long A or Long I (kayak)
  • e                  Long E, UH or Short Ee when followed by a consonant in the syllable
  • ea                Long E, Long A (break), or Short Ee (head)
  • ear               EAR or AIR (bear)
  • ee/e_e         Long E or rarely Long A (matinee)
  • ei                 Long A, Long E when following a “C”, or rarely Long I
  • eo                Rare Long E (people) or Long O
  • et                 Short Ee, or Long A (ballet)
  • ew               Long OO or Long U
  • ey                Long E, Long I (geyser, eye) or Long A (they)
  • i                   Long I, UH, Short Ii when followed by a consonant in the syllable, Long E (pizza)
  • ia                 Long I (diamond)
  • ie                 Long I if it ends the first syllable, Long E, or rarely Long A (lingerie)
  • i_e               Long I, Long E (machine), or Short Ii (give)
  • igh               Long I
  • is                 Long I (island), or Long E (debris)
  • ir                  ER or Long I (fire)
  • o                  Long O, UH, Short Oo when followed by a consonant, short I (women), Long OO (to), Short OO when following a “W” (wolf), or UH (son)
  • oa                Long O
  • oe                Long O or Long OO (canoe)
  • o_e              Long O, UH (some), Short Oo (gone), or Long OO (move)
  • oi                 OY
  • oo                Long OO (boo), or Short OO (book)
  • or                 OR, or ER when it follows a “W” (work) or at the end (doctor)
  • ore/oar/oor  OR
  • ou                OW, UH (double), AW (cough), OR (four), Long OO (soup), or Short OO (could)
  • ow                Long O, or OW
  • oy                 OY
  • u                   Long U, Short Uu/UH when followed by a consonant in the syllable, Long OO (tuna), or Short OO (put)
  • ue                 Long U or Long OO
  • u_e               Long U, Long OO (tube) or UH (judge)
  • ui                  Long OO
  • ur                  ER
  • y                   Long E multi-syllable words, Long I first syllable, or Short I when followed by consonant

More phonics materials available through our website.

TH Phonics Sounds

TH Sounds

Objective: Help children recognize the two sounds of TH in words and compare it to the Tt sound.


  • Have masking tape and a wipe board or chalkboard with an eraser.
  • Collect some pictures with the TH sound and the Tt sound at the beginning.
  • Write “th” on a card and write “t” on another card.
  • Decide on an activity and make preparations for it.  We have great worksheets and simple books in our Reproducible Workbook.   Also, our music and pictures for each sound help learn the sounds and their spellings.


  • Listen to at least the songs for the Tt sound and the 2 TH sounds in the Phonics By Spelling Books.  (If you have them.)   Take the masking tape and pull some off to show how it makes the louder TH sound.  Have the children make that sound.  Say some words with that sound such as; Thumb,  Thank, Thursday.  Use an eraser to erase the board and listen to the quiet sound of TH.  Say some words with that sound such as; The, This, There.  Most of the words with this sound are hard to find pictures for them.  There are not a lot of words with this sound but we use those few words often.   Review the Tt sound, or the sound of a Ticking Clock.  Say some words with that sound such as; Ten, Toes, Tent.
  • Put a card with TH on it and a card with T on the table.  Take the pictures you have collected and show them one at a time.  Ask the children to pick which sound the picture starts with.  Then put the picture on the TH or T.
  • See if any of the children have the TH sound in their name.


  • Take a plain paper and have the children trace their hand on it.  Have them color only the thumb.  Have them write a “th” or the word “thumb” on the hand.  Have them write high frequency words on the paper like; the, this, they.
  • Do a Thank You book of things they are thankful for.
  • Make Thumb Pies.  Make a pie crust or sugar cookie dough.  Roll it into small rolls. Place it on the cookie sheet.  Push the middle down with your thumb.  Bake then fill with jelly.  Yum!
  • If you have the worksheet for TH from Phonics By Spelling, make copies for each child and do the worksheet together.

Check out our website for our phonics products.

What do you remember because of a song?

We remember best what we learn through music.

Simple and catchy works best.  Take simple tunes and put anything you want to learn or teach children to those tunes.  I teach the months of the year to the tune of Ten Little IndiansNo special music talent is needed to teach with music.  Have fun with musical learning.

Phonics By Spelling has fun, simple music and pictures for learning all 44 phonetic sounds.

For more educational products and information visit

Lesson Plan for Short Vowel Uu

Letter Uu

Objective:  Teach the short Uu or Schwa sound,  recognize some words with that sound, and compare it to the long sound of Uu .


  • Be prepared to talk about the sound of disappointment.  (Uh!).  Check out our website for phonics materials taught through music and our phonics lesson plans.
  • Copy the poem, “Look Up”.
  • Collect some pictures That start with the short sound of Uu and the long sound of Uu.
  • Copy this word paper. Uu words
  • Have a large paper to write an “UP” poem.
  • Write some high frequency Schwa words on cards. (the, a, love, come, some, away, up, us, but, etc.
  • Possible book:  Great Day for Up by Dr. Suess


Listen to at least 10 songs in Phonics By Spelling books including the long and short sounds of “Uu”.

Johnny worked so hard to build his block tower.  Uh! He was so sad when he made it fall.  Let’s make the “Uh! So Sad!” sound together.  This sound or schwa sound is the most used sound in the English language.  Every vowel can make this sound.  In multi-syllable words, the unaccented syllable often has the schwa sound.

Read the poem, “Look Up”.

  • Look up at the sky.
  • What do you see?
  • Gray clouds up,
  • Rain coming down.
  • What will we do?
  • Where will we go?
  • Under my umbrella,
  • Don’t you know.
  •   -Anonymous

Talk about the short Uu words in the poem.

Show and discuss pictures of things that have the short and long sound of Uu.


Give each child a paper with Uu words. Uu words

  • Read the words together.
  • Have them draw the pictures for each word.  You may want to help by step by step showing them simple ways to draw each picture.
  • Have them practice writing some of the words, make rhyming words or make the letter Uu.
  • Read together some Schwa high frequency or short vowel U words.  Have them write some of the words on the back of their paper.   

You may also write a poem about “UP” together.

Possibly, read the book, Great Day for Up, by Dr. Suess.

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