The lack of phonological awareness skills causes so many problems for beginning readers. The following 5 Phonological Awareness skills are the most important skills needed to develop reading and writing skills for all readers and writers.
Although they seem so simple to us, each part is important and needs to be taught and practiced!
What are phonological awareness skills?
1. Word Awareness-Tracking words in sentences. Here are few things to look for:
- number of spaces,
- number of words,
- number of lines,
- what and where do you find at the beginning (capital letter),
- what and where is the end (punctuation),
You will be surprised at how many of your students struggle with a few of these concepts. Bring a few up each time you work in guided reading to help develop these skills. You can also do it with poetry. Check out how I use word awareness with poetry here. Check out how I show word awareness with👉Humpty Dumpty.
2. Responsiveness to rhyme and alliteration during word play-Enjoying and reciting rhyming words or alliterative phrases in familiar storybooks or nursery rhymes. This is not about supplying rhyming words. Rhyming poems and nursery rhymes are a great way to practice. Check out Rhyming Books and Games for a few ideas.
5. Phonemic Awareness–It is the most difficult phonological awareness skill that manipulates the smallest sounds in speech called phonemes.
1st Step-Identify and match the initial sounds in words, then the final and middle sounds.
2nd Step-Segment and produce the initial sound. (What sound does bat start with? /b/)
3rd Step-Segment and produce the the final sound. (What sound is at the end of bat? /t/)
4th Step-Segment and produce the middle sound. (Say the vowel sound in rope /long o/)
5th Step-Blend sounds into words When I say these sounds, what word am I saying? /m/ /ē/ /t/.
Say it fast-meat)
6th Step-Segment the phonemes in two- or three-sound words moving to four- and five- sound words (The word is pie. Stretch and say the sounds: /p/ /ī/ )
7th Step– Manipulate phonemes by removing, adding, or substituting sounds (Say smoke without the /k/).
Phonemic Awareness activities can be fun!
I hope you’ve found my tips on phonological awareness helpful. If you have any additional tips that might help a teacher, please share it with us!