Phonological Awareness

PHONOLOGICAL AWARENESS is…
Being able to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words, and to hear and use rhyme.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
It helps children sound out words as they begin to read. Research shows that most children who have difficulty reading have trouble with this skill.

BUILD THE SKILL:
Babies
•From 0-24 months simply focus on immersing your child in language and rhyme.
•Make simple sounds and animal sounds. Speaking in “parentese” until babies are about 9 months old allows them to hear smaller sounds in words and is more appealing to infants than adult conversation.
•Read animal sound books, song books, & nursery rhyme books. Point to pictures as they’re mentioned in the book.
•Singing “slows down” language and helps children hear smaller sounds in words because there’s usually a different note for each syllable. Clapping, tapping or stomping along helps little ones learn sounds in words and improve motor skills.
•Listen to music- in the car, at home, during transitions.

Toddlers
•Read books with rhyming and repetitive text.
•Sing books- many books can be sung to familiar tunes
•Point out sounds you hear in environment
•Sing nursery rhymes and songs and use movement to reinforce rhyme.
•Sing or listen to music during transition times.

Preschoolers
•Read rhyming books, alliteration stories, poetry. Point out words that rhyme, or pause and let the child supply the next rhyming word.
•Listen to music
•Sing nursery rhymes and songs.
•Play rhyming games:
-Say a word (cat) and have your child fill in the rhyming word.
-Clap out syllables in words.
-Play “I Spy”: “I spy something red that rhymes with ____” (bed) or “I spy with my little eye something that rhymes with sock” (clock) Give clues.
-Say a word and have your child give a rhyming word back: Mike/bike, etc.
-Sound out first letter in child’s name.
-Ask- which two words rhyme? Stair, steel, chair?
-Have fun with tongue twisters.