Phonics Instruction Phase Four:
Blending and Segmenting
In Phase Four (typically at the end of Kindergarten into First Grade/Reception into Year 1), children begin blending sounds to create new words. They can confidently read and write the letters of the alphabet. They may also rely less on sounding out words they have seen frequently like sat or pot, as they begin to learn and read some words automatically.
Children learn to read and spell more challenging CVCC words, as well as new high frequency sight words. As they progress, children also begin to write short sentences. The goal of this stage is consolidation and reinforcement -- ensuring children are confident in beginning phonics so they can succeed in Phases Five and Six. This phase usually takes four to six weeks but can last for several more weeks, depending on the child. Most children will complete it at some time around the end of Kindergarten or Reception, but this may vary.
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Phonics is the method that helps children build systematic connections between letters and sounds. Phonics has a better impact on children’s reading ability than any other type of reading program. It has also been shown to improve spelling, particularly among kindergarteners and first graders.
To find out more, read our Deep Dive into Phonics report. This report provides an easy-to-understand overview of phonics and phonemic awareness - why they are important and how they are taught in the classroom - and explains all the relevant terminology. It's perfect for sharing with colleagues, friends, and to Google Classroom!