What are the benefits of teaching phonics in a proactive and synthetic way to young children?

It’s always a question that many teachers ask themselves when it comes down to teaching young learners to read and write. It implies a not-so-easy answer especially when you are meant to teach English as a foreign language.

In my experience if you follow a simple 5-step approach to work on synthetic phonics you will allow children to build so much self-confidence that they will learn to decode ( blending sounds to read words) and encode (segmenting sounds to write words) effortlessly.


1/2) Introducing the sound, not the letter name. Give learners plenty of time to say it.

3) Writing the sound. First, the sound can be traced up in the air and then on small whiteboards, sheets or any other formats. Here It is important that they become familiar with the grapheme.

4) Reading words with that sound. Blending.

5) Spelling words with that sound. Segmenting.

I always follow this ritual for every single sound as well as revising all the sounds introduced before.

It is also worth noting that young kids learn all these sounds more effectively if given within a real context. I quite often use everyday objects or appealing prompts for this.

Working with this approach over the past two years has enabled Y2K Spanish learners to read and write words, sentences and even short texts with increasing confidence using an almost native-like pronunciation and accuracy.

And what’s more, the love for reading books and interest in Writing even in a foreign language is just amazing.

Hardly do other teachers and parents believe that these 6/7 year olds have achieved these standards in English.

By applying this phonetic approach children feel more confident, motivated and independent when reading and writing for different purposes.

Related links:
synthetic phonics:

EFL (English as a foreign language):


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