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Phonemic Awareness

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crystal walton-wyche

on 15 January 2015

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Transcript of Phonemic Awareness

What is Phonemic Awareness?
Phonemic awareness is the ability to notice, think about, and work with the individual sounds in spoken words. Before children learn to read print, they need to become aware of how the sounds in words work. They must understand that words are made up of speech sounds, or phonemes.

What does research say about students who struggle with phonemic awareness?
A ten-year study by the Institute of Health and Child Development (1985-1995) found that 88% of reading difficulties were grounded in weak phonemic awareness. Alternatively, strong phonemic awareness not only made initial reading acquisition easier, it contributed to increased reading fluency throughout life.

A long line of research now agrees that phonemic awareness is the best predictor of the ease of early reading acquisition, better than IQ, vocabulary, and listening comprehension. (Stanovich, 1993-94).
Why is Phonemic Awareness needed in the school system?
Phonemic Awareness is essential to learning to read in an alphabetic writing system, because letters represent sounds or phonemes. Without phonemic awareness, phonics makes little sense.

According to the National Reading Panel Report (National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, 2000), the level of phonemic awareness that children possess when first beginning reading instruction and their knowledge of letters are the two best predictors of how well they will learn to read during the first two years of formal reading instruction.

Researchers Adams, Foorman, Lundberg, & Beeler (1998) tell us that before children learn to read, they must understand that the sounds that are paired with the letters are the same as the sounds of speech they hear. They state, “For those of us who already know how to read and write, this realization seems very basic, almost transparent. Nevertheless, research shows that the very notion that spoken language is made up of sequences of these little sounds does not come naturally or easily to human beings” (p. 1). A strong understanding of phonemic concepts must be solidly in place prior to formal instruction in reading. It is critical that a child make the association that words on the page are simply “talk written down.”
It requires readers to notice how letters represent sounds.
It gives readers a way to approach sounding out and reading new words.
It helps readers understand the alphabetic principle (that the letters in words are systematically represented by sounds).

Phonemic awareness is fundamental to mapping speech to print. If a child cannot hear that "man" and "moon" begin with the same sound or cannot blend the sounds /rrrrrruuuuuunnnnn/ into the word "run", he or she may have great difficulty connecting sounds with their written symbols or blending sounds to make a word.

Why should this be an area of concern for teachers?
While phonemic awareness is easily taught to children in the early years, the absence of strong oral language, reading, and word play lead to reading difficulties and a failure to progress in reading development (Hammill & McNutt, 1980; Scarborough, 1998).

The level of phonemic awareness that a child possesses accounts for as much as 50 percent of the variance in reading proficiency by the end of 1st grade (Blachman, 1991; Juel, 1991; Stanovich, 1986; Wagner, Torgeson, & Roshotte, 1994).

The degree of phonemic awareness that the child has developed upon entry into school is widely held to be the strongest single determinant of the child's reading success (Adams, 1990; Stanovich, 1986; Snow, Burns, & Griffin, 1998).

According to researchers Snow, Burns, & Griffin (1998), “Cognitive studies of reading have identified phonological processing as crucial to successful reading and so it seems logical to suspect that poor readers may have phonological processing problems.”

Between 40 and 75 percent of preschoolers with early language impairments develop reading difficulties and other academic problems as they enter formal schooling (Aram & Hall, 1989; Brashir & Scavuzzo, 1992).

What problems do readers usually exhibit in this area?
Here are some indicators for students who may have problems with phonemic awareness:

Having a difficult time completing blending activities; for example, students are unable to put together the sounds /k/ /i/ /ck/ to make the word kick.
Having a difficult time completing phoneme substitution activities; for example, students are unable to change the /m/ in mate to /cr/ in order to make crate.
Having a difficult time telling how many syllables there are in a word.
Having a difficult time with rhyming, syllabication, or spelling a new word by its sound.

Sum It Up!!!!!!
Phonemic awareness is
• the ability to hear, identify, and manipulate individual sounds—phonemes— in spoken words.

Phonemic awareness is important because
• it improves children’s word reading and reading comprehension.
• it helps children learn to spell.

Phonemic awareness can be developed through a number of activities, including asking children to
• identify phonemes
• categorize phonemes
• blend phonemes to form words
• segment words into phonemes
• delete or add phonemes to form new words
• substitute phonemes to make new words.

Phonemic awareness instruction is most effective
• when children are taught to manipulate phonemes by using the letters of the alphabet.
• when instruction focuses on only one or two rather than several types of phoneme manipulation.

5 strategies\activates
Syllable Game
: As students progress in their literacy understanding, they move from reading and writing single syllable words (often with consonant-vowel-consonant constructions) to reading and writing multisyllabic words. Instruction focused on teaching
students about syllables often focuses on teaching different types of syllables (open and closed) and what occurs when syllables join together within a word.

Differentiated instruction for second language learners, students of varying reading skill, and for younger learners
Use pictures instead of words in activities for younger and lower level readers
Include auditory and hands-on activities (i.e., clapping hands, tapping the desk, or marching in place to the syllables in children's names)
Include a writing activity for more advanced learners.

Rhyming Game
:Rhyme is found in poetry, songs, and many children's books and games. Most children also love to sing and recite nursery rhymes. Words that can be grouped together by a common sound, for example the "-at" family — cat, hat, and sat — can be used to teach children about similar spellings. Children can use these rhyme families when learning to read and spell.

Differentiated instruction for Second Language Learners, students of varying reading skill, and for younger learners
Use pictures instead of words in activities for younger and lower level readers.
Include oral rhyming activities. ~Include a writing activity for more advance learners.
Use blank diagrams for more advance learners to complete (see example here).

Onset/Rime Game
: Similar to teaching beginning readers about rhyme, teaching children about onset and rime helps them recognize common chunks within words. This can help students decode new words when reading and spell words when writing.

Differentiated instruction or second language learners, students of varying reading skill, and for younger learners
Have students create and write word sorts of the target word pattern
Use pictures instead of words in activities for younger and lower level readers

Blending and Segmenting Games
: Children who can segment and blend sounds easily are able to use this knowledge when reading and spelling. Segmenting and blending individual sounds can be difficult at the beginning. Our recommendation is to begin with segmenting and blending syllables. Once familiar with that, students will be prepared for instruction and practice with individual sounds.

Differentiated instruction for second language learners, students of varying reading skill, and for younger learners
Use oral activities to help support students of lower level reading skills.
Use activities that include pictures to support ESL students and younger students.
Ask students to write the words that they form in the blending/segmenting activities.

Elkonin Boxes
: They help students build phonological awareness by segmenting words into sounds or syllables., they teach students how to count the number of phonemes in the word (not always the number of letters), and they help students better understand the alphabetic principle in decoding and spelling.

Differentiated instruction for Second Language Learners, students of varying reading skill, and for younger learners
Have more advanced students write letters in the boxes as you dictate words.
Teachers can use this strategy in the following ways to meet each student's individualized reading level:
Words with pictures and only two boxes
Words with pictures and three boxes
Words with no pictures and up to four boxes

Phonemic Awareness
By Tracie Singletary &
Crystal Walton

What You Should Know?

Phonemic awareness is not phonics.
Phonemic awareness is the understanding that the sounds of
spoken language work together to make words. Phonics is the understanding that there is a predictable relationship between phonemes and graphemes, the letters that represent those sounds in written language. If children are to benefit from phonics instruction, they need phonemic awareness.
Phonological awareness and Phonemic awareness are not interchangeable.
Phonemic awareness is a subcategory of phonological awareness. The focus of phonemic awareness is narrow— identifying and manipulating the individual sounds in words. The focus of phonological awareness is much broader. It includes identifying and manipulating larger parts of spoken language, such as words, syllables, and onsets and rimes—as well as phonemes. It also encompasses awareness of other aspects of sound, such as rhyming, alliteration, and intonation.

Armbruster, B., & Lehr, F. (2001). Put reading first: The research building blocks for teaching children to read : Kindergarten through grade 3. Washington, D.C.?: National Institute for Literacy, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, U.S. Dept. of Education.

Awareness. (n.d.). Retrieved January 15, 2015, from http://www.learningrx.com/phonemic-awareness.htm

Big Ideas in Beginning Reading. (n.d.). Retrieved January 15, 2015, from http://reading.uoregon.edu/

Big Ideas in Beginning Reading. (n.d.). Retrieved January 15, 2015, from http://reading.uoregon.edu/big_ideas/pa/pa_what.php

Membership. (n.d.). Retrieved January 15, 2015, from http://www.ascd.org/publications/books/103316/chapters/Readiness~Phonemic-Awareness.aspx

Reading Rockets. (n.d.). Retrieved January 15, 2015, from http://www.readingrockets.com

Tankersley, K. (2003). Threads of reading strategies for literacy development. Alexandria, Va.: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Tompkins, G. (2006). Literacy for the 21st century: A balanced approach (4th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education/Merrill/Prentice Hall.

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