More Easy Reading Tips with Fast Phonics

March 19, 2017 2:13 pm Published by

Once again Grammar schools are on the agenda and once again, with the predicability of a snowflake melting in hot sun, all those dangerously divisive voices have been raised in protest.

All I can say is that this country needs its brains and if your child has the chance to go to a Grammar it will be a golden opportunity to receive the best education leading to the finest opportunities life has to offer.

Above all, Grammar school placings must be won on merit alone. My Primary school was tiny and many, many miles from the city. The parents were predominately dirt poor farm workers, the school library a shelf of very old books and attendance random at best. The girls I competed against for a Grammar school place were mostly from large city Junior High schools, (Intermediates) and had already had two full years of French, Latin, Science and advanced Maths. They tended to come from homes with educated parents, books, secure jobs, holidays and an interest in education. Of course there were exceptions, like myself, but in the main my peers had been exposed to much wider opportunities and an education better suited to a Grammar school place. I competed and passed the examinations fairly and squarely.

My results, throughout those Grammar school years, most certainly did not trouble the real achievers, but among the average batters I held my own. Had I ever been told, or been made even remotely aware, my tests were easier because my family was poor or that my results were adjusted for the same reason I would have carried that shame throughout life. To alter entrance exams, or later tests for various children for various reasons, I consider patronizing at best and social engineering at worst. I have taught in both State and Public schools and have seen brilliance and top achievement in both. Meritocracy in Grammar schools is vital for the educational prosperity of future generations. So, you are the parents, the matter sits firmly in your hands. Don’t let this country go into an academic meltdown due to the redefining of entrance exams and the dumbing down of standards. Your child deserves better.

Now for the next step forward in our reading programme.

oa pronounced ‘oh’ as in ‘boat.’

ea pronounced ‘ee’ as in, ‘each, ‘leap.’

oh pronounced as a long ‘oh.’

‘Oh, what a nice day.’

ah pronounced ‘ar.’

‘Ah, I see you have arrived.’

qu pronounced ‘kw.’

‘qu’ we have had around since phonic alphabet days, for it is virtually impossible in our language to separate the ‘q’ from the ‘u’. Now is the time to include it as the valuable fast phonic it truly is.

Glow. A new sight word pronounced g|l|oh.

Your fast phonic list, surprisingly, now consists of :

You, the, they, I, me, a, no, little, your, we, beautiful, come, go, to, be, she, saw, my, house, was, do, for, he.

Final y.

Double letters.

oo, ee, sh, wh, th, ck, ch.

Magic e (split digraph)

ang, eng, ing, ong, ung.

ar, er, ir, or, ur.

said, oh, ar, one, friend, magic, colour, their, great, who.

all, ell, ill, oll, ull.


tion, sion, cean, cien, tious, cious, ous, cial, sial, tial.

oa, ea.

glow, oh, ah, qu.

Now are you ready to read the following?

‘Alice suddenly remembered Queen Arianne’s instructions. She had said Lampyris was big, much bigger than ordinary glow-worms and had a green patch on his head. She reminded the others and they sat still, on the grassy bank, wondering what on earth they’d do.

”Well, we can’t sit here forever,” Sinead whispered. ”I think we’ll have to keep going, check the size of this particular glow-worm and if it’s normal I suppose we just press on until we find Lampyris.”

”Oh fine,” replied Alice witheringly, ”if it’s not Lampyris we’ll just keep going and going and getting hopelessly lost. Is that what you mean? A really wicked idea Sinead, I don’t think.”

Leo sensed it was time for a bit of brotherly leadership.

”Girls, while you’ve been ah, chatting, I’ve been thinking. We’ve seen a glow-worm, it might be Lampyris and it might not. But, it is a glow-worm, the first one we’ve seen tonight. That means we must be close to the Caves of Alonah. Let’s check this bright little friend and if he’s not the one we want, then we shall sit here until the right one comes along. Oh,” he added quickly, ”we had better continue to be pretty quiet.” Like his sisters he was constantly aware Fulmen might be anywhere at any time.’

(The Magic Caves of Alonah by Robyn Dalby-Stockwell)

Slow going? Never mind, it is all part of learning to read.


This is Teaching Post 12

Link to Teaching Post 13

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This post was written by Alonah Reading Cambridge

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