Letters and Sounds Information

Children in the Butterfly group have phonics sessions every morning and afternoon.  These sessions are led by Bev who gets to know the children really well, knowing when some need a little extra support and others need challenging with regards to phonics.  

Our phonics sessions are based on a combinations of the Letters and Sounds scheme and Read, Write Inc. Children learn not only how to recognise the sound but how to pronounce it phonetically, link it to words and how to form letters correctly when writing. We practise the formation of the letter by air writing whilst reciting the Read Write Inc rhyme (you can see these below). Many children are observed to be continuing this in their writing books or at the mark making table, showing that they are listening and taking in the information.

Whilst mark making or writing, we encourage the children to hold the pencil close to the tip using a tripod grip, (two fingers and thumb). Some children develop this skill earlier than others and some have more strength in their fingers than others which affects the marks they make.  We support children who find this skill quite tricky with 'funky fingers' activities.  These activities help the children develop strength in their hands and fingers, enabling them to hold the pencil tightly enough to form letters or make marks.  Some of the activities children participate in include:

* Playdough play - squeezing, poking, patting and rolling the dough with hands and fingers

* Threading

* Finger painting

* Building towers

* Using tweezers and scissors

* Picking up small objects with the forefinger and thumb

* Ripping, tearing and scrunching paper

Below is a copy of the letters and the rhyme we use. Please use the examples to help encourage your children at home, especially if they are showing an interest in letters and sounds and mark making.


a – apple – around the apple and down the leaf

b – boot – down the laces to the heel, up and around the toe

c - caterpillar – curl around the caterpillar

d – dinosaur – around his bottom, up his long neck and down to his feet

e – egg – lift off the top and scoop out the egg

f – flower – down the stem and draw the leaves

g – girl – round her face, down her hair and give her a curl

h – horse – down the head to the hooves up and over his back

i – insect – down the body and dot for the head

j – jack-in-a-box – down his body curl and dot

k- kangaroo - down the kangaroo’s body, tail and leg

l – leg – down the long leg

m – Maisie mountain – Maisie, mountain, mountain

n – net – down Nobby, over his net

o – orange – all around the orange

p – pirate – down the plait and over the pirate’s face

qu – queen – round her head, up past her earrings and down her hair

r – robot – down his back, then curl over his arm

s – snake – slither down the snake

t – tower – down the tower, across the tower

u – umbrella – down and under, up to the top and draw the puddle

v – vulture – down a wing, up a wing

w – worm – down, up, down, up

x – exercise – down the arm and leg and repeat the other side

y- yak – down a horn, up a horn and under his head

z – zip – zig- zag- zig

Below is a great website which informs you of the correct phonic pronunciation to use: https://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/for-home/advice-for-parents/reading-at-home/phonics-made-easy/

How can you help at home?

Early phonics development starts with what we see and hear around us.  Some of the activities we enjoy at Busy Bees which you could try at home include: 


* Listening walks

* Songs and rhymes

* Favourite stories with repeated phrases

* What’s in the box game – can your child guess the item from listening only

* Musical instruments – matching the sounds, tapping banging

* Body percussion – create sounds using our bodies, clicking fingers, clapping, stamping feet, follow a rhythm.

* I spy games

* Listening and matching items which start with the same sound (alliteration)

* Mirror play – watching your mouth create different sounds,

* Experiment to create voice – at the park whoosh, whee, chchch, boing

* Observing signs when out and about – can they find the letter for their name etc.