Teacher Tips for Phonics Lessons

Hello to all Qkids teachers and friends! My name is Teacher Alissa. I'm an online ESL teacher in a small town in Canada. My passions include animals, learning about languages and cultures, and playing board games with my husband. 
I have been a teacher with Qkids for over a year now and I really enjoy it! I have taught over 900 classes since July 2018 and have received over 1100 likes. The staff, the students, and lesson plans are all wonderful and I couldn't have asked for more!

Qkids has a variety of curriculums available for students: General, Phonics, Science courses. Today I will be giving you an insight into the phonics lessons and tips on how to improve.

What is Phonics?

As we know, in the English language there are 26 letters but letters have distinct spoken sounds. For example, a C can sound like an "s" or a "k." Those sounds, in particular, are called phonics. With certain groupings of letters or the way the letters are arranged can change how it sounds. Altogether there are 44 phonemes represented in English.
Currently, with Qkids there are 2 levels for phonics: Level 1 is for each letter sound, and Level 2 is for extra vowel sounds (ex. Magic e or long vowel sounds)

How is Phonics Taught?

The structure for a typical phonics lesson is letter name, letter sound, letter blending, segmenting, and sight words. With phonics, it involves strong repetition and a lot of energy, although it sounds like a lot of work it really is rewarding to see your students progress. For reference, today we will be taking a look at the letter S!

Letter Name

One of the first slides, the students are shown the big and small version of the letter. For this, I would explain to the children these are the letters we will be practicing and show them the sound the letter makes "sss, sss, sss" and have them repeat it after me. I also encourage them to say hello to our letter friends to get them excited.
After I would introduce big 'S' and small 's' separately and get them to repeat their names over and over to get their brains turning, and there are some activities to help them remember the letter names (ex. Jigsaw, Classification).
One activity I enjoy is tracing out the letter with the students. First I show the students how to trace the letter with my finger along with the mouse. Then I encourage the students to click to write out the letter themselves. To help with this, I also write out the letter with the marker and highlight function to help see how S is properly written out. After I always tell the students that they did a good job as they worked hard to write the letter out.

Letter Sound

Next, the lesson includes 3 words that begin with the letter that we are learning about today. For example, Snake, spider, and sun. I encourage the students to repeat the letter sounds "sss, sss, sss" and the letter sounds that make the word "sss snake, sss spider, sss sun." Then we review the words together in different ways (loud, quietly, 3 times) and if able, I use hand gestures and stickers to grab attention. The students love the games too (Match cards and what's missing), so make sure to use the most of those!

Blending and Sight Words

Practicing how to blend letter sounds together is important as they help the student to improve their reading, speaking, and writing. We practice blending all together first with what the lesson plan provides. Then with Lucky Machine, I focus on each student individually to see their progress and give them help when needed. After each time the students get commendation and a sticker because the students like to give their best effort. I find if a student is being quiet at this time, I encourage them to sound out the letters with me and to form a word together to boost their confidence.
Sight words are words that are commonly used and we teach these to students early on so the students can recognize the words quickly and easily. Ex. I'm, the, have, want, etc.
Qkids has provided a wonderful plan to teach these words to the students, I like to make sure that time is spent on this section and do as much of the activities in this section as possible. Repetition, hand gestures, and props are needed if these are to get through to your students.

End

And now you've reached the end of your lesson with Magic Book as a little quiz to the students. Now is the time to celebrate student efforts and wrap up. Giving out diamonds, stickers and face masks brings laughs to the students and yourself as laughter is contagious. Moments like these help teachers to keep going because you were able to do something meaningful in a student's road to English.
I hope you found this helpful to make your teaching world better with Qkids! And if you’re thinking of joining the Qkids family, check out their website by clicking here: http://teacher.qkids.net/ref?code=UVJDTJ My referral code is UVJDTJ!


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