When I attended school there was a big push for whole language instruction and very little emphasis was placed on phonics. Now in education the pendulum has swung the other way and we are seeing that phonics instruction is crucial, not only in reading but spelling as well. The English language with all its rules is a tricky one to teach, especially in the areas of phonics. BBC Schools has a great site to help teach and provide reinforcement with all of these tricky phonics patterns.
BBC Words and Pictures is an interactive site that offers many resources in phonics and reading development. Teachers can use this site to initiate lessons and provide extra practice for their struggling readers. You can also find resources parents can use at home. The site offers numerous interactive activities, working with phonemes, consonant vowel consonant patterns, consonant clusters, long vowel patterns, and high frequency words. With each activity, a colorful character with a charming British accent gives students the directions needed to engage them in the activity. The site also makes the proper phonetic sounds for the student. This additional aspect of the site makes it valuable to your ESL learners as well as your non-reading students.
The teacher and parent resource sections are full of printables that can provide students with additional practice. BBC Words and Pictures also offers curriculum relevance to help correlate these activities with your learning objectives. As teachers, let’s make sure our early readers get the phonics foundation needed to become life long readers and proficient spellers.-MONIQUE ST.LOUIS