Most parents with children at school would not have learnt to read and spell using the phonics approach. In recent years it has been the consensus that teaching children phonics helps them learn how to read and spell in a systematic way—to enable them to crack the code that English is! Phonics is a way of linking sounds to the letters that represent them. Children work from decoding what sound each letter makes, through to blending sounds together and then using them to read and spell longer and longer words.
The Oxford Reading Tree published the Oxford Phonics Spelling Dictionary to help children learn to read. Unlike a regular dictionary ordered from A to Z, this dictionary is ordered based on sounds rather than letters. It starts with the earliest sounds children use (s, a, p) and ends with more complex vowel blends. With 4,000 words ordered by sounds and spellings and linked to the Alphabetic Code Chart, it makes preparing for the phonics screening check simple and fun.
The app released this summer, Phonics Spelling Dictionary, uses the tried and tested content from the original book but has the advantage of allowing the child to hear each word with just a tap, to search for words via speech and to save additional words that are not in the dictionary.
Featured by Apple in the week of its release, Phonics Spelling Dictionary is the first in a series of apps that will help children with reading and spelling. The apps all share the motivating feature of allowing a child to collect stickers and certificates to encourage practice. Graded spelling tests enable parents and children work to improve spelling skills. My Words lets children save words they want to use for creative writing or for individual practice.
Parents can find useful tips and strategies related to using the phonics approach within the app to help them get the most from the dictionary with their children.
Find out more about the app here: therapy-box.co.uk
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