Phonics – Phase 1

More information on each phonics phase, including sound clips, can be found by clicking here:

Intro – Phase 1Phase 2Phase 3Phase 4Phase 5


This paves the way for systematic phonics learning, and usually starts in nursery or playgroup.
Teachers plan activities that will help children to listen attentively to sounds around them such as the sounds of their toys, animals or the sound of spoken language. Teachers teach a wide range of nursery rhymes and songs. They read books to and with the children. This helps to increase the number of words that they know, their vocabulary, and helps them to talk confidently about books.

Ways to support your child at home:

  • Play ‘What do we have in here?’ Put some toys or objects in a bag and pull one out at a time. Emphasise the first sound of the toy/ object by repeating it- e.g. ‘ccccc- car’, ‘bbbb- box’, ‘ch ch ch- chip’
    Teach alliteration. Say ‘A tall tin of tomatoes!’ , ‘A lovely little lemon’.
    Sing nursery rhymes and songs together.
    Read stories together.
    Playing with sounds- help children to match sounds with animals.

Often you may hear you child talking about ‘sound- talk’, this is when the Teacher breaks down the sounds in the words for reading and spelling.

The Teacher shows the children how to do this- c-a-t =cat. The sounds (phonemes) are spoken aloud, in order, all through the word. This is called blending- it is an important skill for reading.

They will also learn to do this the other way around- cat= c-a-t. The whole word is spoken aloud, and then broken up into it’s sounds (phonemes) in order, all through the word. This is called segmenting- it is an important skill for spelling.

At this stage this is all oral (spoken), your child will not be expected to match the letter to the sound. The emphasis is on helping children to hear the separate sounds in words and to create spoken sounds.

Ways to support your child at home- Sound Talking:

  • Find real objects around your home which have three phonemes (sounds) and practise ‘sound talk’- first just let them listen, then see if they will join in, e.g.
    ‘I spy a c-u-p- cup’
    ‘Simon says put your hands on your h-ea-d- head’

More information on each phonics phase, including sound clips, can be found by clicking here:

Intro – Phase 1Phase 2Phase 3Phase 4Phase 5

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Site last updated May 24, 2019 @ 2:24 pm; This content last updated November 14, 2016 @ 11:11 am