Phonemic awareness is a building block for literacy. Phonemic awareness, or a child’s ability to manipulate sounds to change word meaning, make new words, or even segment and then blend sounds together to make words, are all important skills when children are learning to read. Parents can practice the skills below with their children, adding onto previous knowledge while increasing complexity. As with any skills, it is important that children have a strong phonemic awareness foundation to aid in reading and ultimately writing, too!
Building Phonemic Awareness Skills By Age:
|Age||Skills Acquired During Year|
|3 years||· Begin to familiarize children with nursery rhymes· Stress alliteration (e.g., “big boat” or “many mumbling mice”)
· Identify words that rhyme (e.g., snake/cake)
|4 years||· Child can begin to segment sentences into words· Children start to break down multisyllabic words (e.g., “El-i-an-a”)
· Children generate rhyming words
|5 years||· Notes words that do not rhyme within a given group· Blends sounds together|
|6 years||· Blends sounds together to create words (e.g., /p/ /a/ /t/, pat)· Segments sounds to identify parts of words
· Enjoys creating multiple rhymes
|7 years||· Begins to spell phonetically· Counts sounds in words|
|8 years||· Moves sounds to create new words (e.g., “tar” turns to “art”)|
The above ages highlight typical skill mastery. As with most skills, there are varying ranges of development. Parents should incorporate phonemic awareness activities into usual book reading, and have fun talking about sounds and words!
NSPT offers services in Bucktown, Evanston, Highland Park, Lincolnwood, Glenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!
Reference: Goldsworthy (2003); Justice (2006); Naremore, Densmore, & Harman (2001).