I’ve started using some Jolly Phonics with Emma, and I have to say, it’s a great system. I have bought the Finger Phonics books as well as the DVD and some workbooks. Both Emma and Ben have enjoyed the DVD, and I’ve found Ben is very keen to look at the books, so is learning the sounds too.
The system teaches the sounds in the English language first rather than the alphabet names. Each sound is taught using an action to remind the children of the sound and a word as an example. The sounds are taught in an order (not alphabetical) which makes it easy for the child to start reading whole words almost right away. For example, the first book and DVD lesson cover the sounds: s a t i p n . Both the sound and the letter formation are taught a the same time.
I’m finding that E4 is finding it a little confusing because she’s learned her alphabet as the names of the letters, so an f for example is said as ef, when actually the sound made in words is ffff. I wish I’d know about this approach earlier as it would have been easier for her to learn the phonics first.
Nevertheless, we are enjoying it. It’s so exciting to watch her learn, and I can’t wait for her to enjoy the process of reading by herself.