In order to help your child learn to love literacy in their early years of school, it’s worthwhile spending time drawing awareness to ‘sounds’. These form the building blocks of words (both spoken and written). You can try:

  1. Playing with and talking about words

    1. What is a word? Can your child point to one in books? Which words are long? And short?

    2. Count the words as you read them in books.

    3. Clap out words in sentences.

  2. Teaching your child to rhyme

    1. Sing nursery rhymes together.

    2. Listen for rhyming words and ask your child to clap when they hear one in a nursery rhyme.

    3. Take turns making up rhyming words (cat …. hat …. mat…. sat).

  3. Breaking up words into syllables (beats)

    1. Clap and count the ‘beats’ in words (e.g., din-o-saur = 3 claps). This is great fun using family names.

    2. Decide whether words are long or short based on how many syllables there are (e.g., Which word is longer? Helicopter or train?)

    3. Practice blending the syllables together and having your child say the word (e.g., “Ba-by. What word is that?”

  4. Playing with sounds

    1. Go on sound adventures, listening to different sounds outside and asking your child to identify them (e.g., trains, birds, leaf blowers).

    2. Talk about first sounds in words (e.g., dog with a /d/ sound)

    3. Look for those things around you that start with the same sounds (e.g., I Spy)