THE ART of SOUNDING OUT

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Discussing the art of SOUNDING OUT

 

Sometimes there is debate amongst teachers as to how to SOUND OUT a word.

For example:            

do we say       sh! o! p!    says     shop       where sh!  is  SHORT and VOICED

or

do we say       shhh o! p!    says    shop    where shhh  is  CONTINUED & UNVOICED?

 

We at Fitzroy Readers are very familiar with this whole discussion about methods of sounding out.  We do not take a hard line, but include alternative approaches.  In some cases, we recommend one style for children who are learning to speak English, and another for children who can already PRONOUNCE what they are learning to READ.

When we supply our FITZROY SOUNDS package, which teaches beginners the basic sounds of the letters, we include TWO AUDIOS with the package: one using all the SHORT and VOICED style and the other using CONTINUED and UNVOICED sounds where possible.  We let teachers choose according to their preference, or according to their students’ needs.

The science of PHONETICS carefully isolates the sounds of each word.  The f!  sound is, on its own, CONTINUOUS and UNVOICED: fff.  When teaching young children who do not speak English at home, it may help to slowly sound out  fff i shhh.  This requires their close attention. Beware, fff sounds very much the same as thhh.  They need to see your face.

With native English speakers, who already know how to say fish, it’s much quicker to say f! i sh!   Much easier to hear in a big classroom.  They will never mispronounce fish.  While phonetics is the SCIENCE of speech sounds, phonics is the ART of teaching how to convert the written word to the spoken word.  *

 

P.S.  When we supply our FITZROY READERS SOFTWARE, we include (in Teacher Settings) FOUR options for the program to sound out words!

They are called TRADITIONAL, CONVENTIONAL, STRICTLY PHONETIC and THE FITZROY METHOD (the default setting).