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Part 1 – Introduction of 12 new letter sounds

The next 12 letter sounds are introduced. The children are taught that digraphs represent two sounds. They also learn to use the technique ‘if one way doesn’t work try the other’ when blending words with letter sounds that have more than one way of being pronounced.

Step 4

 

Part 1: Introducing six alternative spellings

 

In Steps 1 to 3, the children are taught the 42 letter sounds, which represent one way of writing the main sounds of English. In Step 4 the children begin to understand that some sounds have more than one way of being written: these are known as the alternative spellings. The aim is for every child to:

 

  • learn six of these new alternative spellings, and revise the previous 42 letter sounds,
  • blend words that use the six new alternative spellings, and the previous letter sounds,
  • write words from dictation that use the six new alternative spellings and the previous letter sounds,
  • learn to read and spell 20 new tricky words,
  • read sentences that use the six new alternative spellings and some new tricky words,
  • write sentences from dictation that use the new tricky words,
  • continue to read and enjoy more decodable books,
  • and write independently, if that is the preferred option.

 

The first six alternative spellings are:

y as /ee/         a_e            e_e            i_e          o_e           u_e

(happy)        (lake)      (theme)      (time)      (hope)       (tube)

 

The children have so far been taught that ‹y› has a /y/ sound, as in the word yes.  As a consonant, ‹y› usually comes at the beginning of a word, but it is never found at the end of a word. Now the children need to know that when the letter ‹y› comes at the end of a slightly longer word, it usually has an /ee/ sound, as in these words: puppy, nanny and story.

 

The children should blend such words in the usual way [demonstration]. They will quickly realise that the letter sound will not be /y/ because the ‹y› is at the end of the word and not at the beginning. It should be noted that in some accents the sound is closer to an /i/ sound [demonstration]. Technically, the sound is neither /i/ nor /ee/ but comes somewhere between these two sounds. It does not cause problems, however. If you are in an area that pronounces it more like an /i/, teach that to the children. For convenience, we keep to the /ee/ sound on this website.

 

  • Part 2 – Tricky words

    Blending and segmenting words continue to be the main focus. Twenty tricky words are…

  • Part 3 – Capital letters and decodable readers

    Capital letters are introduced, which includes teaching their sounds and how to form…

  • Part 4 – Helpful hints

    More helpful hints are provided, such as silent blending, long vowels, letter names…

  • Step 3 - Letter Sounds

    The next 12 letter sounds taught in Step 3 are provided. They can be used as flash cards to help the children remember the sounds linked to the letters or for word building.

  • Step 3 - Letter Sounds - print letters

    The next 12 letter sounds taught in Step 3 are provided. They can be used as flash cards to help the children remember the sounds linked to the letters or for word building.

  • Step 3 - Letter Formation - b&w

    On these sheets the children are able to practise forming the next 12 letters correctly by following the dots.

  • Step 3 - Letter Formation - colour

    On these sheets the children are able to practise forming the next 12 letters correctly by following the dots.

  • Step 3 - Letter Formation - bw - roint letters

    On these sheets the children are able to practice forming the next 12 letters correctly by following the dots.

  • Step 3 - Letter Formation - color - print letters

    On these sheets the children are able to practice forming the next 12 letters correctly by following the dots.

  • Step 3 - Word Bank

    The words from the Word Bank can be printed on coloured card, cut up and used for blending practice. As each new letter sound is taught then more words become available for blending.

  • Step 3 - Word Bank - print letters

    The words from the Word Bank can be printed on colored card, cut up and used for blending practice. As each new letter sound is taught then more words become available for blending.

  • Step 3 - Phrases - b&w

    The Step 3 phrases can be printed on card, cut up and used for reading practice. They are slightly more challenging than reading single words. It helps to prepare the children for reading sentences.

  • Step 3 - Phrases - colour

    The Step 3 phrases can be printed on card, cut up and used for reading practice. They are slightly more challenging than reading single words. It helps to prepare the children for reading sentences.

  • Step 3 - Phrases - b&w - print letters

    The Step 3 phrases can be printed on card, cut up and used for reading practice. They are slightly more challenging than reading single words. It helps to prepare the children for reading sentences.

  • Step 3 - Phrases - color - print letters

    The Step 3 phrases can be printed on card, cut up and used for reading practice. They are slightly more challenging than reading single words. It helps to prepare the children for reading sentences.

  • Step 3 - Letter Sounds

    The next 12 letter sounds taught in Step 3 are provided. They can be used as flash cards to help the children remember the sounds linked to the letters or for word building.

  • Step 3 - Letter Sounds - print letters

    The next 12 letter sounds taught in Step 3 are provided. They can be used as flash cards to help the children remember the sounds linked to the letters or for word building.

  • Step 3 - Letter Formation - b&w

    On these sheets the children are able to practise forming the next 12 letters correctly by following the dots.

  • Step 3 - Letter Formation - colour

    On these sheets the children are able to practise forming the next 12 letters correctly by following the dots.

  • Step 3 - Letter Formation - bw - roint letters

    On these sheets the children are able to practice forming the next 12 letters correctly by following the dots.

  • Step 3 - Letter Formation - color - print letters

    On these sheets the children are able to practice forming the next 12 letters correctly by following the dots.

  • Step 3 - Word Bank

    The words from the Word Bank can be printed on coloured card, cut up and used for blending practice. As each new letter sound is taught then more words become available for blending.

  • Step 3 - Word Bank - print letters

    The words from the Word Bank can be printed on colored card, cut up and used for blending practice. As each new letter sound is taught then more words become available for blending.

  • Step 3 - Phrases - b&w

    The Step 3 phrases can be printed on card, cut up and used for reading practice. They are slightly more challenging than reading single words. It helps to prepare the children for reading sentences.

  • Step 3 - Phrases - colour

    The Step 3 phrases can be printed on card, cut up and used for reading practice. They are slightly more challenging than reading single words. It helps to prepare the children for reading sentences.

  • Step 3 - Phrases - b&w - print letters

    The Step 3 phrases can be printed on card, cut up and used for reading practice. They are slightly more challenging than reading single words. It helps to prepare the children for reading sentences.

  • Step 3 - Phrases - color - print letters

    The Step 3 phrases can be printed on card, cut up and used for reading practice. They are slightly more challenging than reading single words. It helps to prepare the children for reading sentences.

  • Step 3 - Tricky Words - reading - b&w

    Tricky Words are frequently used words that either use alternative spellings that have not been taught yet or they are irregular. They can be blended but give the wrong pronunciation. The children have to remember the correct pronunciation and learn the unusual letter-sound correspondences.

  • Step 3 - Tricky Words - reading - colour

    Tricky Words are frequently used words that either use alternative spellings that have not been taught yet or they are irregular. They can be blended but give the wrong pronunciation. The children have to remember the correct pronunciation and learn the unusual letter-sound correspondences.

  • Step 3 - Tricky Words - reading - b&w - print letters

    Tricky Words are frequently used words that either use alternative spellings that have not been taught yet or they are irregular. They can be blended but give the wrong pronunciation. The children have to remember the correct pronunciation and learn the unusual letter-sound correspondences.

  • Step 3 - Tricky Words - reading - color - print letters

    Tricky Words are frequently used words that either use alternative spellings that have not been taught yet or they are irregular. They can be blended but give the wrong pronunciation. The children have to remember the correct pronunciation and learn the unusual letter-sound correspondences.

  • Step 3 - Tricky Words - writing - b&w

    Tricky Words are frequently used words that either use alternative spellings that have not been taught yet or they are irregular. The children have to learn the awkward part for spelling. These sheets allow the children to practise writing the tricky words, using the Look, Cover, Write & Check method.

  • Step 3 - Tricky Words - writing - colour

    Tricky Words are frequently used words that either use alternative spellings that have not been taught yet or they are irregular. The children have to learn the awkward part for spelling. These sheets allow the children to practise writing the tricky words, using the Look, Cover, Write & Check method.

  • Step 3 - Tricky Words - writing - b&w - print letters

    Tricky Words are frequently used words that either use alternative spellings that have not been taught yet or they are irregular. The children have to learn the awkward part for spelling. These sheets allow the children to practise writing the tricky words, using the Look, Cover, Write & Check method.

  • Step 3 - Tricky Words - writing - color - print letters

    Tricky Words are frequently used words that either use alternative spellings that have not been taught yet or they are irregular. The children have to learn the awkward part for spelling. These sheets allow the children to practise writing the tricky words, using the Look, Cover, Write & Check method.

  • Step 3 - Question Sentences

    It is important to give children reading material that they can decode for themselves. Often they feel that books are too hard for them. These Question Sentences can help to fill the gap. They are sometimes amusing and provide another source of reading practice.

  • Step 3 - Question Sentences - print letters

    It is important to give children reading material that they can decode for themselves. Often they feel that books are too hard for them. These Question Sentences can help to fill the gap. They are sometimes amusing and provide another source of reading practice.

  • Step 3 - Sentences

    These sentences use the 42 letter sounds and tricky words 1-20. They provide more reading practice. Use in a similar way to the Question Sentences.

  • Step 3 - Sentences - print letters

    These sentences use the 42 letter sounds and tricky words 1-20. They provide more reading practice. Use in a similar way to the Question Sentences.

  • Step 3 - Dictation Words - b&w

    These words have been carefully selected. The children should be able to spell the dictated words correctly by listening for the sounds in the words and writing letters to represent the sounds. The words build up progressively until all 12 letter sounds are used.

  • Step 3 - Dictation Words - colour

    These words have been carefully selected. The children should be able to spell the dictated words correctly by listening for the sounds in the words and writing letters to represent the sounds. The words build up progressively until all 12 letter sounds are used.

  • Step 3 - Dictation Words - b&w - print letters

    These words have been carefully selected. The children should be able to spell the dictated words correctly by listening for the sounds in the words and writing letters to represent the sounds. The words build up progressively until all 12 letter sounds are used.

  • Step 3 - Dictation Words - color - print letters

    These words have been carefully selected. The children should be able to spell the dictated words correctly by listening for the sounds in the words and writing letters to represent the sounds. The words build up progressively until all 12 letter sounds are used.

  • Step 3 - Dictation Sentences

    These sentences use the 42 letter sounds and tricky words 1 - 20. The children write the sentences from dictation either in the classroom or at home.