How to Teach Phonics Step by Step

Is your 1st grader ready to start reading? If your first grade student knows their letters and the sounds they make, they are ready to dive into phonics to learn all those tricky english rules. But it doesn’t have to be hard! We have lots of free phonics worksheets and fun phonics activities to make it easy! Here is how to teach phonics step by step with your grade 1 child.

Is your 1st grader ready to start reading? If your first grade student knows their letters and the sounds they make, they are ready to dive into phonics to learn all those tricky english rules. But it doesn't have to be hard! We have lots of free phonics worksheets and fun phonics activities to make it easy! Here is how to teach phonics step by step with your grade 1 child.

How to Teach Phonics Step by Step

Make sure you’ve read how to teach reading first to make sure your child is ready to read, knows their letters, and can demonstrate the sound letters make. Most, but no all children will start to be able to read simple words by the end of Kindergarten. Once they have that solid foundation, it is time to dive into how to teach phonics step by step! Students alreayd know you combine letters to make words, but it is time to give them the skills to sound out harder, more complex words and how to spell them! Along the way we will learn about vowel teams and English grammar rules plus sight words too.  Ready to learn how to teach phonics? Kids will be reading and spelling all on their own before you know it!

👉 If you haven’t read our How to Teach Reading article, you should start there to learn when kids are ready to read, how to teach alphabet letters, learning beginning sounds, CVC words, word families, sight words, and more!

Vowel Activities

You have probably already talked about vowels, but let’s start by reminding kids that their are two different kinds of letters – consonants and vowels. Every word needs a vowel, they are the sticky glue that hold the consonants together to make words. English vowels are a, e, i, o, u, and sometimes y. Each of these letters have a long sound where they say their name and a short sound. This leap frog talking words factory video was helpful for kids learning their vowels as were these activities:

Vowel Teams

Now that they know the basic vowels they are ready to learn about how vowels work together in vowel teams to make very different sounds wit their own set of fules. Here are the common vowel teams and hands-on, free printable vowel team activities to practice!

Read to Kids

Reading Simple Words

Your child probabaly already learned how to start making words by putting together simple CVC Words, rhyming words, and word families. These are all great for building a sense of how words are formed, how to sound out words, and gives your students a way to decode written language.You can review these skills with these fun phonics activities for kindergarten and grade 1! See CVC Words Activities

For kids learning to read and write they need lots of practice with simple CVC words and word families to learn to recognize patterns in words. These it word family worksheets are a great way to work on the it word family. This no-prep it word family activities use FREE printables for pre-k, kindergarten, and first graders!  If you are working on teaching your kindergartner to read, you will love these free printable word family worksheets. Using these ad word family worksheets allows kindergartners to start reading simple words with the same ending pattern. These ad family worksheets are perfect for Kindergarten students learning phonics to sound out words to begin reading! Help preschool, pre-k, kindergarten and first graders learn to read and write they need lots of practice with simple CVC words and word families to learn to recognize patterns in words. These ed word family worksheets are a great way to work on the ed word family. This no-prep, FREE printable ed word family activities make learning fun! If you are working on teaching your pre-k, kindergarten, or first grader how to read, you will love these free printable word family worksheets. Using these ab word family worksheets allows kindergartners, preschoolers, and grade 1 students to start reading simple words with the same ending pattern. These ab family worksheets are perfect for learning phonics to sound out words to begin reading! Simply print the ab family words with pictures page and you are ready to play and learn!

Word Family Worksheets

Focus on practicing individual word families with these free printable worksheet packs!

If you're a Kindergarten teacher, you know that teaching reading can be challenging. But fortunately, there are many tools and resources available to help. One of our favorite techniques is teaching word families for Kindergarten. In this post about word families kindergarten, we'll give you the scoop on what word families are and why they are essential. We'll explore how to use word families to teach reading in Kindergarten and give you lots of word families printables, FREE word families worksheets, and of course fun word families activities to get you started.   These word family sliders are a fun way for preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, and first grade students to work on their fine motor skills while gaining confidence reading. Practice reading word famlies for kindergarten with this set of 20 word family printables! Each one has a different theme and words on a different word family for kids! Simply print word family worksheets pdf file to print in color or blackline and have fun with this engaging word family activity. cooking up rhymes do a dot printables Turkey Word Family Activity

Word family activities

Rhyming words activities

Sight Words

As I’ve mentioned before, rule breaker sight words don’t follow typical phonics rules to sound out so it is extrememely helpful to memorize these words as they make up about 50% of the text that students read. Continue reviewing previously learned sight words and work on the next list of sight words. You can see the sight words list here and lots of fun sight words activities and games here.

Learn how to teach phonics so your child can read and spell English with lots of free printable phonics worksheets, games, and reading activities too

How to Teach Phonics

Once students know the letter sounds, vowels, and have worked with blending CVC words and noticing patterns with rhyming word familes,  it is time to learn some phonics rules to decifer some of the more unusual patterns words can follow in the english language. Let’s start with blends, Children will learn to sound out the two letters to make a blend that will be commonly found at the beginning or end of the word.

Blends

Blends are two or more consonants that BLEND together but each sound can still be heard. For instance, the words “skirt” and “clock” start with the blends SK and CL. And because all the technical terms are confusing, the term cluster refers to the written form and the term blend refers to the spoken form.

Digraphs

Digraphs are two letters that make just one sound (phoneme). CH in the word “chair” and PH in the word “phone” are both examples of digraphs.

Trigraphs

Trigraphs make a single sound that is represented by three letters.  For example: In the word ‘match’, the three letters ‘tch’ at the end make only one sound.

Dipthongs

A diphthong is a sound formed by combining two vowels in a single syllable. The sound begins as one vowel sound and moves towards another. The two most common diphthongs in the English language are the letter combination “oy”/“oi”, as in “boy” or “coin”, and “ow”/ “ou”, as in “cloud” or “cow

teaching phonics checklist

Year 1 English Worksheets

The above resources are great for adding in extra practice along with your language arts program. If you are piecing together your own curriculum you may want to watch some you tube videos teaching the different sounds or print off the table of contents to a lanauge arts curriculum to check off things as you learn them. Now that you have all the resources you need for first grade, you will be amazed at how their reading skills and spelling improve.

You can print our teaching phonics checlist HERE!

English grammar for class 1

There are various other skills children will need to learn as part of a complete homeschool language arts program. Again, your child can progress through these at their pace, but typically they learn these in their grade 1 English language arts curriculum. Here are the concepts they will learn and helpful free resources for practicing that new phonics skill.

Spelling Practice

If you don’t have a seperate spelling curriculum, I suggest picking 20 or so spelling words a week for your child to work on from the phonics sound you are working on. So if you are working on ending blends – pick words with common ending blends to reinforce the concept. In addition, I always pick 5-10 spelling words my students are missing habitually from their daily writing. You can find free printable spelling tests , hands-on  spelling practice that work with any list, and all our spelling activities.

Writing Prompts

Having children practice writing daily is important for early learners. They dont’ have to spell everything correctly, but they need to practice forming their ideas, making sentences, spelling, etc. You can find lots of free printable writing prompts to easily add to your lessons here. Their are writing prompts based on holidays, seasons, monthly guides, story starters, and more!

read books with your kids at least 30 minutes a day

Reading

Continuing to read good quality books with complex story lines and good vocabulary is essential for developing not only reading and writing skills, but proper use of the English language. Here are some resources to help you out

Reading Comprehension

Book Lists

Is your 1st grader ready to start reading? If your first grade student knows their letters and the sounds they make, they are ready to dive into phonics to learn all those tricky english rules. But it doesn't have to be hard! We have lots of free phonics worksheets and fun phonics activities to make it easy! Here is how to teach phonics step by step with your grade 1 child.