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Phonemic Awareness & Phonics

The intervention guides and materials below are targeted to meet student needs in the areas of phonemic awareness and phonics.

Picture Card Sorts

Objective: Students will build accuracy and master letter names and sounds and letter-sound correspondence by learning how to identify initial sounds in words through a picture sort activity
Skill(s): Letter-sound correspondence, recognize initial sounds in words
Intervention Need: Accuracy (achieve 90-95% accuracy on letter-sound correspondence tasks).
Intervention Guide: Picture Card Sort
Intervention Materials:

Letter Sound Bingo

Objective: Students will build automaticity and retention of letter sounds using a version of a "bingo" activity to practice words
Skill(s): Letter-sound correspondence, recognize initial sounds in words
Intervention Need: Automaticity (achieve 95% accuracy with automatic responses in identifying letter-sounds).
Intervention Guide: Letter Sound Bingo
Intervention Materials:

Word Boxes

Objective: Students will be able to segment and blend sounds, master letter-sound correspondence and learn how to decode and read CVC words using words boxes and the "say it and move it" approach.
Skill(s): Decoding, phoneme segmenting and blending
Intervention Need: Automaticity (95% accuracy with automatic responses in segmenting and blending sounds and decoding CVC words).
Intervention Guide: Word Boxes
Intervention Materials:

Word Mix Up

Objective: Students will become accurate in building and blending decodable words (e.g., CVC, digraphs, consonant blends, CVCe, vowel teams). Students will also increase automaticity in reading the words built each lesson.
Skill(s): Decoding, phoneme manipulation, writing and spelling words
Intervention Need: Accuracy and Automaticity (95% accuracy with automatic responses in decoding on various sets of word types, including CVC, consonant digraphs, consonant blends, CVCe words, vowel teams).
Intervention Guide: Word Mix Up
Intervention Materials:


Adams, M. J. (2001). Alphabetic anxiety and explicit, systematic phonics instruction: A cognitive science
perspective. In S. B. Neuman & D. K. Dickinson (Eds.), Handbook of early literacy research (pp. 66-80). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Adams, M. J. (1990). Beginning to read: Learning and thinking about print. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Ball, E. W., & Blachman B. A. (1988). Phoneme segmentation training: Effect on reading readiness. Annals of
Dyslexia, 38, 208-225.

Ball, E. W. & Blachman, B. A. (1991). Does phoneme awareness training in kindergarten make a difference in early
word recognition and developmental spelling? Reading Research Quarterly, 26, 49-66.

Blachman, B. (1989). Phonological awareness and word recognition: Assessment and intervention. In A. G. Kamhi &
H. W. Catts (eds.), Reading disabilities: A developmental language perspective (pp. 133-158). Boston:
College-Hill Press.

Blachman, B. A., Ball, E. W., Black, E. S., & Tangel, D. M. (1994). Kindergarten teachers develop phoneme
awareness in low-income, inner-city classrooms. Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal, 6, 1-18.

Blachman, B. A., Tangel, D. M., Ball, E. W., Black, R., & McGraw, C. K. (1999). Developing phonological awareness
and word recognition skills: A two-year intervention with low-income, inner-city children. Reading and
Writing: An interdisciplinary Journal, 11, 239-273.

Bradley, L. (1988). Making connections in learning to read and spell. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 2, 3-18.

Bradley, L., & Bryant, P. (1983). Categorizing sounds and learning to read: A causal connection. Nature, 30, 419-

Chard, D. J. & Osborn, J. (1999). Phonics and word recognition in early reading programs: Guidelines for
accessibility. Learning Disabilities Research & Practice, 14, 107-117.

Ehri, L., Deffner, N., & Wilce, L. (1984). Pictorial mnemonics for phonics. Journal of Educational Psychology, 76,

Ehri, L. C., & Nunes, S. R. (2002). The role of phonemic awareness in learning to read. What research has to say
about reading instruction, 3, 110-139.

Ehri, L., Nunes, S., Willows, D., Schuster, B. V., Yaghoub-Zadeh, Z., & Shanahan, T. (2001). Phonemic awareness
instruction helps children learn to read: Evidence from the national reading panel’s meta-analysis. Reading Research Quarterly, 36, 250-287.

Elkonin, D.B. (1973). U.S.S.R. In J. Downing (ed.), Comparative reading (pp. 551-580).New York: MacMillan.
Graaff, S., Bosman, A. M. T., Hasselman, F., & Verhoeven, L. (2009). Benefits of systematic phonics. Scientific
Studies of Reading, 13, 318–333.

Joseph, L. (1998/1999). Word boxes help children with learning disabilities identify and spellwords. The Reading
Teacher, 52, 348-356.

Joseph, L. M. (2000). Developing first graders' phonemic awareness, word identification, and spelling: A
comparison of two contemporary phonic instructional approaches. Reading Research and Instruction, 39, 160-169.

Joseph, L. M. (2002). Helping children link sound to print: Phonics procedures for small-group or whole-class
settings. Intervention in School and Clinic, 37, 217-221.

Keesey, S., Konrad, M., & Joseph, L. M. (2015). Word boxes improve phonemic awareness, letter-sound
correspondences, and spelling skills of kindergartners at risk of reading failure. Remedial and Special Education, 36, 167–180.

Kozminsky, L., & Kozminsky, E. (1995). The effects of early phonological awareness training on reading success.
Learning & Instruction, 5, 187-201.

Lewkowicz, N. (1980). Phonemic awareness training: What to teach and how to teach it. Journal of Educational
Psychology, 72, 686-700.

Liberman, I. Y., Shankweiler, D., Blachman, B. A., Camp, L. & Werfelman, M. (1980). Stepstowards literacy. In P.
Levinson & C. Sloan (eds.), Auditory processing and language: Clinical and research perspectives (pp. 189-215). New York: Grune & Stratton.

McCandliss, B., Beck, l. L., Sandak R., & Perfetti, C. (2003). Focusing attention on decoding skills for children with
poor reading skills: Design and preliminary tests of the word building intervention. Scientific Studies of Reading, 7, 75-104.

Savage, R. (2005). Phoneme manipulation not onset-rime manipulation is a unique predictor of reading. Journal of
Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 46, 1297-1308.

Stahl, S. A., & Murray, B. A. (1994). Defining phonological awareness and its relationship to early reading. Journal
of Educational Psychology, 86, 221.

Torgesen, J. K. (1998). Catch them before they fall. American Educator, 22, 32-41.

Vandervelden, M., & Siegel, L. (1997). Teaching phonological processing skills in early literacy: A developmental
approach. Learning Disability Quarterly, 20, 63-81.

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Last modified on November 27, 2013.