Helping a child learn to sound out words can be difficult.Free sites like Reading Bear or Starfall are helpful.
Parents can learn a few phonics rules and tricks to sound out words to help their children sound out words while reading good books.
It takes time, patience, good books, and a little knowledge about phonics to support an early reader:
Learn these common rules and sounding out tricks to help a child sound out words:
CVC - A vowel between two consonants in a word or syllable usually has a short sound. Another vowel or a silent e will usually be necessary to make a long sound. (got, goat, can, cane) Click here and here for videos.
VC - A vowel at the beginning of a word or syllable usually has a short sound. (at, in, it, on, after, enter, under) Click here for a video.
Schwa Sound - All vowels can make the unstressed short u vowel sounds. Check out this post to learn more. Click here for a video. (Please excuse the misspelling of watermelon.)
CV - A vowel at the end of a word or syllable usually has a long sound. (he, me, she, no, go, so, before, bicycle, baker) Click here for a video.
Third Sound of a - An a followed by u, w, r, ll, or lt will usually have the short sound of o.
Y at the end of a word - The y can sound like an i or an e. The long i sound usually happens in short words. (my, why, sky, fly, shy, by) Click here for a video. The long e sound usually happens with more than one syllable words. (happy, family, monkey, party)
Sound of c - The letter c usually will have the soft sound /s/ before an e, i, or y. (cent, circle, cycle) Most other times it will have the hard sound /k/ . (cat, cut, cook)
Sound of g - The letter g usually will have the soft sound/j/ before an e, i, or y. (cage, giraffe, gym) Other times it usually has its hard sound. (go, gate, gum)
Silent e - The silent e on the end of a word makes a vowel before it have a long sound. (bike, rode, tune, rake)
Other spellings of the sound /sh/ - The letter combinations ti, si, and ci make the /sh/ sound. (motion, tension, special)
Consonant Blends - Two or three letters each make a sound but should be voiced quickly together and recognized as a group. (bl, cl, fl, pl, sc, sk, sl sm, sn, sw, scr, str, and more) Click here for a video.
Letter Combinations - Letters combine to make special sounds. (sh, ch, th, wh, ph, ee, ai, ay, ow, ou, igh, ar, or, ir, and more)