The Top 5 Phonics Games For Kids

The first step in learning to read is gaining a rote understanding of the sounds letters make alone, or in combination with other letters. In the education world, the letter/sound connection is called “phonics.” For some children, learning phonics is an easy process. Other students struggle to understand the relationship between letters and sounds, which can translate to reading and writing challenges that last a lifetime. Phonics games are an easy, fun, and interactive way for students to integrate the relationship between visual letters and sounds.

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Here are the Top 5 Phonics Games you can play with your kids, or let them play on their own, as they begin to develop lifelong reading skills.

1. Flash Cards

Learning, in its most basic form, is all about repetition. The more we are exposed to something, the more we are able to integrate it. There are all types of phonics-based flash cards on the market. Find a set that involves a theme your child is interested in. The more their learning process is based in something relevant or interesting to them, the more interested they will be. Also, make sure you get age appropriate cards.

Extra fun: Don’t take the teacher role 100% of the time. Let your child test your phonics ability. Give them the set and let them do the testing. All of us learn best when we are teaching others.

2. Sing a Song of Phonics

Kids love music, movement, and repetition. So why not use songs and movement to reinforce phonics? If you are musical and/or creative (or your child is!) you can make up phonics songs of your own. Otherwise, spend a few minutes on YouTube searching for simple phonics songs that your child can easily learn and sing. Grab some percussion toys or props that suit the words to make the “practice” as memorable as possible.

3. Computer Games

While you may bemoan the amount of time your child spends in front of a monitor or screen, technology is the wave of the learning future. There is an abundance of online phonics games your child can use to practice, or you can peruse educational software websites for more specific activities.

4. Phonics ‘Round the House

There are all kinds of ways to connect phonics to everyday living. One method is to make a bunch of letter cut outs using stencils or hand-written letters and a roll of masking tape. Have your child color the letters and review the sounds. Then let your child cut the letters out and start taping them to everyday objects around the house. D for door, R for refrigerator, a C-H for chair, etc. Leave them up for a while so s/he can review the letters sounds as s/he encounters them.

5. Bathtub Phonics

Bath time is an excellent time to learn phonics. And hey, if you have a little one who isn’t fond of bath time, the new toys/activities might be an added incentive to entice him/her into the tub. You can purchase letters for the bathtub, designed to stick to the sides when wet. Or, you can get ultra creative and buy bath crayons and a magic eraser to let your little one really create. Either way, you can sings songs or read stories together and draw the sounds you hear, identify the items in the bathroom by first letter, etc.

Reading is a lifelong skill and the earlier your child is able to feel successful and inspired, the more apt s/he is to thrive in academic settings. These phonics games are an excellent start for building a solid reading foundation.

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About the Author:

The writer of this article, Nicole, has been writing about child education for years. She thinks that phonics games for kids are a great way to help teach children to read.