Phonograms:

phonogram

a symbol or character, as in shorthand, that represents a word, syllable, or sound.

 

pho·no·gram  (fn-grm)

n.

A character or symbol, as in a phonetic alphabet, representing a word or phoneme in speech.


phono·gramic, phono·grammic adj.

phono·grami·cal·ly, phono·grammi·cal·ly adv.


phonogram [ˈfəʊnəˌgræm]

n

1. (Linguistics) any written symbol standing for a sound, syllable, morpheme, or word

2. (Linguistics) a sequence of written symbols having the same sound in a variety of different words, for example, ough in bought, ought, and brought

phonogramic , phonogrammic adj


 

How to Teach Phonograms Using the Montessori Small Movable Alphabet

Small movable alphabets are good word building practice tools.

The montessori small movable alphabet is a set of stiff, cut out letters. All of these letters go in a large, partitioned box. There are multiple cut outs of each letter so that a student can spell with this alphabet. The small movable alphabet can be used with many different lessons on reading and word building. This lesson is used to help children identify and begin to utilize phonograms in reading and spelling.

Difficulty: Easy

Instructions

Things Needed:

  • Two small movable alphabets in different colors
  • Phonogram picture and word card boxes
  1. Step 1

Sit at the table with the student. You should both be on the same side of the table so that you are looking at the words that you build from the same perspective.

2. Step 2

Arrange your materials. You should have both small movable alphabets within reach. The word cards should remain in the box to the side, and the picture cards should be close at your hand. Make sure that you have some space in front of the two of you to work.

3.Step 3

Build the word indicated by a picture card together. Show the picture card to the child and then show him how to build the word. The phonogram should be in one color, while the rest of the word is in the other color. For example, if you build the word “boat,” then the letters b and t will be one color, and the o and a will be another.

4.Step 4

Check your work against the word card that is in the box. If the word is spelled correctly, then move on. As the child becomes more comfortable with identifying phonograms and spelling the words, you can let her work on her own.

5.Step 5

Keep the small movable alphabets and the appropriate word boxes and cards in an accessible location. The student should be encouraged to use the lesson whenever they wish to build words with phonograms and then check them against the word cards.

How to Montessori Small Booklets to Teach Phonograms

Montessori Small Booklets to Teach Phonograms

Montessori small booklets are half-sized pamphlets that are generally handmade by either students or a teacher. Each small booklet bears a single phonogram on the front cover and contains one word on each page that uses that phonogram. For example, if the front cover says “ck,” then the words in the book should contain the phonogram “ck.” The rest of each word should be spelled phonetically. Examples of words that are appropriate for a “ck” small booklet are lock, back, racket, lick and puck.

Difficulty: Easy

Instructions

How to Use Montessori Small Booklets to Teach Phonograms

      1. Step 1

Select several small booklets. They should contain phonograms that the child has already encountered during earlier reading lessons if possible. It does not matter if the child has not been introduced directly to the phonogram, but it will help if he is familiar with at least some of the words in the booklet. If you are introducing a phonogram for the first time, you may wish to select several small booklets that are all based on the same phonogram. Most classrooms will have multiple small booklets for each phonogram.

      1. Step 2

Show the booklet to the student. Say something like, “See the letters on the front of this booklet? They make a ‘kuh’ sound. There are lots of words that use these letters to make this sound. You can find some of them in this book.” As you say this, open the book.

      1. Step 3

Read the book together. If the child is very hesitant, you may read the book to him. However, this may indicate a need to go back and practice with object boxes and word and picture cards instead of moving on to booklets that do not have pictures in them to help with reading. You will need to make this call based on your knowledge of the student. As you read each word or the student reads it to you, emphasize the sound of the phonogram. For example, if you are reading the “ck” book then make the “kuh” sound very clearly. However, be careful not to distort the word.

  1. Step 4

Encourage the student to continue reading the small booklets on her own. They should be kept in an easily accessible location where the child can reach them easily. If the student wishes, you may allow her to add more words that contain the phonogram to the back of the book or make her own word list after she reads the book to herself.

How to Teach Phonograms Using a Montessori Word List

Word lists help children associate words with the same anomalies with each other, thereby making reading phonograms easier.

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Phonograms are combinations of letters that create unique sounds that may not sound exactly like the phonetic expressions of these letter combinations. For example, the “ew” in few does not sounds like “Eh, Wuh,” as a phonetic reading would lead one to believe. Instead, it sounds more like a long “u” sound. Once a child understands phonetic reading, he needs to be introduced to phonograms so that his reading vocabulary will not be hampered by his inability to pronounce words correctly. One way to introduce and practice common phonograms is the use of Montessori word lists.

Difficulty: Easy

Instructions

Things Needed:

  • Word list packets for common phonogram groups. For example, ew, ue and words that have u in the middle and end in e all have an “oo” sound.
  1. Step 1

Have the child sit with you at a table. You should not do this lesson in a group, so you should be sitting on the same side of the table with the child and the two of you should be focused on the lesson at hand.

  1. Step 2

Show the child the cover of the word list packet. You can introduce it by saying that the same sound can be made in many different ways. For example, you might introduce the phonogram “ee” by saying, “We can make the ‘ee’ sound in lots of different ways.”

  1. Step 3

Read through the first list. You should introduce the phonograms one at a time, so only deal with the phonogram on the first list for now. If it is “ea” making an “ee” sound, then you may have words like mean, bean and lean. Tell the child, “We can make an ‘ee’ sound using ‘ea,’ just like in these words.” Have the child read through the list with the knowledge that even though the words may not phonetically look like they should have an “ee” sound, that they do. This will make the reading easier than you may expect. If you experience difficulty, you can read through the list with the child before having them read the list alone. However, consult your child’s instructor before doing this as some teachers prefer that you not assist in this manner.

  1. Step 4

Work through the other lists. In the “ee” group you will also have an “ee” list and possibly an “ie” list, depending on your school’s curriculum. With each list, repeat the same thing that you did with the first list, saying “We can make an ‘ee’ sound using ‘ie’ (for example).” Read through the list together with the child reading the words to you so that you can watch for mispronunciations.

  1. Step 5

Keep the word list packets in an accessible place. The child should be encouraged to use them on her own whenever she wishes by reading through the lists quietly and then replacing them.

How to Teach Phonograms Using Montessori Word List Packets

Word list packets contain groups of words that sound the same but, due to phonogram spellings, may appear vastly different from each other.

Montessori word list packets are lists of words–usually six to eight words make up a list–that have some type of phonogram in common. As a result, these packets contain lists of words that all sound the same but that may have very different spellings. These lists are a great way to help young readers associate words with difficult or unusual spellings with each other in order to make reading easier. Word list packets are good not only for helping students expand their reading abilities, but also for aiding them in expanding their vocabularies as they learn how to pronounce new and potentially unfamiliar sounds.

Difficulty: Easy

Instructions

Things Needed:

  • Montessori word list packets
  1. Step 1

Introduce the phonograms individually to the student. While you may have a complete set of word list packets for many phonograms, start out slow and work steadily. You should introduce each group of phonograms by saying “We can make the oo sound (for example) in lots of different ways. Here are several ways to make the oo sound.” Then show them the packet, which will have all of the ways to make the phonogram–oo in this example–on the cover. This way, the student can see the options for making the phonogram’s sound before he encounters them in words.

  1. Step 2

Read through related word lists. Word packets will have the words divided up into different phonograms that all make the same sound. For example, a word list packet for “oo” will have words like food and mood (oo) on one list, few and mew (ew) on another, and dune and rule (u-e) on another.

  1. Step 3

Review all the lists in a packet together. Once you have read through the lists individually while discussing the individual phonograms, have the student read all the words on the list. Some instructors like to stay and have the students read the words to them, while others prefer to let the students read on their own.

    1. Step 4

Move on to other phonogram word list packets. If the student is enjoying and engaged in the lesson, you can move on to other phonogram word list packets. As the child becomes more familiar with more and more packets, she will be able to practice them on her own.

5.  Step 5

Keep all phonogram word lists in an accessible location. The student should be encouraged to read through the word list packets on his own whenever he likes. This will help him practice reading and also familiarize him with phonograms as he works

 

How to Use Montessori Small Story Books to Teach Phonograms

Reading these small story books gives children a feeling of accomplishment because they are reading books on their own while helping them become more familiar with common word constructions.

Small story books are booklets designed to help students practice reading while becoming more familiar with common phonograms. You can purchase these books from school supplies stores or make your own. They generally contain a series of pictures with a simple sentence accompanying the picture that makes use of a word containing the phonogram that the book is focused on. For example, if the cover of the book says “ee,” then the sentences inside will all utilize words that contain the phonogram “ee,” such as “Bob feeds the kids.”

Difficulty: Easy

Instructions

      1. Step 1

Present the book to the child. Discuss the phonogram on the front of the book by asking them to identify it by reading it aloud to show the sound it makes.

      1. Step 2

Read the book together. As you go, the child may comment on the fact that the phonogram appears on every page or that it always makes the same sound even when it is in different words.However, you do not need to formally point it out if the student does not comment, as they will develop familiarity with the words and phonograms through repeated reading.

      1. Step 3

Work your way through several small books with different phonograms. You can present several in one lesson as long as the child appears comfortable and interested in the reading. However, if his attention starts to wander, you should stop adding material.

      1. Step 4

Encourage the student to read the books on her own. This can be done during reading time or as a regular lesson. Different Montessori classrooms divide up their days in different ways, so this will depend on your preference and how your school prefers to instruct. The books should be located in an easily accessible location, and the child should read the booklets that match the phonograms she has already learned.

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