Fun ways to reinforce GPCs

This forum has been created to provide a non-challenging environment for teachers and parents new to using synthetic phonics.
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Fun ways to reinforce GPCs

Post by Katrina »

I'm teaching my two young children, aged 4 and nearly 7, to read at home using synthetic phonics and thanks to the advice and materials provided by rrf contributors, I'm pleased to report that both are progressing well and I'm starting to feel like I know what I'm doing.

My daughter, nearly 7, has trouble remembering GPCs and benefits from regular, systematic reinforcement but I'm struggling to think of fun ways to provide the reinforcement she needs. After school everyday I get her to read her take-home reading book aloud and/or one of the decodable readers I keep at home, (depending on the quality of the school reader), but I'm sure she would benefit from some more direct and targeted reinforcement.

She's usually tired after school and learning new GPCs or even practising the old ones I have stuck to the fridge is too much to ask. I'm limited to introducing new GPCs on Sundays and school holidays - it works but progress is slow during school term. Now and again she likes to do a spelling test and I can usually set it up so that she practises easily-forgotten sounds and gets 10 out of 10 for example, out, loud, about, shout, shouting, now, brown, growl, growling etc. I would really appreciate any suggestions and ideas of fun games and activities I can do with my kids to help them learn.

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Post by JAC »

Katrina - just reading from the BRI/ARI books on a regular basis is effective, without need for games. Contact me via a pm if you would like to borrow these books from me, as I believe you are in metro WA.

Susan Godsland

Post by Susan Godsland »

Katrina, have a look at my phonic games page: ... ther_5.htm

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Debbie Hepplewhite
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Post by Debbie Hepplewhite »

Have you taken advantage of my free Alphabetic Code Overview Charts which break the code up in different ways? I particularly like the ones with all the unit colours as this literally breaks up the graphemes into memorable parts?

There are also some charts where you can colour in the graphemes learnt or introduced or 'write over' the graphemes - all these are free in my unit 1.

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Post by Katrina »

Thank you JAC, Susan and Debbie. I'll have a look at all your suggestions over the weekend - I suddenly got very busy today and yesterday.

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Post by mtyler »

Hi Katrina,

Here are two of my daughter's favorite games.

1. Honk! This is adapted from the reading program Phonics Pathways. Make 3 copies of 5-6 correspondences on 3 x 5 cards (1 grapheme per card). Make 3 copies of a silly picture on 3 x 5 cards. Choose a silly action to do when the picture comes up. My daughter always liked holding her nose and saying honk, hence the name of the game. Mix the cards up and turn them over, one by one. Say the sounds you have learned for each grapheme. If she doesn't remember just supply the sound(s), have her say them, and move on. Try and move along quickly. When one of the pictures come up, both of you do the silly action and sound. You can easily change out correspondences she has learned and add in new correspondences.

2. Sound Bingo. Adapted from the reading program Reading Reflex. I made a blank 5 -5 board on a standard sheet of paper and made multiple copies. Be sure to have a list of the correspondences you have worked on handy. Fill in a board for yourself and your daughter. Make cards with the correspondences to flip over. Have her trace over the correspondences on her board, saying the sound(s) as she writes. The first with 5 in a row wins.

Best of luck,


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Post by Maltesers »

I lay out grapheme cards face down on the floor and sing 'walk around and find a sound, find a sound, find a sound, walk around and find a sound, what sound is it? (Tune of London bridge is falling down)
Child picks up the card and reads it.