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How Games Can Build Phonemic Awareness

When your child is in Kindergarten or first grade and is struggling with phonemic awareness, it can be a very frustrating thing for parents, grandparents and caregivers. Most adults don’t remember learning how to read and put sounds together. So, it’s normal to feel lost, confused, and worried if it doesn’t connect right away for your child. 

The good news is that there is an educational enhancement program that could help to build phonemic awareness and boost Inventive IQ in your child.

If you want to encourage letter and pattern awareness in your child, a great way to do that is through MindFinity’s offline games, which take just a few minutes a day to play. For more information on MindFinity, please click here

What Is Phonemic Awareness?

Phonemic awareness is the ability to take individual sounds, focus on them, and speak them out loud. You may have noticed that you can read a word in your head, but you may have trouble pronouncing some – kids are the same way. Phonemes are combined to form syllables and words. It is how we can “sound out” words that we haven’t seen before. 

There are 44 phonemes within the English language, including letter combinations that create specific sounds – like “sh” for example. It is hard for many kids to gain phonemic awareness, but it is imperative they do. It is one of the most important skills for reading and writing, which impact all other subject areas.

Students who struggle with phonological awareness often have lower grades and require more help than their classmates. The good news is that there are games that can actually help to build that awareness, even if it doesn’t come naturally.

Play Games That Require Reading

Does your child love to play games? If so, try to introduce age-appropriate games that require them to read more. For example, old-fashioned board games like Scrabble Jr., Monopoly Jr., and Candyland require reading skills. You may have to help them the first few times, but they will start to remember certain words and phrases.

Some video games can also help to increase phonemic awareness as well. When words flash across the screen, particularly if they are also said out loud, children can better visualize the individual parts of the word and the overall sound they make.

Patterns Are Imperative

The key to phonological awareness is pattern recognition. Any game that helps your child learn about patterns and how they fit together will be beneficial to phonemic awareness. Of course, some games are better than others. Any game that requires building words, stories, or something tangible will be more helpful than games that just require counting.

Talking Is Helpful

Thanks to technology, people are talking less out loud than they used to, which means that children are actually hearing fewer words spoken out loud. Just taking the time to sit with your kids and talk to them can help to build up phonemic awareness. When you play games, try to keep up with the conversation, just so they hear more words.

Look For Card Games and Word Games

Gone are the days when the only word game options out there are Scrabble and maybe Scattergories. Now, there are plenty of games for children of all ages that focus on building words, wordplay, and more. Even if the game doesn’t focus on reading, anything that uses words will help to increase phonemic awareness, build vocabulary, and improve speech.

Interested In Learning More About MindFinity?

Join Mindfinity today, and see how playing daily games can transform your child’s mind into that of a multi-talented polymath thinker. Your membership includes: unlimited access to the videos from Opher’s Toronto Parent Workshop where he teaches you the methodology, and new educational activities to play each week in their Games of Genius Program.