All Phonics and Decoding articles

By: Five From Five

Decodable books play an important role in phonics instruction and building confidence in young readers. Learn more about decodable books, how they differ from predictable texts, and how to select high-quality texts that align with the scope and sequence of your phonics program.

By: The Reading League

Decodable text is a type of text used in beginning reading instruction. Decodable texts are carefully sequenced to progressively incorporate words that are consistent with the letter–sound relationships that have been taught to the new reader. This list of links, compiled by The Reading League, includes decodable text sources for students in grades K-2, 3-8, teens, and all ages.

By: Linda Farrell, Reading Rockets

This list can be used to help young readers practice multisyllable words with short vowel sounds and schwa sounds.

By: Student Achievement Partners

Improve instruction and help all students achieve at high levels by making these research-based adjustments to your balanced literacy program. This guidance outlines some of the most common challenges of a balanced literacy model, how they can impede students’ learning, and how you can adapt your reading program to better serve students.

By: Linda Farrell

All kindergarten, first-grade, and second-grade teachers — as well as reading interventionists — should teach students to keep their eyes on the words on the page so that they do not have to later struggle with breaking a habit that hampers effective, efficient reading.

By: Linda Farrell

An almost universal habit that struggling readers exhibit is looking up from the words when reading. Learn the three primary reasons why students look up as they read, and then find out how to respond to each case in the most effective way. 

By: Linda Farrell, Michael Hunter, Tina Osenga

Integrating high-frequency words into phonics lessons allows students to make sense of spelling patterns for these words. To do this, high-frequency words need to be categorized according to whether they are spelled entirely regularly or not. This article describes how to “rethink” teaching of high-frequency words.

By: Linda Farrell, Michael Hunter, Marcia Davidson, Tina Osenga

The Simple View of Reading is a formula demonstrating the widely accepted view that reading has two basic components: word recognition (decoding) and language comprehension. Research studies show that a student’s reading comprehension score can be predicted if decoding skills and language comprehension abilities are known.

By: Beverly Vicker, Indiana Resource Center for Autism

Students with ASD can have strengths or challenges in either word recognition and language comprehension that will impact reading comprehension. It is important to assess, monitor, and track the word recognition or decoding skills and language comprehension skills as you evaluate reading comprehension.

By: International Literacy Association

This ILA brief explains the basics of phonics for parents, offering guidance on phonics for emerging readers, phonological awareness, word study, approaches to teaching phonics, and teaching English learners.

By: Center for Effective Reading Instruction, International Dyslexia Association

Teaching experience supports a multi-sensory instruction approach in the early grades to improve phonemic awareness, phonics, and reading comprehension skills. Multi-sensory instruction combines listening, speaking, reading, and a tactile or kinesthetic activity. 

By: Reading Rockets

Just a few pages from your newspaper can be turned into lots of early learning activities. Here you'll find "letters and words" activities for the youngest, plus fun writing prompts and tips on how to read and analyze the news for older kids.

By: Louisa Moats, Reading Rockets

Get the basics on guidelines for decoding instruction, speech sounds in English, and why children confuse certain speech sounds.

By: Reading Rockets

Letters are all around us! Here are some ideas on how to use print found in your everyday environment to help develop your child's reading skills.

By: PBS KIDS Raising Readers
Everyday activities are a natural and effective way to begin teaching your young child about letters and words. Download and print these colorful "take-along" activities the next time you go to the grocery store or farmer's market. Turn your regular trip into a reading adventure!
By: Reading Rockets

A simple trip to the grocery store can turn into a real learning experience for your preschooler. Below are some easy ways to build literacy and math skills while getting your shopping done at the same time!

By: Louisa Moats, Carol Tolman

Although we may not be aware of it, we do not skip over words, read print selectively, or recognize words by sampling a few letters of the print, as whole language theorists proposed in the 1970s. Reading is accomplished with letter-by-letter processing of the word.

By: Louisa Moats, Carol Tolman

Learn the six types of syllables found in English orthography, why it's important to teach syllables, and the sequence in which students learn about both spoken and written syllables.

By: Reading Rockets

Focus on reading readiness and enjoy winter holidays at the same time with these simple activities you can incorporate into your preschooler's daily routine.

By: Reading Rockets

As a parent of a beginning reader, it's important to support your child's reading efforts in a positive way and help them along the reading path. Here's a little information about beginning readers, and a few pointers to keep in mind.

By: Reading Rockets

Even the youngest child is somewhere on the path to becoming a reader. As a parent, it's important to support your child's efforts in a positive way and help him or her along the reading path. Here's a little information about emergent readers, and a few pointers to keep in mind.

By: National Institute for Literacy

The goal of phonics instruction is to help children learn the alphabetic principle — the idea that letters represent the sounds of spoken language — and that there is an organized, logical, and predictable relationship between written letters and spoken sounds.

By: National Institute for Literacy

Find out what the scientific research says about effective phonics instruction. It begins with instruction that is systematic and explicit.

By: Sebastian Wren

This article illustrates the difference between being able to decode words on a page and being able to derive meaning from the words and the concepts they are trying to convey.

By: Reading Rockets

An informal assessment of phonic elements, including what the assessment measures, when is should be assessed, examples of questions, and the age or grade at which the assessment should be mastered.

By: Reading Rockets

An informal assessment of letter/sound recognition, including what the assessment measures, when is should be assessed, examples of questions, and the age or grade at which the assessment should be mastered.

By: Between the Lions

Creating a word family chart with the whole class or a small group builds phonemic awareness, a key to success in reading. Students will see how words look alike at the end if they sound alike at the end — a valuable discovery about our alphabetic writing system. They'll also see that one little chunk (in this case "-an") can unlock lots of words!

By: Beth Antunez

Find out how teachers can play to the strengths and shore up the weaknesses of English Language Learners in each of the Reading First content areas.

By: Sebastian Wren
Who can understand all the jargon that's being tossed around in education these days? Consider all the similar terms that have to do with the sounds of spoken words — phonics, phonetic spelling, phoneme awareness, phonological awareness, and phonology — all of them share the same "phon" root, so they are easy to confuse, but they are definitely different, and each, in its way, is very important in reading education.
By: Texas Education Agency

Children's knowledge of letter names and shapes is a strong predictor of their success in learning to read. Knowing letter names is strongly related to children's ability to remember the forms of written words and their ability to treat words as sequences of letters.

By: Learning First Alliance
Early skills in alphabetics serve as strong predictors of reading success, while later deficits in alphabetics is the main source of reading difficulties. This article argues the importance of developing skills in alphabetics, including phonics and decoding.
By: National Reading Panel

Phonics instruction is a way of teaching reading that stresses the acquisition of letter-sound correspondences and their use in reading and spelling.

By: Bruce Murray

Thinking about the sounds in words is not natural, but it can be fun. Here are some games children can play to develop phonemic awareness, as well as a method for segmenting words that prevents children from distorting the pronunciation of the phonemes.

By: Mary Fitzsimmons
This article describes two processes that are essential to teaching beginning reading to students with learning disabilities: phonological awareness and word recognition, and provides tips for teaching these processes to students.
By: Susan Hall, Louisa Moats

Early experiences with sounds and letters help children learn to read. This article makes recommendations for teaching phonemic awareness, sound-spelling correspondences, and decoding, and includes activities for parents to support children's development of these skills.

By: National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

Children go through phases of reading development from preschool through third grade — from exploration of books to independent reading. In first grade, children begin to read simple stories and can write about a topic that is meaningful to them. Find out what parents and teachers can do to support first grade literacy skills.

By: National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

Children go through phases of reading development from preschool through third grade — from exploration of books to independent reading. In kindergarten, children develop basic concepts of print and begin to engage in and experiment with reading and writing. Find out what parents and teachers can do to support kindergarten literacy skills.

By: David J. Chard, Jean Osborn

Many teachers will be using supplemental phonics and word-recognition materials to enhance reading instruction for their students. In this article, the authors provide guidelines for determining the accessibility of these phonics and word recognition programs.

By: Texas Education Agency

As children learn some letter-sound matches and start to read, they also begin to experiment with writing. These activities can be used with children to develop their writing and spelling abilities.

By: Reading Rockets

There are several informal assessment tools for assessing various components of reading. The following are ten suggested tools for teachers to use.

By: Louisa Moats

These research-based reading strategies can build a foundation for reading success in students in third grade and beyond.

By: National Center to Improve the Tools of Educators

From decades of research about how young children can best learn to read, we know that there are core skills and cognitive processes that need to be taught. In this basic overview, you’ll find concrete strategies to help children build a solid foundation for reading.

By: G. Reid Lyon

Learning how to read requires several complex accomplishments. Read about the challenges children face as they learn how sounds are connected to print, as they develop fluency, and as they learn to construct meaning from print.

By: Susan Burns, Peg Griffin, Catherine Snow

Three main accomplishments characterize good readers. Find out what these accomplishments are, and what experiences in the early years lay the groundwork for attaining them.

By: ERIC Clearinghouse on Disabilities and Gifted Education

Early literacy activities help young children develop many skills. One of these skills is phonological awareness. Learn about phonological awareness and how parents can help children develop it.

"What an astonishing thing a book is. It's a flat object made from a tree with flexible parts on which are imprinted lots of funny dark squiggles. But one glance at it and you're inside the mind of another person ..." —

Carl Sagan