Teaching children to associate sounds of a language with a group of letters or characters, is termed as phonics. This helps them to remember spellings and improves their ability to pronounce new words. Phonics is basically the method of learning the different sounds associated with different arrangement of letters, and is represented by a set of rules. For example, one of the rules of phonics states that when a word has "g" followed by "e, i or y", it is pronounced as "j" as in geometry. Phonics is usually taught to students when they are in the first grade. So, it becomes essential to make the lessons as interesting as possible, so that they can grasp easily. This is where you can take the help of phonics games. For first grade, the games are easy and consist of simple words, just like the ones given below.
First Grade Phonics Games
Here are a few phonics games for children in the first grade. An important point here is that the sounds of the consonants, h, l, m, n, q, r, w and y, when appearing at the beginning of a word, are a little tougher to remember as compared to the other consonant sounds.
Find the Words
This can be a great classroom phonics game for kids in the first grade. The teacher or the instructor dictates words from a list and the kids are told to pick out the words beginning with a certain consonant sound. For example, you can tell your kids to identify words beginning with the consonant "b".
Pick the Picture
You can get picture cards for this one. Arrange the picture cards on the table and ask your child to pick the cards with pictures that begin or end with a particular sound. To make it slightly less simple, you can ask him to pick pictures that have the particular consonant sound somewhere in the middle of the word, and not just at the beginning or end. Let's take the example of the consonant sound "b". You can either ask your kid to pick pictures of a bird, ball, balloon, bat, bees, tub, cub, or pictures of table, rabbit, pebbles, rubber, etc. Get the picture?
Build a Word
This can also be an interesting way to introduce your child to new words. Begin with a list of simple words and dictate them. Provide your little one with some alphabets and ask him to try to make those words by paying attention to the sounds of the vowels and consonants. As your kid gets familiar with these words, gradually move to slightly difficult words and so on.
This is another great way to make your kids familiar with the rules of phonics. Create a phonics chart with columns for the most commonly used sounds and then ask your kids to listen carefully and look for these sounds in the words and write them in the columns meant for the respective sounds. This can turn into a fun activity for yourself as well as your kids.
What's the Name
This is a simple phonics game for first grade, where you simply need to write the letters of the alphabet on a large piece of paper. Place photographs of all the children in your kid's playgroup, on the table. Now, ask your child to paste the photographs of his friends against the first alphabet of each of their names. This can be a good exercise because your kid won't even feel that it's a part of his curriculum.
It is very much essential that your kids catch up with the basics of phonics by the time they are in the second grade. This is because without the knowledge of the rules of phonics, it becomes difficult for them to read, pronounce or learn new words.
These were just a few examples of phonics games for kids in the first grade. You can also browse the net for some online phonics games and interactive phonics activities. You can even add a twist to the games by setting up a time limit. The games become all the more interesting when played by kids, together with their friends. So, go ahead and make learning phonics a fun-filled experience for your kids.