What is phonological awareness?
Phonological awareness is awareness of the sound structure of words including syllables, rhyming, speech sounds.
What is phonemic awareness?
Phonemic awareness is a subset of phonological awareness and refers to awareness of individual speech sounds (phonemes).
“Phoneme awareness instruction, when linked to systematic decoding and spelling instruction, is a key to preventing reading failure in children who come to school without these prerequisite skills”Moats (2010)
Phonemic awareness is important as:
- It sets readers up ready to understand that words are made up of speech sounds and that these sounds are represented by letters.
- It gives readers a way to approach sounding out and reading new words.
- It helps readers understand the alphabetic principle (that the letters in words are systematically represented by sounds).
- It is fundamental to mapping speech to print. If a child cannot hear that “bat” and “broom” begin with the same sound or cannot blend the sounds /ssssssiiiiiiitttttttt/ into the word “sit”, he or she may have great difficulty connecting sounds with their written symbols or blending sounds to make a word.
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