For Painless Phonics, Use Mnemonics (Memory Tricks)

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Posted on : 27-02-2011 | By : My Study Coach | In : Improve Your Memory
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For Painless Phonics, Use Mnemonics (Memory Tricks)


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Home Page > Education > Homeschooling > For Painless Phonics, Use Mnemonics (Memory Tricks)

For Painless Phonics, Use Mnemonics (Memory Tricks)

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Posted: Aug 17, 2010 |Comments: 0
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The pendulum has swung back!  Parents and educators with an eye on current research are recognizing that students need phonics skills to decode most words on the page quickly and automatically, and that this process is a lot easier, and more fun, when mnemonics, or memory tricks, are used to train the letter sounds and rules of phonics.  Although this mnemonic approach is successful with regularly achieving children, children and adults who struggle with phonemic (sound) awareness, visual awareness, and short term memory skills benefit greatly from the cues.  Research also shows that when these cues are directly embedded into the letter shapes, even quicker gains are made.  Students who have difficulty learning letter sounds can look at picture cues that tell them what to do with their mouths, relieving short term memory stress while they are working on building phonemic awareness and phonics skills for reading and spelling. 

One unique approach to using mnemonics to train phonics is the Lively Letters program.  This program, created by Nancy Telian, MS, CCC-SLP, uses lively characters to illustrate what students should do when makng the sounds. The letter characters interact throughout the program, helping students learn some of the most challenging letter sounds and phonics rules with humorous stories, hand movements, pictures, and music. 

Once students have developed their phonics skills with this quick, engaging approach, they are ready to learn the words that break the rules of phonics, through another mnemonic approach, in the Sight Words You Can See program, created by Penny Castagnozzi.  After learning the most frequently misspelled and misread words, such as “what,” “come,” “have,” and “want,” students are ready to dive into the rich world of literature with the skills that will help them not only survive, but thrive, when reading.

For almost twenty years, students using the Lively Letters program have consistently been making gains of 1.5 to 3 years in 30 to 40 sessions.  Using the mnemonic letter cards, the process is as fun as it is powerful!  The program has been used successfully since 1990, created in Boston, MA.  The website completely illustrates the rationale and research that support the program, and offers free samples of the letters to test out with students.  The program authors are currently offering free training in the use of the Reading with TLC methods and materials.  They can be contacted through the website at www.readingwithtlc.com

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Penny Castagnozzi -
About the Author:

As a reading therapist witih a background in elementary education, and co-director of Reading with TLC, Penny Castagnozzi is involved with presenting national seminars in the use of two unique, research-based programs that have been proven to dramatically improve reading skills - Lively Letters and Sight Words You Can See.  The author of Sight Words You Can See, Lively Letters Character Poems, Wedding TIme for Emmie and Jake, and A Roomful of Rainbows, Penny is recognized for her creative and humorous style.

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Article Tags:
phonics, mnemonics, phonemic awareness, reading disabilities, dyslexia, dyslexic, homeschool, teaching, reading, memory tricks, lively letters, reading with tlc, penny castagnozzi, seminar, professional development, education, educational materials

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As a reading therapist witih a background in elementary education, and co-director of Reading with TLC, Penny Castagnozzi is involved with presenting national

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