Helping Kids Read

For those of you who are new I recently started subbing at the school for the para’s that are there. I mostly assist teachers with reading lessons and once in awhile do additional one on one reading lessons with kiddos who are starting to show signs of struggling.

Over the past few months I have learned a lot of tricks from the teachers at my kids school. At my kid’s school they learn a total of 60 phonogram sounds before they are done with kindergarten. That is their base of reading education. When we first moved to the community my son couldn’t tell them any of them because his prior school did not teach them! They worked quickly with him and now he is almost to a second grade reading level. But a lot of that has to do with having parents who are involved to. I am a firm believer that the teachers are not the only one there to teach your child. Each parent should be involved in their education some how. Be active in the class room, communicate with the teacher, help with home work, read extra and maybe do some extra studies.

Today I wanted to share one thing we are starting to do in our house.  If your child’s school does not do phonograms you may want to just work on it by yourself. Otherwise this would just be great extra practice.

First you can print off free flash cards at  You will have to cut them and glue the fronts and backs together. But it is worth it. Some of these phonograms have some cute little sayings that you can use to help your child remember them. Here are a few video clips of my daughter demonstrating the motions:

Now here are the sayings (you can write these on the back of your note cards to help you)

m = have your child rub their belly while saying “mmmm”
qu = have your child say “The letter q is always written with a u and we say “qu” the letter u is not a vowel here”
x- “ks” have your child put their arms together in an “x” fashion
y- has 4 sounds- the child could also say “y is a spy keep it away from the i “
er – “er the er of her” point back and forth to each ear
ir- “ir the ir of first”  when your child says first have them hold up their point finger like they are saying they are number 1
ur- “ur the ur of nurse” move your hand like you are tracing a necklace on your neck line
wor- “wor the wor of works” cross your arms like an x on the ks part
ear – “ear the ear of early”  stretch your arms up like you are stretching or yawning
sh- “shhh” have your child hold their finger up to their mouth like they are shushing someone
ee- “ee double ee always says e(draw a line about the e)”
ay- “ay 2 letter a that we do use at the end of english words”
ai- “ai 2 letter a that we do not use at the end of english words why? english words do not end with i “
oy- “oy that we do use at the end of english words”
oi- “oi that we do not use at the end of english words why? english words do not end with i”
aw- “aw that we do use at the end of english words”
au- “au that we do not use at the end of english words why? english words do not end with u”
ew- “oo u that we do use at the end of english words”  wave your hand in front of your face while saying it
ui – “(say the 3 sounds) that we do not use at the end of english words why? english words do not end with i
ch- for the “ch” make a drumming motion for the “k” put hand up to the throat for the “sh” put finger up to mouth
ar- “ar the ar of car”
ck- “two letter ck used only after a single vowel which say a e i o u”
ed- “ed, d, t, past tense ending”
wh- have your child put their hand under their mouth and say it as if they are blowing a feather off their hand
oa- “o the o of boat”
ey- “a e that we do use at the end of english words”
igh- “igh 3 letter i “
eigh- “eigh 4 letter a”
kn- “n two letter n used only at the beginning of a base word”

These are all really simple and really helpful. Another site I have been told to look into is  My daughter brings home a lot of extra reading from that sight to work on. So I will be looking into registering myself to have access to this. 

I hope this help you guys as much as it has helped me!

~I am not a certified teacher. These are tips that have been passed onto me by the teachers at my kid’s school. I was not compensated for this posting~

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16 thoughts on “Helping Kids Read

  1. Kim Croisant

    I so will be printing this list. I subbed for 6 years and do remember this list written on the board. AT the end of my subbing I only subbed for elementary as that’s where I loved to be. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did…a very rewarding job!! They love their subs too!!

    Thanks for joining in on my very first Tuesday’s Thoughtful Comments and I hope you come back next week.

  2. MikiHope

    This is a first for me–phonograms–sounds like an off shoot of Phonics which is how generations of us learned! And I agree with you totally–the parents have to work with their kids besides school–

  3. Donna

    We’ve always supplemented our son’s education. He goes to a great school, but they do have to follow a curriculum. We can help him expand on that. This is a great list!

  4. Ashley B.

    Love this!! I agree more parents need to be involved with their kids school! I unfortunately can’t do in the classroom things as often as I’d like (I have two boys that stay home with me during the day) but every night we sit down as a family and the two older kids do workbooks we bought them, then we read before bed.

  5. Sherryl Wilson

    These are great for teaching little ones. These combined with sight words will have a child reading at 2nd grade quickly.

    We work with these when our grandchildren are over.. they think it is a game!

    Stopped by from Tuesday’s Thoughtful!


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