Phonics Instruction

A Critical Foundation for Reading Success

Reading Horizons Explicit Phonics

The Best Way to Teach Phonics

All forms of phonics instruction are not equal. Some programs use an implicit method, which requires students to learn each new word as a whole word and look at beginning sounds, ending sounds, and context clues to determine what the word is. This implicit approach provides few strategies for students to use on the next new words they encounter. Reading Horizons uses an explicit method , which builds from part to whole, beginning with instruction on letters (graphemes) and their associated sounds (phonemes). Explicit instruction provides students with a manageable set of strategies that can be applied again and again to decipher and read new words. It is explicit phonics instruction that has been shown to be most effective for teaching students to read.

Combine Letters to Create Written Slides and Written Words

After working with individual letters in both uppercase and lowercase forms, students start combining letters to build written expressions of slides and single-syllable words. To identify the presence of a vowel in a written word, students begin using the first permanent mark in our unique marking system: an X, which is placed underneath each and every vowel in a word.

Teach the Reading Horizons Phonics Marking System

Teaching these essential strategies ensures that there are no gaps in student knowledge of the English alphabet, letter formation, and the correspondences between letters and sounds. Once students have mastered these sound/letter correspondences and combinations, they are ready to begin learning how to decode words—the next step for becoming a successful reader.

Learn more about decoding strategies ›