Phonics for the win

With my eldest having started school in September, I too was being educated on how they learn now. No longer the alphabet that we learnt, but all about sounds. When I see him now only 3 months in looking at words and trying to attempt to know what they are by sounding the letters out, I am truly impressed at how well the Phonics way works.

A childhood friend of mine Sinead Hamill sent me, some time back, her Phonics CD for children called ‘Sing a song of Phonics’ along with another Space one called ‘Sing along Solar System’ to learn all about the planets. Sinead is a fully qualified Montessori teacher, vocally trained and a regular contributor to Mummypages as their pre-school expert. I was more than happy to have a listen but decided to wait until school started so that it would be in line with what he was learning. Well my goodness this CD has become part of our daily routine. The boys absolutely love it. I say boys plural because all three do. The 5 year old school goer and phonics learner, the almost 4 year old pre-schooler and the nearly 2 year old toddler. All three of these children, all at very different stages of learning, are already obsessed.

We start the car, the CD comes on and it is played on the drive to school. My eldest every time requesting to skip straight to “L” as its his favourite letter!! We arrive at the first pitstop and as the engine cuts off the littlest gives out as the music has stopped. So, CD back on to keep him content while eldest runs into assembly. Back in the car and off to drop off number 2 with middle man pre-schooler singing away his sounds with the familiar rhyme. Toddler’s head bobbing also to the music he loves. This same scenario plays out upon collection and drop off every day. If travelling elsewhere and anyone is giving out, it is this CD that goes on and we all sing away happy out and restore calm.

I was cautious about introducing a kids CD to the car being fearful of us parents getting fed up. But I can truly say I love this one. Sinead’s little rhymes for each letter are done so well, cleverly funny and so easy to remember. The boys regularly repeat lines back to me when doing an unrelated task or during play or homework. It has hugely helped my eldest in school with his phonics. A genuinely fun way to learn, and the best accompanient in the car when they’re not all quite getting along. The planet one too as we pretend in the car that we are aboard a spaceship landing on each planet as we go. I do know she has also recently completed four albums based on maths tables, plus, minus, multiplication and division which will be available soon. Also these are all availabe on itunes and Spotify which is great as I don’t have a CD player anymore in the house.

It is amazing with so many things for children to watch and listen to, it can all become a bit overwhelming. Are they getting a good message and is it educational. Recently my boys were watching Netflix and they asked to watch Daniel the Tiger. I thought to myself that it was for much younger toddlers wondering why they wanted to watch something so ‘babyish’. But to my surprise when I watched it with them, the messages being taught were all about everyday feelings and emotions and how to deal with them. It was and is fantastic. Again something I saw the boys relay in everyday situations. Its all done through song too.

Both of these were kind of a little lesson to me, that my boys are still so young. Yes they’re into the Thomas and Paw Patrol and the dreaded mind numbing opening of Kinder eggs… But actually going back to simpler forms of media like the phonics CD and a great kids cartoon like Daniel the Tiger, has been teaching them so much more.

So anyone looking for stocking fillers for little ones, or teachers in school or pre-school, I cannot recommend this CD enough. Check out Sinead’s website. You’ll soon be singing about King Kevin, Ollie Octopus and the T-Rex heading for his X-ray.

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