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Getting Started with the Science of Reading: Structuring Your Explicit Phonics Lessons with printable phonics lesson plan template laid on colored paper

How to Structure your Phonics Lesson Plan: Getting Started with SoR

Next up in my Introduction to the Science of Reading series, we’re looking at our phonics lessons. More specifically, our systematic and explicit phonics lessons. During the last several weeks we’ve been diving into the bottom strands of Scarborough’s Rope focusing on word recognition. I talked about the need for systematic and sequential phonics instruction in my last post. In this one, I’m not focusing on what phonics skills you should be teaching. Most of

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The Need for Systematic, Sequential, and Explicit Phonics: Getting Started with the Science of Reading

It’s time we spend a little bit of time diving into phonics. Phonics is at the forefront of the Science of Reading conversations. In fact, when you hear someone talk about SOR, they may really only be talking about phonics. The science of reading instruction is about so much more than just phonics instruction. But, phonics hasn’t been enough of a focus in our classrooms over the last several decades, and our NAEP results show

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long a cvce blending lines page next to text "5 decoding activities for your small groups"

5 Decoding Activities to Practice Phonics Skills

For some students, depending on their phase of reading development, it can take a significant amount of time before a word is orthographically mapped and stored in their long-term memory for quick retrieval. Meaning, it’s recognized on sight and would be considered a “sight word“. Along the way, students need many exposures and repetitions with words to build the needed connections for automatic word reading. Students need opportunities to practice and review skills well after

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Sight words, high-frequency words, and heart words: Getting Started with the Science of Reading

Sight Words, High Frequency Words, and Heart Words, Oh My! Getting Started with SoR

Today’s post is another area that can be confusing and deserves its own focus: sight words, high frequency words, and heart words. To really understand the science we need to be clear about the similarities and differences between each of these commonly used terms and clear up misconceptions. For starters, high-frequency words and sight words truly aren’t synonyms. Nor are sight words the words we need to memorize because they can’t be sounded out. Both

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Getting Started with the Science of Reading: What is Orthographic Mapping text on the left. On the right is a breakdown of the word hat from written, to sounds, to word reading with a visual hat icon.

What is Orthographic Mapping? Getting Started with SoR

How are we able to instantly recognize words? We can recognize them whether they’re in uppercase, lowercase, or even mixed case. We’re also able to recognize them in a wide variety of fonts, even cursive script. We are able to recognize them, not because we’ve stored pictures of them in our minds, but because we are good at two things: decoding and orthographic mapping. Orthographic mapping is the process our brains do naturally to store

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