Ds has had books home recently with non phonetic words in them eg high. I'm not sure how to help him with it. Do I just say, that word is high, and try to help him remember? Or is there a way of doing it like there is with phonics?
Well, you could just tell him the word. Or you could help him sound it out. With high, you could say something like "What does this say?" while covering up the "igh" part. Then you could say, "and the 'i-g-h" together say 'I.'" Then say the h sound, pause, and say the I sound. Then ask him what word it is. Another way to do it is to cover up the gh part and ask him to say it. Then tell him that in this word, the gh help the I say it's name. Explain that some words sound the same but are spelled differently. Then explain the definitions for both "hi" and "high."
There are lots of ways to do it, but just saying the word is just fine. He'll get it from practice and the phonetic components can be filled in at school.
If your DS's teacher doesn't send notices home with what the kids are working on, ask him/her what phase of sounds they're on (Igh is a phase 3 sound, for example) and whether she has a copy of the resources they use- often there will be copies of sound mats on the wall for the kids to refer to, so using the same one would be helpful (generally a sound will have a picture example, egh igh might have a picture of the nIGHt sky). The teacher should eb able to point you in the direction of listening resources so you can hear how the sounds are being taught (which sounds obvious but everyone gets unsure of how to teach certain sounds to their kids).
In oxford reading tree books phonics used in the book are usually on the 1st page with the sight/ challenging words, you should go through those before asking him to read and also use the discussion questions on that page. It is on the back of the cover page.
He gets all different books to read, they're not all the same. But yes I did discover on the website his phases and different sounds so now I know a bit more. I just find it a bit random, he had some really difficult homework sent home at the weekend that there was just no way he would be able to do which threw me a bit.
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