phonological awareness

 phonological awareness

Introduction and background information

Why is phonological awareness so important? Because it helps children to learn to read and write!

Phonological awareness refers to the ability to understand that spoken words are made up of sounds. It also involves being able to break down a word into those constituent sounds, and then manipulate those sounds (e.g., by deleting, switching, or adding sounds).

Phonological awareness is important for learning to read because children need to be able to recognize that written words represent spoken words (that is, that letters represent phonemes, which are the smallest unit of sound in speech). Children also need to be able to work with spoken words without having their knowledge of letter-sound correspondences interfere so that they can correctly apply the rules of letter-sound correspondence when reading unfamiliar words.

Phonological awareness is important for learning to write because children need to be able to deconstruct spoken words into their constituent sounds to decide how to spell them. They also need access to knowledge about how letters represent sounds to correctly represent speech in print.

  1. Specifics of the relation between phonological awareness and reading

    Phonological awareness is one of several related language abilities that are necessary for learning to read, including letter knowledge (the ability to identify letters in words), vocabulary knowledge (the ability to understand word meanings), syntax knowledge (the ability to analyze the structure of sentences), and text knowledge (the ability to recognize that text can communicate meaning in addition to sound).

    Phonological awareness is particularly important for learning to read because it is the only one of these abilities that is unique to reading. Children who are unable to learn how letters represent sounds in spoken words will still be able to understand word meanings (via vocabulary knowledge), analyze sentence structure (via syntax knowledge), and recognize the meaning in written text (via text knowledge) to read. However, phonological awareness is the only ability that is unique to reading; therefore, children who are unable to learn how letters represent sounds in spoken words will not be able to read any familiar or unfamiliar written words.

    Specifics of the relation between phonological awareness and writing

    Phonological awareness is also important for learning to write because it allows children to deconstruct spoken words into their constituent sounds to decide how to spell them. A child who can recognize that written words represent spoken words (that letters represent sounds), but has not yet developed a detailed awareness of how sounds are represented by letters in particular words, will be able to spell only familiar words.

    Phonological awareness is also important for writing because children need access to knowledge about how letters represent sounds to correctly represent speech in print. A child who can recognize that written words represent spoken words (that letters represent sounds), but has not yet developed a detailed awareness of how sounds are represented by letters in particular words, will be able to spell only familiar words.

Measures of phonological awareness

Several measures can be used to assess children’s level of phonological awareness. The most common measures for this purpose include the following: Rhyme detection: The child is presented with a list of rhyming words (e.g., “pat” and “bat”) and asked to find the matching non-word (“pat” and “spat”).

Rhyme judgment: The child is presented with a set of items that vary along a phonemic dimension (e.g., the initial sound of the word) and asked to determine which two items rhyme.

Phoneme deletion: The child is presented with a list of words containing a target sound (e.g., “op”, “op”, “pot” etc.) and asked to say the word without this sound (in this case, producing the words “ap”, “ap”, “apt”).

Phoneme segmentation: The child is presented with a group of words containing a target sound (e.g., the first sound in the word) and asked to say each word beginning with this sound (for example, saying “buh-duh-guh” for the word “buggy”).

Each of these sub-tests measures somewhat different aspects of phonological awareness, but all provide information about children’s level of phonological awareness.

Phonological Awareness 

The article discusses the importance of phonological awareness and why it is important to learn how to read by using words with their sounds. The writer also includes that several measures can be used to assess the child’s level of phonological awareness when it comes to reading. The article then suggests that adults should recognize when a child has trouble in this area and also give those opportunities to practice for them to learn and gain experience.

The author does not take a specific stance on any relevant issues, but rather gives his or her opinion on how he or she believes phonological awareness is important in reading, writing, and spelling.

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