Phonics is an integral part of early childhood education. There is always a need for fun-filled, lively and comprehensive educational material that provides practice for students. Any teaching aid that is convenient and easy-to-use finds application in schools and at home. The Skill Builder series (Phonics) by Sonia Mehta (published by Puffin) opens a whole new channel for having fun with language. The series of four books are a part of The Skill Builder series that encompasses a wide range of skills such as numerical, logical, critical thinking and language skills.
Using the books
The Phonics series can be used independently by a parent or teacher. With four different levels of complexity, the books are broadly aimed at students in Grade 1 (roughly corresponding to 6 years of age) up to Grade 4 (around 9 years). The teacher or parent can choose the apt ones that correspond to the child’s learning stage. The series can be used to reinforce concepts taught in the classroom, to assess students’ learning, to provide extra practice or just as a fun language activity. The primary focus of the activities is on decoding and encoding words and spellings as well as pronunciation.
What we love about the Skill Builder series (Phonics)
- The books are colourful with plenty of illustrations, that make them attractive and appealing to children.
- There is a good mix of activities including crosswords, word searches, choosing the right answers, completing words, answering in sentences and so on. Hence, it is not monotonous at all.
- The content as well as the design does not overwhelm the child.
- Key skills of language such as listening, speaking, spelling are also incorporated.
- While the focus is on phonics specifically, inadvertently, due to the nature of the exercises some other skills such as creative thinking, decision-making and critical thinking also are a part of the exercises.
- The answers to the exercises at the back of the book provide handy reference for the adults working with the child.
And to sum it….
The activities are fun and challenging and hence we would recommend that this be used within the classroom setting to infuse fun in learning. If not, this is a great way for parents themselves to add a bit of zing into language learning. The Skill Builder Series by Sonia Mehta promises to be a fun-filled journey!