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New phonological awareness training for Early Years settings

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Tuesday 26 March 2024

The States Early Years Team has partnered with a specialist in phonics and pre-phonics programmes designed to support two- to four-year-olds in learning to read and write.

Emma Spiers, or The Learning Lady, has developed a full pre-phonics programme for young children to ensure they follow a carefully crafted step-by-step sequence of learning which is fun and engaging.

As a result of this partnership, all Early Years preschool and day nursery practitioners currently working with three to four-year-olds in Guernsey and Alderney will have access to the two-part training this summer term. Next academic year all practitioners, including childminders working with children aged two to four, will be invited to complete the six training sessions with Ms Spiers.

Kate Hynes, Early Years Education Officer, said:

"Children start to learn to read and write through structured phonics lessons when they begin primary school in their reception year, but before this can happen, there are foundation skills and building blocks that need to be in place. They need to have good listening skills, speaking skills, an understanding of rhythm and rhyme, and blending and segmenting words orally. Research shows that if these areas are well developed and the building blocks are strong, children will be able to access phonics lessons in school with confidence and enjoyment and better able to learn to read and write. We are confident that this new, exciting partnership will help ensure children across Guernsey have the best support in putting those building blocks together."

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