#TPTTuesday Phoneme Reversal: Pair-’em-up!

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Hello and welcome back to our #TPTTuesday featured item of the week!

Phoneme Reversal: Pair-em-Up is a unique activity targeting early phonological awareness skills. We have both a basic and advanced edition with developmentally appropriate targets.

What is it?

Phoneme Reversal: Pair-em-Up is a no-prep, no-print phonological/phonemic awareness activity. It’s a fun, colorful, and engaging activity for students who are working on phonological awareness skills. Phoneme Reversal: Pair-’em-Up can be purchased individually (the basic or advanced version) for 5 dollars each, or as a part of the Phoneme Reversal Pair-em-Up Bundle for a total of 8 dollars. Great savings!

Before we dive deeper into what you receive when you purchase Phoneme Reversal: Pair-em-Up, we want to include a few definitions for relevant terminology:

  • Phonological awareness is the all-over awareness of sounds in spoken words and the ability to identify and manipulate those sounds.
  • Phonemic awareness is the ability to focus on and manipulate individual sounds (phonemes) in spoken words.
  • Phonics refers to knowledge of letter sounds and how to apply that when decoding unfamiliar printed words. Phonemic awareness refers
  • Matthew Effect describes the phenomenon in which children who start reading well will continue to do so, while those who do not have a more difficult time catching up. Not only is it difficult to catch up, but there is also a widening gap between those who have difficultly reading from the get-go and those who do not. Stanovich created this model to describe how problems with early phonological skills can lead to a downward spiral in which eventually other higher cognitive skills are affected.

Common phonological awareness tasks include segmenting, blending, rhyming, alliteration, identifying syllables in a word. The last phonological awareness skill to develop is phonemic awareness. Phonemic awareness is the ability to think about and work with individual sounds in spoken words. This is where our Phoneme Reversal: Pair-em-Up comes into play!

Phoneme reversal specifically requires a student to segment and identify the sounds of a word, then reverse them! Our phoneme reversal series has both an advanced and basic edition that contains age-appropriate targets.

At the conclusion of Phoneme Reversal Pair-em-Up, students have had 32 opportunities to practice phoneme reversal! For even more practice, kids can come up with their own phoneme reversal!

What’s inside:

8 slides of phonemically reversed pairs (CVC)

  • 2 slides with 3 pairs each
  • 4 slides with 4 pairs each
  • 2 slides with 5 pairs each

Who is it for?

The development of strong phonological/phonemic awareness skills is beneficial to all students learning to read, but even more important for struggling readers presenting with dyslexia, a language impairment, and/or developmental learning disability. Children who struggle with phonological and phonemic awareness tasks are at greater risk for reading difficulty in the future. Early intervention is key because, early on, kids are still in the “learning to read” phase. In the future, however, kids must switch from “learning to read,” to “reading to learn.” The switch to reading to learn is where struggling readers begin to fall short. After which, the Matthew Effect (defined above) takes place.

Not all hope is lost! These children can catch up. It’s our job as speech therapists and reading interventionists to equip students with solid phonological/phonemic awareness skills, in hopes of accelerating the rate at which they learn the connection between sounds and letters! 

How to use it?

First, familiarize yourself with the word associated with each image. Next, label each image for your students and encourage them to figure out which word from the right column sounds like the reverse of a word on the left.

If they’re not sure, have them break the words down into their phonemic parts (discourage students from thinking of the letters of each word, since we know that words are often spelled differently from the way they sound.) For example, the images on the title page are “dab” and “bad.” Phonetically, they are /dæb/ which is the reverse of /bæd/. Check out the images below for more examples!

We hope you enjoy this activity! If you do, don’t forget to leave and review and follow our TPT page!

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