While most kindergarten and first grade children have mastered the complexities of speech, they do not know that spoken language is made up of individual words, which are made up of syllables, which themselves are made up of the smallest units of sound, called "phonemes." This awareness that spoken language is made up of discrete sounds appears to be a crucial factor in children learning to read and spell accurately. The Orton-Gillingham Approach taught with and appropriate pace and skill level helps young learners become aware of phonemes before they receive formal reading instruction. That phonemic awareness then becomes more developed as students' reading skills develop.

The Prospect Centre, More than Phonics approach incorporates many of the following activities for young learners:

  • Engage young children in activities that direct their attention to the sounds in words such as rhyming and alliteration games.
  • Teach students to segment and blend sounds.
  • Combine with instruction in letter-sound relationships.
  • Systematically teach the sounds and letters to form words.  
  • Keep a sense of playfulness and fun, avoid drill and rote memorization.
  • Allow for and be prepared for individual differences.