Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Fridge Phonics: a useful "noisy" toy

Fridge Phonics is one of the few "noisy toys" that I recommend. Although reading the English language is full of exceptions to the rule, knowing the most common sounds which letters make is useful to most children when they are first learning to read.

Fridge phonics consists of 26 raised letter magnets and a magnetized base. When the letters are placed in the base and pressed, a song begins, such as, "F says fff, F says fff, every letter makes a sound, F says fff." For vowels, the long and short sound are included, as in "A says aa and A says aah, every letter makes a sound, A says aa-- and aah!" The tune is catchy, you will find yourself singing it under your breath, which is why it's such a novel and useful toy. Your kids will be singing it, too, and dancing to it while learning the names of the letters and their most common sounds.

This toy works well for kids who are very auditory, who already like to sing catchy tunes. The letters are in strong relief, so they stand out visually. When held, the shape of the letter is easy to trace with your fingers. They can be used on the refrigerator to spell words with no repeating letters. I watched my son at a fairly young age use the toy to figure out which letters he needed to spell his choice of words.

The letters are all uppercase, although expansion packs for lowercase letters have been available in the past. Also, sometimes the sounds of the letter are not as clear as they could be. You may need to sing along so your kids can see the shape of your mouth as you form some of the sounds.

No comments:

Post a Comment