Monday, 31 October 2011

Montessori Phonics - Introduction To The Single Letter Sound /c/

*NOTE : In all these lessons, letters of the alphabet are not introduced.*


Introduction To Single Letter Sounds > Lesson 1

Introduction to the sound /c/


There are 3 periods to the tried and tested 3-Period
Lesson in Montessori presentations. The first period
is where we introduce everything in isolation. ie. one
material at a time. Montessori presentations are done
either on a work table or on the floor... and we use
work mats to define our work area/space.

I will show how to teach your child(ren) how to carry,
to roll and unroll a work mat another time.. :wink:
For now, here's the presentation order.

This letter makes the sound /c/.
Show child the sandpaper letter card.

Click here to hear the /c/ sound.

This is how I write/trace /c/.


Would you like to try?
Invite child to trace the sandpaper letter.

Tracing sandpaper letters provides
a sensorial experience for children.
It also helps them to practice the
lightness of touch since the sandpaper
letter is a little rough. Lightness of touch
helps children not to press their pencil
too hard (in future) when they are ready
for writing.

Trace the letter again and say to the
child... /c/ is for cat.


Would you like to touch the cat?
Pass the cat to the child. During
this time, you may engage the
child with discussions on cats.

For example, do you like cats?
What do cats eat?
How does a cat's fur feel like?
What sound does a cat make?
Can you move like a cat?

This discussion stage helps the
child remember the lesson better.

1.Child touched the model cat.

(Materials preferably should not be
cartoonish, as realistic to the real
thing as possible...)

2.Child talked about cats.

3.Child pretended to be a cat.
(Role play experience)

All these are learning experiences.
The more the child is engaged, the
better the retention of information

However, do bear in mind that the
discussion though encouraged, shud
not stray... distract... or prolong
beyond a few minutes... This depending
on the number of children involved in da

Carry on...

Trace the letter again and say to the
child... /c/ is for cap.


Similarly here, engage the child in mini

For example, do you have a cap?
Does it look like this one that i have here?
What design would you like on your cap?
When would you put on your cap?
Would you like to try this cap on?

Again, carry on with next object...
For 18mths to 3yrs old, since they have a
shorter attention span... try to give at least
three different objects beginning with the
letter sound taught for the day.

Why 3?

Cos, if you only have 2 objects... During the
next lesson, your child can just point anyhow
between 2 objects... it's like one or the other.

For older children, or children with longer
attention span... please, include more objects
for more vocabulary and also more sensorial
experiences. Not too many till it strays from
your lesson, but enough to engage & interest
your child(ren) to see through the entire lesson
happily. :wink:

Trace the letter again and say to the
child... /c/ is for crayon.


Again, engage the child in small talk..
Simple stuff like what colour, what can
they draw with crayon, (etc)

Now, that is the end of Period 1.

For Period 2 in the 3-Period Lesson, show
all the three objects you've introduced all
at the same time. In this period, you are
to observe how much of Period 1 has been
retained in your child's mind.. :wink:

In this period, the child is not required to say
out the names of the objects. He/She is simply
encouraged to point to them upon being prompted.

Can you show me the cap? Stress on the /c/
sound as you ask/prompt.


Can you show me where's the cat?


Can you show me where is the crayon?


That is the end of Period 2..

If child points to the correct object, good.
If not, it's ok. It just shows your child may not
be at full attention during the first period & that
the presentation should be repeated.. but not on
the same day/time... Preferably, allow some time
to do other stuff or play and get back to doing the
same presentation again..

You are the observer. Observe and make a mental
note of where and which part the child got it wrong.
It is not unusual in a Montessori lesson that we do
not correct a child immediately when a mistake has
been made during lesson, with the exception of - if
the child is going to hurt him or herself.. or in the
process of disrupting a fellow friend's concentration
away from his/her work.

We come back to the lesson again, thus providing the
child the opportunity to get it right the next round.

Try not to say, "WRONG!" immediately when you
observe the child pointing to a wrong object...

Follow through to finish that period and end it with
a simple, "We can do this another day..." :wink:

Now for Period 3.

In this period, the child is now tasked to show that
he/she can verbalize the words introduced and also
the letter sound that begins with the objects shown.

Show each object in isolation in Period 3.

1. Can you tell me what this is...?


Child : Crayon.
You : Good.

2. Can you tell me what this is...?


Child : Cat.
You : Good.

3. Can you tell me what this is...?


Child : Cap.
You : Good.

Today, we have learnt...
(Simultaneously showing the child the sandpaper letter)

... /c/ as in cat.... /c/ as in cap... and /c/ as in crayon.

Tomorrow/On another day, we'll learn more sounds.
I will place this material on this shelf, so you may
work with it when you feel like it. (Show child the plc)
Now, can you help me put the things away and put it
on that shelf... and next, can you help me roll the mat?
Thank you, i appreciate it.

Don't be surprised if you see your child picking up the
mat and the material and working with it on their own..
This is when we know that the child is learning through

If your child did not get any of the steps right at any
point of the 3-Period lesson, please do not despair...
Always come back to it again another time..

Let's recap on the 3-Period Lesson...

1st Period : Introduce letter sound & show objects in
isolation. ie. one at a time.

2nd Period : Display all the objects all at once and ask
child to show you, one at a time..

3rd Period : Ask the child to tell you the names of the
objects that you in isolation.. Then recap all the names
and the letter sound taught for the day.

"What goes through the hand, goes to the mind..."
[Dr Maria Montessori]

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