What is the Sound Reading System?

It is a carefully constructed advanced ‘synthetic phonic’ reading programme that teaches children and adults how to read the complex English spelling code in simple, logical steps. The careful structure makes it both a reliable teaching tool and a tool with which to train teachers. The Sound Reading System is built round a comprehensive understanding of the entire English spelling code and could be usefully described as a ‘linguistic phonic’ programme.

It has broken down the code into a workable framework:

  • 26 alphabet letters,
  • 44 spoken sounds,
  • 176 basic spellings.

What does this mean?

First, the available 26 letters of the alphabet have to represent the 44 sounds of speech (therefore combining letters to represent sounds that are not represented by an alphabet letter: eg the ‘sh’ in sh-i-p). Instead of having 44 neat spellings to represent the 44 sounds, there are 176 basic spellings.

How is this demonstrated?

Thus most of the sounds have more than one spelling. Play the video to see the jigsaw reveal multiple spellings for single sounds. You can also download diagrams of the common spellings.

The sound /ee/ has 9 spellings:

m-e,    t-r-ee,     t-ea-m,    f-u-nn-y,     k-ey,    ch-ie-f,     r-e-c-ei-ve,      e-v-e,    m-a-ch-i-n-e

And the sound /f/ has 4 spellings:

f-a-t,       s-t-u-ff,     ph-o-n-e,      t-ou-gh