Phonics in Singapore: Overrated, or an unknown problem?

In Singapore, we take great pride in being one of the top English-speaking nations in the region. However, interestingly, 64% of our populace speak languages other than English at home.

It’s vital, particularly in the crucial early developmental years, that children are immersed in an environment that encourages the proper use of English. However, the question arises – are we genuinely providing that for our young ones?

For preschoolers (those under the age of 6), most printed words seem unfamiliar to early readers, even if they’re aware of the spoken form of the word. This is where our phonics classes in Singapore come in, teaching children to associate letters with their corresponding sounds. This association enables them to link unfamiliar printed words to their spoken counterparts.

Phonics, a method for teaching reading and writing, empowers children to relate letters with their respective sounds. This vital relationship enables them to decode unfamiliar words and facilitates independent reading.

The gradual transition from meticulously sounding out a word to subsequently recognizing it rapidly is known as “learning to read by sight.” For fluent reading, every reader must eventually make this transition.

Parents often mistake their young child’s impressive speaking ability for an equivalent reading proficiency, which is not always the case. While the former fosters communication, the latter (reading ability) forms a crucial basis for the child’s future academic performance, especially in English.

Many children express a fondness for reading, yet often face challenges as their speaking skills outpace their reading abilities.

Children reading a book

Many young children love reading, yet often struggle as their speaking ability is better than their reading abilities.

This is especially relevant in Singapore’s context, where our primary schools impose a higher-than-average academic requirement compared to the global standard. An insufficient foundation in reading ability may result in a child struggling to comprehend various academic subjects and keep pace with our demanding academic curriculum.

Our phonics program in Singapore, an established teaching method, has demonstrated effectiveness in assisting children with learning difficulties, such as dyslexia and speech delay, to improve and progress.

For children diagnosed with or exhibiting early symptoms of such difficulties, exposure to an effective phonics program at a young age has proven to be more impactful in overcoming their challenges. We, at Paced Learning Academy, firmly believe in this principle and aim to provide the best phonics class in Singapore.