Phonics: The study of the relationships between letters and the sounds they represent; also used to describe reading instruction that teaches sound-symbol correspondences.

Decoding: The ability to translate a word from print to speech, usually by employing knowledge of sound-symbol correspondences; also the act of deciphering a new word by sounding it out.

Sound to Symbol: Phonics instruction that matches sounds to letters.

Students Should Demonstrate These Skills at the End of Kindergarten:

  1. Letter-Sound Correspondence Knowledge
    • Identifies the letter when someone produces the corresponding sound.
    • Says the most common sound associated with individual letters.
  2. Decoding
    • Blends the sounds of individual letters to read one-syllable, short-vowel, decodable words (e.g., sun; map).