Monthly Archives: October 2019

Phonics and Sound Patterns

Image of the alphabet

Phonics is the study of sound patterns. It is a method taught when learning to read, through linking sounds with the symbols that represent them.

This helps anyone learning the English language with the pronunciation of sounding out letters phonetically to make up a word.

According to Henry (1998) ‘teaching decoding and spelling based on word origin and structure results in improved reading and spelling.’

This method is commonly used in reception, to teach children how to read and spell.

There are certain formulas used to teach the English language by breaking down words and arranging certain letter groups together.


Decoding is the process of teaching children to think of how a letter sounds by looking at it and repeating it aloud. This increases fluency with reading and pronunciation.


Decoding examples & Letter patterns

  •  Consonant, vowel, consonant words: e.g. o, a, e : d-o-g, c-a-t…
  • Consonant clusters: consonants with no vowels between them e.g. st, tr, cr, sk : street, tree…
  • Vowel digraphs/trigraphs: vowel sounds placed together making a single sound e.g. oa, ai, ee, oo : book, meet…
  • Consonant digraphs/trigraphs: two or three letters placed together to make one sound e.g. ch, sh, th, wh : chat, shoe, that…
  • R-controlled vowels: when an r is placed next to a vowel, changing the sound the vowel makes e.g. car, fur, horn…

C and K sounds:

  • ‘As both letters make the same sound it can be confusing knowing which one to use. Identifying them as ‘curly c’ and ‘kicking k’ allows for easier differentiation between them both.


  • Once children can identify individual letter sounds and clusters of letters, they can learn how to blend the sounds and say the entire word. This is the stage children learn to write out the words, called encoding.


Once the basic letter patterns are broken down and sounded out, decoding ensures that pronunciation and spelling are easy to teach. It is important to teach phonics and sound patterns in a broken down, simpler format, as when some letters are placed together, it changes their sound. For example, when an r is placed next to a vowel, it changes the vowel sound (like ‘fur‘ and ‘car‘). Once language patterns are simplified, words can be phonetically sounded out and fluency with reading and spelling is improved.


For additional help with English, why not book a free trial with StudyBox! Or call us on 020 7459 4110 for a chat.


StudyBox opens a new centre in Battersea!

Image of the new StudyBox Centre in Battersea.

On the 21st October, StudyBox opens a new centre in Battersea!

StudyBox Battersea will be the latest addition to our other three centres, in Wallington, Sutton and Croydon.

With our new centre situated on the rear side of Riverside Nursery, it is ideal for parents who wish to drop their children off at nursery, or StudyBox for tuition!

StudyBox is an after-school tuition company established in March 2015, teaching children aged 5-16. We hire a wide range of enthusiastic tutors who adapt to the different learning styles and abilities of students.

At StudyBox, we believe it is important to build confidence. This encourages a love of learning that can help children to reach their full potential. We teach students in line with the National Curriculum and tailor each child’s lesson to meet their unique needs and to attain their learning goals.

Whether it’s assistance for GCSEs, SATs, the 11+ exam, or just additional tuition to be top of the class, StudyBox are here to help!

For a free trial at our new Battersea centre, or any of our other centres, apply here! Alternatively, call us on 020 7459 4110 for a chat.

The address for StudyBox Battersea:

Rear of Riverside Nursery,
Ensign House,
Battersea Reach
Juniper Drive,
Wandsworth, London,
SW18 1TA

Making learning fun for children

Image of a student with a tutor.

Homework and studying are a constant in every child’s life. It may seem like a chore, especially when the subject area is challenging. That’s why making learning fun for children is an easy solution, in order to engage with content and making the workload enjoyable.

Try following one of these tips to make learning fun!

Hands-on activities

Doing creative and hands-on activities will help to engage children through interactive learning. Activities can be tailored to the child’s interest, turning a chore into a fun activity.

Let them take control

Letting children take control of the activity or task will help them become more invested. This will enable the child to create their individual approach to learning, with their own, unique style. Motivate them in the subjects they are interested in and guide them in the ones they are finding difficult.

A visual approach

Make learning more visual through integrating colours, felt tips, paint – various arts and crafts, for a more hands-on approach. This will make the tasks engaging and exciting, so the child will want to participate!

Additional tuition

Our tutors at StudyBox believe in making learning fun for children, through activities and tailored sessions to the child. We use a range of approaches and monitor progress, boosting those grades whist making learning that little bit more enjoyable!

Call us on 02086428884 for a chat with one of our friendly tutors. To book a free trial with StudyBox, sign up here!