Development-Phonemic Awareness Assessment

employed in case of a phonemic lesson plan, are discussed. Each assessment’s suitability, pros as well as cons are discussed. Charting and data capture are also dealt with.

Assessment of lesson plan

Phonemic Awareness Assessment (Professional Development-Phonemic Awareness Assessment)

Stage of Literacy Development

Characteristics of This Stage

Phonological Focus Areas



Has partial knowledge of the alphabet

Inability to match voice with print (word concept)

No connection between sound and symbol in spelling (later in this step, may start with beginning or salient sounds)

Learned Readiness-nursery rhymes, preprimary 1 text




Awareness of Word

Awareness of Syllable



Can accurately track print

Employs knowledge of letter-sound for word deciphering

Development of sight vocabulary

Consistent use of starting and ending sounds while spelling words; also, learning digraphs, and medial vowels

Learned Preprimary-Primer text

Combining, manipulating and segmenting:




Early Instructional


Has large sight vocabulary

Learning more fluent and expressive reading

Shift in instruction focus from deciphering to comprehension

Correctly spells words with blends, short vowels, and digraphs; learning long and – r controlled vowels

Learned First to Second Grade text

No requirement for assessment

Phonemic awareness refers to the ability to hear, recognize, and manipulate separate sounds in words spoken. To learn reading in any alphabetic writing system, children should know how sounds work (Professional Development-Phonemic Awareness Assessment), and must also realize that individual sounds or phonemes constitute words. Phonemic awareness includes combining sounds together and forming words, segmenting words into discrete sounds, and manipulating sounds (i.e. sound addition, substitution, or removal in words). Thus, this assessment may prove quite suitable. Studies report clearly that students incapable of hearing phonemes and manipulating them find it difficult to master the link between sounds and symbols. This becomes even more challenging when those students also learn a second language. The difficulty is more marked when language transfer doesn’t correlate with the second. The process is often abandoned as a result of phonemic awareness’s tiresome nature (Phonemic Awareness). Studies have recently shown that, while this process may not be so simple, its benefits outweigh the negatives.

2) Yopp-Singer Test of Phoneme Segmentation

Assessment Process (Directions for Administering):

1. A test sheet should be made for every child in the chosen class. With the test being strictly oral, students mustn’t see any word on their list.

2. Each student must be separately assessed in some quiet location.

3. The assessment should be kept informal.

4. The assessment must be explained to students exactly as specified by instructions.

5. Show each student what they must do with practice words provided, by having them split each word before beginning the test.

6. Those who correctly break/divide all words/almost all words (17- 22 correct words) can be deemed phonemically aware, while those who are correct in segmenting some words (7-16 words correct) display emerging awareness of phonemes. Further, students unable to segment most or all words (0-6 correct) have inadequate phonemic awareness levels.

Students, in the Yopp-Singer assessment, are given words to segment in 10 to 15 minutes. One advantage of this assessment is that it is particularly useful in identifying areas of improvement early on in teaching, as a link between spelling acquisition, phonemic awareness, and successful reading, has been proven (Yopp-Singer Test). This test was originally made for kindergarten kids, but has also worked effectively for first graders and older children; this point may be considered a negative, as adaption is a must when trying to assess older students.

3) Phoneme Isolation

Assessment (Building Phonemic Awareness):

Children will:

Intone starting and ending word phonemes

Match objects having same beginning/ending sounds

Recognize whether key phonemes are found at a word’s starting or end

Link phonemes to written alphabets

Session 1 (Building Phonemic Awareness)

1. Teachers should pull out one object from a bag full of objects, and ask children to recognize the object. The teacher will also ask students what sound occurs at the word’s ending, and have them intone the sound (like / n / for can).

2. Start a chant with the above-stated object, by slapping your knees and clapping your hands. For instance, if your object is a can:

can — slap knees, clap hands can — slap knees, clap hands

/n / / n / can — snapping thrice

3. The chant should be continued with every object. Teachers must make sure that they alternate between starting and end sounds in the chant.

4. Show children an enlarged worksheet or picture taken from lesson pack.

5. State out loud what each object is, and have students say which sound is heard at the word’s ending. If their answer is right, have them identify the corresponding alphabet letter; if not, state the letter of the alphabet that makes the sound.

6. Have one student come forward and circle the right alphabet letter.

Session 2 (Building Phonemic Awareness)

1. Make students form a circle and play a game with sounds.

2. Teachers must give two signals to students: (1) if the sound is heard at the word’s beginning, the signal could be hopping on one foot, and; (2) if it is heard at the word’s ending, the signal could be hopping on both feet.

3. Students must be provided with some key phoneme to identify (e.g., / m/, / s/) and ask them where it’s heard. Subsequently, speak out a word and have them give the right signal.

4. Continue with the game many times, and alternate between starting and end sounds.

5. Show them an enlarged worksheet or picture, and point at the ending (or starting) alphabet letter of a word. Have children identify what sound is made and have one student come forward and write the corresponding letter at the place where the sound is heard.

6. In a similar manner, complete the lesson.

Isolating phonemes means being able to recognize the location of appearance of a sound in a given word, or to recognize which sound must be placed in a particular position of the word. Phoneme isolation is vital to general language and literacy development (Phoneme Isolation). Children adept at this phonemic awareness level can correctly respond to questions such as “Where is / p / sound appearing in ‘tap’?” This is one pro-of the assessment technique. However, it also has its flaws.

4) DIBELS Phoneme Segmentation Fluency

Assessment Plan (Training UO DIBELS):

Awareness of phonemes must be evaluated from the start of kindergarten, right through first grade.

Every student must be assessed at least thrice a year for ensuring that proper progress is made towards year-end goals.

Students identified as having potential reading difficulty must be monitored once or twice a month for ensuring effective intervention and allowing timely change in instruction.

The DIBELS assessment is used to test K-6 students for literacy skills. The test measures- alphabetic principles, phonological awareness, and fluency regarding the connected text, which is made up 3 of 5 key ideas for beginning to read. This time-efficient, three part test conducted one-on-one, helps teachers assess early development of literacy. Fluency in phoneme segmenting is also included. Because different areas are tested separately, the test enables teachers to quickly find out if students have issues with some specific reading area. This quick test (administering time <10 minutes) can, for instance, indicate that a certain student requires more phonics instruction, or is struggling with comprehension (Pros and Cons of Dibel). Some teachers, however, dislike the assessment as it also includes some nonsense words, their question being, if the test assesses whether students can decipher words or not, would they be able to pronounce nonsense terms such as ‘blund’ or ‘SWOT’ depending on their knowledge of phonics? Some districts and teachers are of the view that only real words must be incorporated into this assessment.

5) Rhyming Lesson Plan


Children will be able to identify rhyming word sets in poetry, songs and speech.

They will display recognition through some physical movement.

Rhyme recognition forms a key component in awareness of phonemes. It is a major pre-reading ability that children should be able to learn at preschool or kindergarten age, as it makes them prepared for deciphering and spelling words using phonics. It is important to facilitate development of rhyme awareness, maximizing students’ rhyme exposure through rhyme listening, recitation and singing, identifying and consequently responding to rhyme, and rhyme creation through age-appropriate fun activities (Kindergarten Phoenics). Also, physically responding to rhyme (like tapping, clapping, bending) strengthens rhyme-related learning by involving more of the child’s body while learning. However, one negative of this technique is that some rhyme schemes may be overly complex for certain students.


(n.d.). Bright Hub Education Provides Teaching Tips & Lesson Plans, Homework Help & Study Guides, Homeschooling Advice & Much More. Pros and Cons of Dibels Reading Assessment. Retrieved June 25, 2015, from

(n.d.). Emat634languageandliteracy [licensed for non-commercial use only] / EMAT634-LANGUAGE and LITERACY. Yopp – Singer Test of Phoneme Segmentation. Retrieved June 25, 2015, from

(n.d.). Homepage – ReadWriteThink. Building Phonemic Awareness With Phoneme Isolation – ReadWriteThink. Retrieved June 25, 2015, from

(n.d.). Official DIBELS Home Page: UO DIBELS Data System. Training: UO DIBELS Data System. Retrieved June 25, 2015, from

(n.d.). Phonemic Awareness Instruction for ELL’s. Phonemic Awareness Instruction for ELL’s. Retrieved June 25, 2015, from

(n.d.). ProLiteracy. Directions for Administering the Yopp – Singer Test of Phoneme Segmentation. Retrieved June 25, 2015, from

(n.d.). Reading First In Virginia | Welcome!. Reading First In Virginia | Professional Development – Phonemic Awareness Assessment. Retrieved June 25, 2015, from

(n.d.). Sing Your Way Through Phonics from Action Factor. Kindergarten Phonics Phonemic Awareness: Rhyming Lesson Plan. Retrieved June 25, 2015, from

(n.d.). Speech and Language Development, resources for parents. Phoneme Isolation. Retrieved June 25, 2015, from

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