If you’re anything like me, before lockdown you wouldn’t have known a phonics scheme if it smacked you around the face. But now that millions of us are homeschooling, phonics has become part of daily life (if you have little ones that is)
Like many other busy parents, I’m juggling homeschooling our two children with working from home, so anything that helps my children learn independently is a win-win in my book. During the winter months, I’ve eased back from trying to limit screen time but I do pro-actively try to encourage it to be (slightly) educational.
I’ve come across a few apps so far that my 5 year old Reception daughter can engage with, and she’s enjoyed being able to play them herself. We jumped at the chance to give Time for Phonics a try, here’s what we thought:
Time for Phonics has been designed by the super talented Heather McAvan, who is the brains behind the Mrs Mactivity website. We’ve used loads of Mrs Mactivity resources in the past, for everything from colouring to maths and especially their themed resources. Everything is so beautifully illustrated, but with a great modern touch and without being too ‘school like’.
Time for Phonics follows the same ethos, with lovely characters that are instantly endearing to children. Who’s not going to like a unicorn or dinosaur eating your spelling words?
When you first sign up to the website you are faced with different ‘phases’, so it is best to either start at the first phase or check which one your child is in. Once you have chosen your phase you can then practice different letters and sounds, so it’s great if you want to target what your child is learning or practicing.
My daughter has really enjoyed the games on Time for Phonics. Because there are three different games, each featuring their own characters, and you can choose the sound, there’s a lot of variety. It’s great for dipping in and out, without it feeling ‘samey’. The words that in the games are also familiar, including some names, so it’s a real treat when your child sounds them out.
Time for Phonics is free for a 30 day trial period and then costs £10 for a full year’s access. It’s really good value, considering the range of sounds and words included and the fact that you can progress through the phases.
*We were gifted a subscription to Time for Phonics in exchange for an unbiased review.