Phonics can make a big difference in teaching reading and writing. But how do you know when your student needs phonics help? I have found this phonics test to be my guide when trying to understand phonics needs.
As a little history, when I ran a college-level reading program, it was important that I be able to quickly identify those needing phonics help. I used this diagnostics test to do this. Those scoring 75 and below were taught phonics using what has now become my Phonics for Keeps textbook.
To access this test, click here. To score the test, subtract all of the mistakes—whether by omission or commission—from 100. This test lends itself to helping a teacher select just those portions of the Phonics for Keeps text that deal with the weakness that a particular child may have either solely or foremost.
The reason this test works is that it tests a student’s ability to single out a vowel or consonant sound clearly enough to hear it in words with different spellings.
In my experience, no one has faulted me for teaching them something that was too simple or of no benefit. The reasons for this are that the test works and the needs are there.