One way of supporting the development of sound discrimination is playing with instruments or noise makers. Beginning to appreciate the difference between sounds made with instruments and to talk about the sounds instruments make will help children to tune into sounds. This is a skill that will help them begin to identify and pick out the different letter sounds (phonemes) that make up a word. You could try:
- Turning everyday items into instruments eg play pots and pans or the garden fence with wooden spoons or sticks.
- Playing two ‘instruments’ (could be any noise maker such a crisp packet or squeaky toy) then cover up and get your child to guess which is which?
- Hiding a bell while your child covers their eyes but ring it as you move. Can they tell where you have hidden it?
- Telling stories with sound effects.