Laura Hanafin, Year 1 Teacher, Great Binfields Primary, Hampshire
“Last year was the first year that we did it for the whole year and our phonics screening results were the highest by a long way compared to previous years. The children did amazingly well and in our area of Hampshire we did really well. We completely correlate that to Monster Phonics. Their reading progression changed so dramatically through the year”.
“We did the trial and within two sessions we knew that we wanted to carry on with it, we were really impressed. The kids loved it ..there was no way we could have done two days of the trial and then said, we’re not going to do those monsters anymore because the children were completely taken in that first session.”
Since 2016, Great Binfields Primary phonics % results have increased by 9.5% and is considerably above both the National and Hampshire average % scores. Great Binfelds Primary Scores are 7.7% above the Hampshire average and 8.6% above the National average. Interestingly, our school’s standards have increased considerably at a time where Hampshire and National figures have remained constant.
Ewa Wilson, Head of School at Bonners CE Primary School, East Sussex
“We’ve been really pleased with the Monster Phonics resources and programme. Pupils are securing understanding of phonic sounds far quicker compared to previous years. The layout of the scheme enables secure coverage ready for the year 1 screening check. Great for ready planning and extremely straight forward to use and access. The resources are fun and varied. We have enjoyed phonics sessions.”
Victoria Alliston, River Primary School, Kent
We have found monster phonics has reignited enthusiasm in the children as it is very multi-sensory and provides a range of ideas that we can use for individuals, depending on their needs, at both a whole class and intervention level. We have found it particularly successful with our boys.
Last year we started using this in term 4 in FS and Year 1 and were pleased with the outcome of our phonics testing being the highest yet at 86%. We therefore made the decision to continue with our subscription and have started teaching it to our new children. We now use it through FS, 1 and 2 and we have seen the children using the different monster characters to explore alternatives for their writing rather than always sticking to the same sound.
Anita Spanou, St Pauls and All Hallows School, Haringey
Monster Phonics has been a great tool for the school and definitely something that we are keen to renew for the new academic year. All the children have benefited from the different resources and have engaged in the variety of exciting lessons.
Feedback from the Leicester City Schools SENCO Trial, dated January – June 2016
Children loved the monsters and really identified with them
They loved stories and spotting monsters on flashcards
The colours helped children to ‘hook’ onto sounds easily – highly effective visual/auditory link
They noticed monster digraphs within words when reading in other situations
Class teachers noted transfer of skills – came to ask MP staff about the characters
Child receiving Toe By Toe, BRWP and Monster Phonics used characters across all 3
The colours really help children to chunk word for both reading and writing
Children became so familiar with visuals they were able to decide whether choice of digraphs looked right for spelling – supports visual memory
Word maps worked well in class to support transfer of skills – much effective than grapheme chart
Children love the songs
Songs/visuals support memory
Children (boys particularly) more engaged and excited about learning. Had much more fun – learnt through play by using the games
Staff enjoyed teaching MP – ‘could the penny drop’
Children asked to continue after SATs/end of term – disappointed when lessons didn’t happen
Excellent resources – really good value. Well packaged and easy to store.
Resources/visuals all really well received – bendy sticks helped to develop shape awareness, children loved working with sand and play dough
Great website and printable resources, e.g. word cards
Children becoming so familiar with letters they independently use for spelling in daily writing when available
Writing in pen colours to match characters highly effective
Ghost letters allowed exploration of more complex words and helped children to become genuinely interested in how they worked – wouldn’t have tackled these words without them – supported the explanation of unusual spellings.
Maryse Vernon, Year 2 Teacher at Harrow International School, Bangkok
“I have been using Monster Phonics in my lessons since April 2014 and noticed a new vibe and a buzz amongst my students. They absolutely adore the monster characters and constantly relate to them when they are reading or writing. Not only are the children able to make easy connections to the sounds the characters represent but they love their stories and the catchy songs or dances. Often the children add their own part to a story making use of the phonic strategy they have learnt.
It is always a concern at the start of the year when children struggle to spell words commonly used in their daily lives as well as those known in the teaching world as the high frequency words. Monster Phonics has addressed the gap for me by identifying those words and phonics that children need to access straight away, not once they’ve worked their way through a phase or a spelling scheme. This in itself motivates the children to learn them! I have seen a dramatic improvement in the growing accuracy of my class in their spelling and extremely plausible attempts at extended vocabulary.
My Year Two class love the kinaesthetic approach to their phonics lessons using the Monster Phonics resources. The magnetic letters allows them to quickly find the focus phonic to make targeted words or those they identify themselves. The colour codes make it possible for them to find another alternative if the grapheme doesn’t fit (for example in phone and road). The letters can be hidden around the room, used independently in small groups or with the whole class allowing greater opportunities to move around or explore quietly. There are many lesson ideas incorporating movement and the children in my class respond very positively to this approach. The use of bendy lessons supports the children as they strengthen and refine their fine motor skills and assists their understanding of letter formation (an added bonus!) The consistency of the Monster Phonics colours offer so many opportunities for children to work with tactile medium such as plasticine, paint or florescent pens.
I know when something wonderful is working for the children in my class, that it’s a keeper and Monster Phonics has it place firmly embedded in my Literacy programme. An area of teaching that possibly lacked creativity or fun is now full of potential for meaningful learning with successful outcomes. I can definitely recommend Monster Phonics to anyone who wants to achieve on either of these scores.”
Amy Allen, SEN Teacher, Alice Smith International School, Malaysia
“My children love this programme, especially the different characters used throughout. They enjoy using the coloured magnetic letters and using them to practise spelling the words. They also enjoy making up stories to go with each of the characters and use as many words as they can from the word lists to reinforce the phoneme and the spelling pattern. The word lists are extremely useful for the teacher and are very comprehensive, ranging from simple to more advanced words, so my older SEN children have benefited hugely. The ghost s and the tricky witch are our favourite characters!”
Elisabeth Kind, EAL Teacher at a Language School in Myanmar
“In my EAL classes I use monster phonics and I love it. The soft letters are great for playing around, putting them on any surface, finding the spelling to the letter sounds and putting silent letters in words. I have used Monster Phonics with four children who have entered school during the semester and needed a quick introduction to phonics. Their progress has been much faster than the students who learn it in class. I am not quite sure why that is so. The children love the lessons since they are interactive, geared to all different kind of learners and produce fast results. The tactile learner can hold the letters, work with them and “feel” them. The visual learner can look at the different colours and get CONCEPTS, not just sounds or words, the kinesthetic learner is out and about putting the phonemes together, sounding them out, finding words that fit the sound and the audio learner is busy finding the correct phonemes to the sounds he or she hears. And ALL, and I mean all, my students love the way they can see behind the complex sound system and see a pattern in it! That is the greatest advantage of it. The fun, the pattern discovery and the progress that goes along with it. (Silent letters are their favourites since in Burmese they have so many of them!)”
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