The team at BOOKBRIDGE Learning Center Angtasom took part in a training for phonic excercises. The training was financed by the BOOKBRIDGE Quality Fund. Sothika Khoeun, Community Hero at Angtasom, writes about the training.
I feel proud of all teachers to have spent their time for the two-day workshop on Phonic Lesson in Kep, Kampot province. It was really not a formal workshop. We decided to stay in a guess house and use the kiosk as platform for the workshop.
Sitting on the wooden floor with a hung-hammock, our trainees enjoyed participating in discussion, working in groups and doing presentations. We started by dividing them in three groups with asking them to find words with “a”, “e”, “i”, “o”, and “u” sound as they have already known a lot. Each group had to present the words they found and pronounce them clearly. After finishing this first session, teachers began to identify the sound of each vowels. Then I presented the basic phonic lesson beginning with vowel sounds and consonant sounds.
In the second session, I presented Consonant + Vowel + Consonant (CVC), front-consonant blending and end-consonant blending, and diphthong sound (ai,air,ay,au,ee,ea,ei,ey,eigh,ear,ie,oo,ou,oy,oe,ous,our,ue,ui). How wonderful this is! Teachers were surprised and started to realize how wrong they were in pronunciation. They said it is like learning Khmer language. If students knew this method, it would be easy to read and write the new words.
Then I presented special combination between vowel and consonant such as “al, ar, age, aw, ength, es, ed, er, ew, ing, igh, ir, ign, il, ow, old, oll, ol, or, ur” in the third session. Almost every problem with reading was solved in this session. I guided them through the phonic lessons as I prepared and divided it into three levels. They enjoyed reading each words provided in the textbook with confidence.
In the last session, I presented sight words, magic e, silent words, consonant+ le syllables, and special blending such as “ sh, ch, th, sion, tion, and ture”.
Here are some quotes I got from the teachers expressing their point of view toward this workshop:
Mr. Prum Pros, a primary school teacher and a part-time teacher of English in learning center Angtasom said that he was very thankful to BOOKBRIDGE. He learnt English from his teacher and he read the words as his teacher did. But it was the wrong pronunciation and no one corrected him. By the time he started working at the Micro Learning Center Veiluvoan, teaching in the beginner level, he was more corrected from the Head of Learning Center. He knew his strengths and weaknesses. After the training he now can correct himself in reading words. This workshop is great to him. He has never studied this method before. He learnt the words by the whole word, not by phonic sound.
Miss. Vi Reaksmey, a beginner teacher at the learning center said she had never studied this method. This method is good to teach kids from the beginning by starting to identify the sound of vowels and consonants. She thought this was a trick to teach kids to read and write English. She was very happy to join in this workshop and wishes to have such a workshop again.
Mr. Kor Sareth, the librarian of learning center Angtasom said that the workshop was great because it can help him to take away his long time question. He wondered how kids learnt to read and write English words without knowing how to spell from letter to letter. Like Khmer, we have the way to spell word and write word through spelling. Now, he got and understood it clearly. He would help to teach kids in the learning center.
In conclusion, I am grateful to have the BOOKBRIDGE qualitative fund. The first time I got it, I trained only teachers of Micro Learning Center Angroka to improve their English and methodology. Now, I got it for the second time and it is really useful to improve the quality of the course offering in the learning center. If I get the funds next time, I will use it with my teacher again in order to improve their English. As far as I am concerned, to focus on quality is to focus on teachers. I would like to use more investment in our teachers. Thank you BOOKBRIDGE for this qualitative fund.