MELS is an English Language Programme for young children at kindergarten/school. It has 3 levels (Bronze, Silver and Gold). The MELS app provides parents and kindergartens with aural and visual content, interactive activities and educational games to guide children through the MELS books. The MELS-44 phonics system provides accurate pronunciations for children to strengthen their abilities in literary reading through phonic learning and fun texts and songs. I am sure children will find reading and interacting with the MELS series fun and rewarding.
What is MELS Phonics-44 ?
MELS English Language Phonics-44 Reading Series for beginners consists of five levels. The five levels cover the complete 44 spoken sounds system (24 consonant and 20 vowel sounds). The levels divide the Phonics-44 into five parts: A to Z, blending with CVC words, non-phonics, blending sounds & digraphs, and vowel phonograms.
A to Z
The “Phonics A to Z” introduces 26 letters that cover 18 consonant sounds and 5 vowel sounds. The child will learn to match a unit of sound (a phoneme) to each of the 26 letters. The phonics A to Z provides the knowledge of saying basic sounds that pave the way for blending the individual sounds to say words in the following stages:
The pronunciation of many words in English don’t match their spelling. Words whose pronunciation and spelling do not match are called non-phonics. We memorise each of these words as a whole word instead of reading it letter-by-letter. The “non-phonics reading” lists the most important non-phonetic words in different sentences in various contexts. These words are highlighted in red in the book.
CVC Blending Sounds
A CVC word is a word that is made up of a consonant, a vowel, and ended with another consonant. Cat, hot, tip, man, and hut are all CVC words. A child who already knows all their letter sounds might be shown the CVC word ‘cat’ and be asked to read it out loud. This is the point where they are required to use their knowledge of the sound of each letter and blend these sounds together so they are saying the whole word and not three individual sounds.
Consonant Blends, Double Consonants and Digraphs
Once children have learnt to read a variety of CVC words, they move onto reading combinations of consonants (initial blends, i.e. plan, …, and final blends, i.e. romp, …, double consonants, e.g. “gg” as in “egg” and digraphs, i.e. consonants join together to form a kind of consonant team that makes a special sound, i.e. s and h combine to form sh, which makes the /sh/ sound as in phonemic). When these blends combine with parts of a CVC word, they form new words (e.g. ship).
Other Vowel Phonograms
There are another fifteen vowel phonograms. These phonograms are a group of letters that form different vowel sounds. Once a reader knows them and is comfortable with letters working together it becomes natural to look for these letters working together to make one sound.