“Songbirds” is a complete phonic reading scheme of 60 books, and is part of the Oxford Reading Tree.
|Julia says ...
Creating this series was my favourite kind of challenge. Almost every word in every book had to be phonically decodable, and yet I wanted to write proper stories which children would enjoy reading. I also wanted them to be really varied, as I know how children’s tastes differ. So some of the stories are in prose, some in rhyme, some are realistic and others fantastical. There are a few non-fiction titles, a play and a quiz, and the books are illustrated by a wonderful variety of artists. I think my favourite characters are Spike who says he can dive, drive and feed wild lions, and a kleptomaniac kangaroo called Sue who comes to school and steals the spoons and glue.
I had a lot of fun during the first Coronavirus lockdown making a storytelling broadcast of three of the stories. You can watch that here.
For an outline of the entire scheme and the phonetic contents, click here.
There are also eight Songbirds collections for home use, each volume containing between six and twelve stories, and I’m delighted that these and also the individual titles (all signed by me!) are now available from my local bookshop.
Here are the covers of all 60 books plus the eight collections. Click on a cover for buying options.
More Stage 3
These books revise all the phonics learnt in stages 1-3: the short vowel sounds a, e, i, o and u; consonants and double consonants; two consonants making one sound th, sh, ch, wh, ng, ck; and consonant clusters making more than one sound at beginning and ends of words (e.g. elf, lift). In addition, one letter pattern for each of the common long vowels sounds is taught: ee (as in three), ie (as in tie), oa (as in toad), ai (as in train) oo (as in too and also as in good).
These books introduce all the common spelling patterns of the following long vowel sounds:
ue (as in blue) with the letter patterns oo, ew, ue, u-e, o
oo (as in look) with the letter patterns oo, u, oul
ow (as in down) with the letter patterns ow, ou
oi (as in join) with the letter patterns oi, oy
Additionally, they teach the soft ce/ci sound (as in dance/cinema), and er (as in sister).
Below are the covers of the eight collections of my Songbirds Phonics stories, in graded order.