The Importance

of the Letter Sounds of Qq

Learning the letter ‘q’ as the ‘ck’ sound.

· Reading Teachers,Learners,Child Reading Development,The Letter q,5 Pillars of Reading

Gaps are recognised to rectify understanding. The letter 'q,' I will consider is a delicate letter of the alphabet. Originally the sound of 'q' is 'koo.’ However, as English is my first language and being exposed to other languages while growing up, the sound of 'q' sometimes would give you the 'ck’ sound.

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It is important to point out that there are many words that we must learn with the letter 'q' sound. Also just to point out again that there are words with the short 'qa’ as the short ‘ca’ sound and it is in our English dictionaries. I would have learnt and noticed in my teaching career while teaching reading, professionals would not mix the single 'qa’ as the ‘ca’ sound because it can be confusing or contradictive in phonics.

Sadly, we should not practice only a 'one-way' method when teaching phonics. There are so many opportunities that children can be given when adding in the 'q' as the ‘ck’ sound to a curriculum. I consider it quite innocent and simple to implement. We live in a world with many languages. The spelling of words with the letter 'q' has been a problem for many students that are of many age groups. Usually, some students do forget to put the'q' in some words. They may put the letter 'c or k' at times. The teacher is then left to strategize, maybe by putting these words as sight words or high-frequency words and still it not enough. Sight words are decodable. A teacher at different grades can consider this extra work or as a reason to question.

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In my teaching, it was not hard to find at least two-three letter words to satisfy or fill such an important gap in teaching phonetic reading for kids generally. I considered it to be satisfying the importance of learning the letter ‘q’ as the ‘ck’ sound if teachers can vision a reading/learning gap being closed. Take some time to understand what is being said here.

This does not mean that it is not understood that the dominating sound and the number of words in the English language and dictionaries are not recognized with the ‘qu’ sound. Yes, I agree. However I believe, from a Special Needs/creative standpoint, it must be understood that the letter 'q' has sounds that teachers should consider when teaching explicitly and systematically.

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Let us clarify the objectives about the teaching of the letter ‘q’ in the classrooms. I believe that there is a missing part in the puzzle again. When teaching phonics, it seemed the letter‘q’ sound could have lost part of its importance and has become irrelevant. Sadly this can cause problems, along with the flow of teaching reading in its five components. Not forgetting spelling. I just wanted to highlight the subject as well as it does have its principles. Give the letter 'q' a chance to express its appropriateness. It is understood that because of language barriers, some sounds; whether two-letter or three-letter sounds were adopted.

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  • The letter ‘q’ can be taught as the sound of 'c' or 'k' at the phonics and phonemic awareness levels. I understand that teachers for all grades do teach and would have to review phonemic awareness in their classes on a termly basis and also in remedial sessions.

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  • It is the same as the letter 'q' can be taught as the sound 'koo, ’transitioning to the dominating and popular ‘qu’ sound, which creates many of the English words respectively.

Here is an idea many teachers are familiar with and can adopt teaching the letter ‘q’ as the sound of ‘c’ or ‘k’ at the phonics and phonemic awareness levels.

The letter ‘q’ can be taught as the sound of ‘c’ or ‘k’ first. Then introduce the letter ‘q’ as the sound ‘koo’ after. The sound "qu" can be introduced after, to accommodate those bigger words with the ‘qu’ sound. At other teaching levels, it is important to re-introduce the letter q as the sound of ‘c’ or ‘k.’ Why is it this important, because it aids in teaching spelling strategies and also it automatically integrates to aid the teaching of other languages.

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Integrating this teaching tip about the letter q as the sound of ‘c’ or ‘k’ critical thinking students can eventually and independently differentiate between the sounds and it can aid in learning to spell, as they genuinely conceptualize and grow in their reading instructions taught. Nothing is wrong with change because gaps are recognised to rectify understanding.



Frequently Asked Questions

Why is it important to read with your child?

Reading with your child has numerous benefits. It promotes bonding and strengthens the parent-child relationship.It helps develop language skills, expands vocabulary, and enhances comprehension abilities. Reading together also fosters a love for books and storytelling, nurturing a lifelong passion for reading.


How can parents make reading sessions engaging and interactive?

To make reading sessions interactive,parents can ask questions about the story, characters, and illustrations. Encourage your child to make predictions, share their thoughts, anddiscuss the story's events. Use different voices for characters and create a lively atmosphere. Additionally, incorporating props, acting out scenes, or relating the story to real-life experiences can make reading time more exciting.


What are some tips for choosing age-appropriate books for my child?

When selecting books, consider your child's age, interests, and reading level. Look for books with engaging illustrations, relatable characters, and age-appropriate themes. Consider books that align with your child's reading goals, such as introducing new vocabulary or building comprehension skills. Libraries and book stores often have recommended reading lists categorized by age, making it easier to find suitable options.

How can reading with my child improve their literacy skills?

Reading with your child exposes them to language patterns, proper pronunciation, and storytelling structures. It enhances their listening skills, develops their understanding of story elements, and strengthens their comprehension abilities. Regular reading sessions also improve their reading fluency, vocabulary, andoverall reading comprehension, setting a strong foundation for academic success.


Are there any strategies to encourage reluctant readers to engage in reading together?

Yes, several strategies can encourage reluctant readers to engage in reading. Let them choose books based on their interests and hobbies. Incorporate a variety of reading materials like graphic novels, magazines, or interactive e-books. Create a cozy reading environment, establish a consistent reading routine, and set aside dedicated reading time. Offering praise, rewards, or incentives can also motivate reluctant readers to participate actively.


Are there any online resources or apps that can assist in learning more about reading?

Yes, there are numerous online resources and educational apps available to support teaching letter sounds. YouTube channels such as @LPKReadingLiteracy and @ASL. Websiteslike ABCmouse, Starfall, and Reading Eggs offer interactive games, videos, and activities that focus on letter sounds. Educational apps like "LetterSchool," "Phonics Ninja,"and "Teach Your Monster to Read" provide engaging and interactive experiences to reinforce letter sound learning.




If you desire to read more you can check these resources.