This week the Phonics ABC Song has just hit 1,000,000 views on Youtube which is quite cool.

I’ve also found this really great video that Nigel in Fukuoka (I’m guessing it’s you Nigel!) made of his kindergarten kids doing his hip hop dance to the song! With the comment:

Thanks to Richard of Genki English this makes phonics so SO much easier to teach.

(Just look at the disappointment on the kids’ faces when the teacher accidentally puts on a non-Genki English CD!)

You can find this slower version of the song on CD7 or the Download Pack.

And over on the forum we’re also discussing the new 70 lesson Genki Phonics Synthetic Phonics programme. Unlike most phonics programmes in ESL, including the current Genki Phonics, this new course follows the UK government’s recommendations for a “high quality” phonics programme, and is, hopefully, going to be very tightly integrated into Genki English so even kids who know zero English yet will be able to start reading after just a few lessons.

We’ve been trialling similar programmes in India and China and the results are phenomenal AND really easy to teach.

Just like the ASL ideas the other day, if you have the time this could be another real game changer in how fast kids can learn English. If you’re a member then I’m hoping to start trials sometime during the Summer!

What do you think of the dance?

P.S. the winner of May’s Comment Competition was Joy K! Keep the comments coming and you might win this month!


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12 Comments

  1. Rosebud
    11:02 pm

    Gosh, that was phenomenal. Those kids were fantastic. Thanks.

  2. Yumiko
    12:32 am

    Super Genki kids!! I’m surprized to know that they are kindergarten kids. They are doing it so well!
    Thank you, Nigel, for showing us the dance. I’d like to try it at my school too. But I have to practice the “opqrstu” part. I could see kids make the shape of O and U (Am I right?), but couldn’t follow the rest. And I like that part!
    For kids, using their whole body is easier to learn phonics than using only fingers, maybe?
    I have never taught at kindergarten. This video and recent Val’s make me think about it…

  3. richard
    10:32 am

    @Rosebud: Nigel’s been raving about this dance for years, it is good isn’t it!

    @Yumiko: For phonics is it possible to do phonics with fingers? I’m still trying to find if there is any ASL for phonics! Kindergarten teaching is fun but it’s the most super tiring work you will ever do! Full marks to kindergarten teachers for doing that everyday!

  4. Gumby
    12:42 pm

    Great video Nigel! Fun to see them make a few letters in their dance. Do you show them the letters when you teach this or is mainly for them to hear and say the sounds?

    @ Richard: There is fingerspelling in ASL. Here is the link
    http://www.signingsavvy.com/browse-fingerspelling.php

    It is not based on phonetics, I don’t think there is a separate one for that….

  5. richard
    1:05 pm

    Yeah, I’m looking for phonics rather than spelling. Maybe there just aren’t any ASL signs for phonemes?

  6. Yumiko
    1:31 pm

    Here are two links I’ve found. But I think you have already known these.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OlMPQ-Lr2_Y

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0LenOhnnAk

  7. Spencer
    1:35 pm

    That is exactly what I am doing with my 5th and 6th grade students. I am teaching them the writing stroke orders for the upper and lowercase letters to make the teachers in elementary and junior high happy, but I am also making sure they shout out the phonics of the letters after they finish. We all use our fingers and swoosh them in the air like Harry Potter. It is great to see those young students doing phonics and it proves to Japan that the younger you teach them, the better. Great job! ^^

  8. richard
    1:43 pm

    @Yumiko: Thanks for these. Two very different approaches there, the first uses the ASL alphabet to represent the phonemes, and the other uses a sign of a real animal for each letter. Still not quite what I’m looking for, but maybe useful??

    @Spencer: That’s a great way to get around things if you are forced to teach the “alphabet” in 5th & 6th!

  9. Yumiko
    1:45 pm

    Oh, the first one I put is the same as gumby’s. It’s fingerspelling. Sorry, I didn’t even notice it!

  10. Val
    1:08 am

    Hi Richard! THank you for pointing us to Nigel!
    THat is definetly something I WOuld like to try to myself! And what THAT happens means the kids WILL LOVE IT!
    I am starting to teach phonetics in my 3/4 yrs old class. And I am starting without music with the ASL spelling.. to separate them from the ABC in spanish!
    I am trying ASL finger spelling after I saw the results in vocab…
    Spanish letter are the same as english ABC, but different sound in some of them.. so I needed to separate them… so ASL with english phonics.. and it is working! Phonics need their own signS or gestures!
    THey are relating ABCs in english with their sound in english!
    One we know most of them! We will do our own choreo New zelnad MAori Style! Inspired and dedicated to Nigel!
    LEt´s make a concert!!!

    See ya soon everybody!

  11. Val
    1:11 am

    BTW…how come we only can have grey faces?
    I want my colorful thingy when I post!
    How can I do that?

  12. Carol
    3:50 am

    I love the dance and the kids do it so well!! I’m really impressed! Getting them up and moving is good for kids.

    Spencer- really neat idea!

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