Where do I start? This part is especially helpful for diagnosis. The drills it suggests here are also helpful in understanding kids’ level in the beginning of a semester.
Phonics Handbook foregrounds “the needs assessments”. The formal and informal assessments are categorized according to their natures. While the purposes and functions can be different, both forms of assessments encourage regular, effective evaluations which aim to close the gap asap.
There are 5 parts in the informal assessment, which are alphabet awareness,phonemic awareness assessment, basic decoding skills, invented spelling and attitudes to reading.
The argument of whether letter name or letter sound should come first in teaching is mentioned here. The book agrees with Adams and Ehri’s suggestion, which prioritizes letter names in teaching. Hence to teach it with ABC song. They suggest that letter names as a base for further reading, it is also helpful for spelling.
Also, about the handwriting practice. The book also suggests to focus on problematic letters only in students’ writing. Avoid writing from A-Z repetitively.