Bring it Together
Turn your iPad into a musical-phonics instrument with Jam on Phonics. Learn letter sounds and beginning reading skills by jamming along with 17 songs and chants!
Jam on Phonics is divided into four graded sections: Vowels, Consonants, Vowels and Consonants and Words. You’re first introduced to short vowel sounds followed by consonants grouped in voiced and unvoiced pairs. The Vowels and Consonants section then brings all the sounds together in alphabetical order followed by a Words section to develop basic word-building skills using a consonant-vowel-consonant layout from left to right.
Each section comes with a song to introduce the sounds, three chants to explore, learn and assimilate those new sounds as well as a Jam track to play with and make up your own chant or song. The songs and chants focus on developing key language skills through listening, speaking, matching/reading and spelling all within the groovy context of rhythm and song!
Jam on Phonics is made for everyone but especially with children in mind and with the right of education to be commercial-free. To protect your privacy and the on-line safety of your children, we do not collect or share any personal information. This app has no advertisements or in-app purchases.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is Jam on Phonics for British English or American English?
A: It's for American English.
Q: Why doesn't Jam on Phonics correct me as I play?
A: We wanted this experience to be like playing an instrument or sport. You learn as you do it; you learn from your mistakes. Your aural skills will naturally develop the more you play and discover the differences in the sounds.
Q: How do I know what to do?
A: Each song and chant has instructions at the beginning and throughout the music. See the Activities for Jam on Phonics section below for more activities and games to play.
Q: I can't hear the music when I push an exercise button?
A: First, make sure the volume level is turned up on your mobile device. If it is, then, push the "Stop/Rewind" button on any page. Now, tap a song and it will play. The "Stop/Rewind" buttons can act as a reset button.
Q: Why does the "Pause" button disappear after I tap it?
A: The "Pause" button disappears when it has been pushed so you know that you have pushed it. Tap the "Resume" button to continue the music (the "Pause" button will re-appear) or tap the "Stop/Rewind" button to clear the music and select other music.
Q: Are there going to be more Jam on Phonics apps for iPad and Android?
A: Yes! We are currently working on a spelling game and the next level for Jam on Phonics.
Q: My student doesn't have good rhythm and doesn't do the rhythms correctly.
A: The more your student practices, the better his/her rhythm will get. From a different angle, remember that the goal is to learn phonics. If your student touches the correct sounds, then the purpose is served. The rhythmic exercises are just a fun and different way to learn the letters' sounds. One specific way you can work with this student is to use the "Pause" button frequently and just make sure your student is touching the correct sounds (allowing the rhythmic part to be secondary). Then hit "Resume" for the next challenge.
If your question hasn't been answered, email us.
Activity Board for Jam on Phonics
Activity 1: Tap, Say and Jam!
a. With your iPad screen facing the student(s), tap “a” then say/repeat the sound /a/.
— Have the students repeat what you do… tap the “a” then say the sound /a/.
b. Do this with all vowel sounds. (a, e, i, o, u).
c. Now, turn your iPad screen away from the students so they can’t see what you’re tapping. Tap a vowel sound, then have the students say the sound and tap it on their screens. Repeat this until all the vowels have been presented and practiced.
Note: When students tap the wrong vowel sound, demonstrate the correct sound by tapping or saying it again and have the students say it again. Let them tap until they find it.
Teaching Tip: Arch your eyebrows and try to trick the students as you tap and say the different sounds. Let them correct you.
d. After you have warmed up the students by practicing the vowel sounds, play the “Touch” chant. This chant focuses on listening then identifying the sound by tapping it on the screen. Each section gets progressively more challenging by getting faster.
e. Now, use the “Jam” track. You can lead by tapping different vowel sounds and having the students repeat after you.
Repeat steps a, b, c, using the “Jam” track’s rhythmic beat. An example is:
Tap “a” (2 beats)
Say “a” (2 beats)
Students repeat the same
Do this with all vowel sounds
for Step c: Say/Tap “e” (4 beats)
Students say/tap “e” (4 beats)
Repeat 5-10 times
Teaching Tip: For the best results, sketch on a piece of paper what sounds you will do. As you do this more often, you will be able to improvise with the “Jam” track easier.
f. Individual work: Have each student plan his or her “Vowel Rap” chant by writing down six vowel sounds that he or she will play with the “Jam” track.
g. Pair-work: Put the students into pairs. One student goes first by playing his/her “Vowel Rap” chant first while the other student repeats what he or she has played. After one time through, have the students switch. Students can do “paper, scissors, stone” (rock, paper, scissors) to see who will go first.
h. Lights, Camera, Action! Have individual students come to the front of the class and lead the class with his or her “Vowel Rap” chant.
Activity 2: Phonics Beat Machine
Materials: iPad/Android Tablets with Jam on Phonics installed on all tablets
a. With your iPad/Android Tablet screen facing the student(s), tap out any rhythm using one letter sound (e.g. the letter “a”).
— the students repeat the rhythm by saying the /a/ vowel sound then tapping the letter on their iPad/Android Tablets.
— Do this with all the vowel sounds (a, e, i, o, u).
b. Next, tap a rhythm using two letters on your iPad/Android Tablet. Follow the same steps above for two letters, three letters, etc.
c. When the students seem confident with the process, turn your iPad/Android Tablet away from the students. This helps the students rely on hearing rather than seeing. (Note: This can happen during the first time doing this activity or at a later time).
d. Repeat this way until all the vowels have been presented and practiced.
Note: When students tap the wrong vowel sound, tap or say the correct sound again and have the students say it repeatedly while they tap until they find the matching sound.
e. After you have warmed up the students by practicing the vowel sounds, play the “Rhythm” chant. This chant focuses on listening and identifying the sound(s) by tapping it on the screen in a rhythm. The first section begins with one sound tapped in a rhythm and gets progressively more challenging by adding a two sounds, three sounds, until the final challenge section of using three to five sounds. Use the “Pause” button freely if it becomes challenging. The “Pause” button is there to help the student isolate challenges and figure them out.
f. Now, use the “Jam” track. You can lead by tapping different vowel sounds in different rhythms and having the students repeat after you.
Repeat steps a, b, c, using the “Jam” track’s rhythmic beat.
Teaching Tip: For the best results, sketch on a piece of paper what sounds you will do.
Don’t try to write down the rhythm for each sound, just make the rhythm up spontaneously. As you do this more often, you will be able to improvise with the “Jam” track easier.
f. Individual work: Have each student plan his or her “Phonics Beat Machine” chant by writing down six vowel sounds that he or she will play with the “Jam” track.
g. Pair-work: Put the students into pairs. Student 1 goes first by playing the 1st vowel sound with a rhythm then Student 2 repeats what Student 1 played. Student 1 plays the 2nd vowel sound with a rhythm then Student 2 repeats what Student 1 played. After Student 1 has played all six sounds, have the students switch. Student 2 now plays each of her six vowels sounds with rhythms then Student 1 copies her. (Note: Students can do “paper, scissors, stone” -rock, paper, scissors- to see who will go first.)
h. Lights, Camera, Action! Let individual students come to the front of the class and lead the class with his or her “Phonics Beat Machine” chant.
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