One to One Correspondence in Reading

Do you have a child who reads their school reader (take home book) and will read the book without looking at the text?

Do they add in more words or skip words when they are reading?

This is fine if your child is at the ‘retelling’ stage of reading. Retelling is when children make up their own story from the pictures.

However, once children begin learning to read the text they need to be taught, each written word represents a spoken word.

The Australian Curriculum 2016 uses the term segmenting sentences,  with the Foundation (Prep) outcome as follows:

‘Segment sentences into individual words and orally blend and segment onset and rime in single syllable spoken words, and isolate, blend and manipulate phonemes in single syllable words (ACELA1819)



To help children understand one to one correspondence when reading, a good activity is to use counters and a simple repetitive text.

Repetitive texts are used for beginning readers as it helps develops a child’s confidence and fluency in reading.

sentence 4Ask your child to count the number of words and place a counter over each word.

sentence 1

Cover the words with the counters.


Remove one counter and ask your child to read one word. Even if your child is memorising the text rather than reading the words, this will help them associate a written word with a spoken word.

sentence 3

Once children understand the concept – each written word represents a spoken word – encourage them to use their finger to point to each word when they read.

Finger pointing in the early stages children tend to swipe their finger over the words rather than point at individual words.

A perfect example of a child’s first reader with information on how to help your child read their first readers I have written a first reader called, Where is Teddy? For $3 you receive a PDF of,

Where is Teddy? First Reader with an opportunity for your child to colour in and make their own

Information on how to help your child read their first readers.

teddy title page 2

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