When working with a Kindergarten student in Chelmsford, MA who was having trouble learning how to read, I started with the basics: what are the sounds that you hear in a word? A child needs to be able to isolate each sound so that he can figure out what letter represents that sound. One of the best ways to begin teaching phonics is to use small objects that begin with each letter. I use these objects during each of my tutoring sessions, and they make learning to read fun and engaging. To begin working with this student, I took the small phonics objects out of a bag, one by one, slowing saying the name of the object and enunciating each phoneme. The student’s job was to blend the phonemes and say the word aloud. When the child learned that cat could be broken into three sounds, ‘c’ ‘a’ and ‘t,’ he began to understand how to break down the written word into phonemes in order to read the word.