I spy... (for 4 - 6 year olds)

‘I spy’ is a great way to purposefully extend children’s understanding of phonetic awareness to the world around them.


Home Learning

What to do?

‘I spy’ is a great way to purposefully extend children’s understanding of phonetic awareness to the world around them. It can be played anywhere and everywhere (i.e. at home, waiting at the doctor’s office, at the park, whilst driving) and can be adjusted to the level of your child’s learning. This game is sure to spark children’s curiosity, strengthen communication skills and allows children to practise critical thinking by connecting the dots between language and the environment.

To play at home, you can start with various familiar objects.

With your child, start by saying “I spy with my little eye, something that begins with B”. Allow your child time to guess and name objects around the room that begin with the same sound. Ensure you articulate your sounds clearly and accurately! Give prompts and clues if necessary, whilst still giving opportunity for children to guess (i.e. something you can eat). Take turns and allow your child to have a go!

I spy...

Learning extension variations

  • colour awareness: “I spy with my little eye, something that is orange.”
  • shape recognition: “I spy with my little eye, something that is a rectangle.”
  • rhyming awareness: “I spy with my little eye, something that rhymes with red.”

Learning outcomes

  • Literacy: phonics awareness, phonetic differentiation
  • Language/communication: vocabulary development, communicate ideas, planning, critical thinking, problem solving
  • Social skills: taking turns

Discuss with your child

  • What words begin with the _ sound?
  • What letter makes the _ sound?
  • What can you see around the room?
  • What clue can you give me?