Please note this page is currently being updated. A revised version of the Spelling for Older Students program will soon be available: At this stage revised lessons 1 - 26 have been uploaded. For lessons 27 - 35, please try again in Christmas Holidays.

What is the SOS program?

The SOS Program, created for SPELD SA by Jan Polkinghorne, is a series of Power point presentations containing activities to build basic phonic and spelling knowledge with students from year 5 upwards called SOS. The 35 lessons have been recently revised and are structured with the same sequence of sounds as the Jolly Phonic Program so that they can be readily used with all of our free synthetic phonic resources on our site.

Why do struggling students have difficulty spelling?

Older struggling reader/writers frequently have never been taught to spell by sound. They have mostly relied on memorizing words. Many can see no logic behind English. To help them achieve we need to change their ideas of reading and writing. To help them see that English is a code which takes the sounds we speak and translates them via symbols into marks on a page so others who know the code can change them back into speech. We need to begin again by teaching these students the code, and helping them learn to blend the sounds to read and segment the sounds to write. Old strategies of guessing need to be replaced by blending and segmenting right through a word. There are 42 (44) sounds in English but we only have 26 letters to represent these sounds therefore we have to use combinations of letters (digraphs) to represent some sounds. Once we have learnt the code then we can read and write the majority of words in English—even the long ones.

SOS (Spelling for Older Students) is a way to attempt to teach older students the code in an age appropriate fashion. It is designed to be presented as quickly as possible over six or seven weeks as a concerted effort to remediate reluctant or struggling readers and writers.

With older students, it is important to screen them first to find out what level they're working at and provide activies to address the gaps. If you make the sessions fast and fun, include competitiveness, build in rewards, games and prizes, students will join in. You can use the SPELD SA free synthetic phonic assessment materials to find out which letter sounds they know

The following 27 lessons introduce the sounds s, a, t, i, p, n, (c, k, ck,) e, h, r, m, d, g, o, u, l, f, b, ai, j, oa, ie, ee, or, z, w, ng, nk, oo(book), oo(room), v, x, y and various ways of recording them. 8 new lessons will be loaded on to the website shortly.

These Powerpoints are provided at no cost.

Download First: Operating Instructions

Please click on the links below to save the files you wish to view to your computer. 

Each lesson is in a PowerPoint format, the teaching notes are in a PDF format.


SOS - Set 1: s, a, t, p, i, n

SOS Lesson 1: S s

Lesson 1 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 1

Lesson 1 Handwriting


SOS Lesson 2: A a

Lesson 2 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 2

Lesson 2 Handwriting

Lesson 1 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 3: T t

Lesson 3 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 3

Lesson 3 Handwriting

Lesson 2 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 4: P p

Lesson 4 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 4

Lesson 4 Handwriting

Lesson 3 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 5: I i

Lesson 5 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 5

Lesson 5 Handwriting

Lesson 4 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 6: N n

Lesson 6 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 6

Lesson 6 Handwriting

Lesson 5 Tricky Words revision





SOS Test Week 1


SOS - Set 2: c, k, ck, e, h, r, m, d

SOS Lesson 7: c k ck

Lesson 7 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 7

Lesson 7 Handwriting

Lesson 6 Tricky Words revision 

SOS Lesson 8: E e

Lesson 8 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 8

Lesson 8 Handwriting

Lesson 7 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 9: H h

Lesson 9 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 9

Lesson 9 Handwriting

Lesson 8 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 10: R r

Lesson 10 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 10

Lesson 10 Handwriting

Lesson 9 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 11: M m

Lesson 11 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 11

Lesson 11 Handwriting

Lesson 10 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 12: D d

Lesson 12 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 12

Lesson 12 Handwriting

Lesson 11 Tricky Words revision





SOS Test Week 2


SOS - Set 3: g, o, u, l, f, b

SOS Lesson 13: G g & O o

Lesson 13 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 13

Lesson 13 Handwriting

Lesson 12 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 14: U u

Lesson 14 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 14

Lesson 14 Handwriting

Lesson 13 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 15: L l & F f

Lesson 15 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 15

Lesson 15 Handwriting

Lesson 14 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 16: B b

Lesson 16 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 16

Lesson 16 Handwriting

Lesson 15 Tricky Words revision





SOS Test Week 3


SOS - Set 4: ai, j, oa, ie, ee, or

SOS Lesson 17: ai, ay, a-e

Lesson 17 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 17

Lesson 17 Handwriting

Lesson 16 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 18: J J

Lesson 18 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 18

Lesson 18 Handwriting

Lesson 17 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 19: oa

Lesson 19 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 19

Lesson 19 Handwriting

Lesson 18 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 20: ie

Lesson 20 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 20

Lesson 20 Handwriting

Lesson 19 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 21: ee

Lesson 21 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 21

Lesson 21 Handwriting

Lesson 20 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 22: or, aw

Lesson 22 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 22

Lesson 22 Handwriting

Lesson 21 Tricky Words revision





SOS Test Week 4




SOS - Set 5: z, w, ng, nk, oo(book), oo(room), v

SOS Lesson 23: Z z & W w

Lesson 23 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 23

Lesson 23 Handwriting

Lesson 22 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 24: ng & nk

Lesson 24 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 24

Lesson 24 Handwriting

Lesson 23 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 25: oo(book), oo(room)

Lesson 25 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 25

Lesson 25 Handwriting

Lesson 24 Tricky Words revision

SOS Lesson 26: V v

Lesson 26 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 26

Lesson 26 Handwriting

Lesson 25 Tricky Words revision

 SOS Test Week 5

SOS - SET 6: y, x, ch, sh, th(think),th(that)

SOS Lesson 27: X x & Y y

Lesson 27 instructions

Worksheet Lesson 27

Lesson 27 Handwriting

Lesson 27 Tricky Words revision




You are able to purchase a disk with 30 lessons made in Easiteach (PC only) for $10 plus postage. Place your order by contacting our office on 8431 1655 or emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The disc also holds a copy of the PowerPoint version.



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