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Firefly Press

Sound Waves Student Book - 2022 Edition


Book 1
Book 2
Book 3
Book 4
Book 5
Book 6

Sound Waves is a whole-school synthetic phonics program based on the sounds of Australian English.


The new and improved Sound Waves Student Book includes all student activities for both phases of the Foundation program. It contains:

  • Colour photos and beautiful bespoke illustrations
  • Carefully sequenced phonemic awareness and phonic activities
  • Pre-writing and writing practice

Sound Waves Student Books 1-6 engages students in stimulating activities that:

  • Explore phonemes
  • Identify and discover graphemes
  • Develop an awareness of spelling patterns
  • Develop strategies for spelling
  • Explore and extend vocabulary.


Sound Waves is a systematic synthetic phonics and word study program proven to effectively teach spelling and reading skills.

Synthetic phonics

The Sound Waves synthetic phonics approach focuses on the process of synthesising (i.e. taking small parts and putting them together to form a whole). It uses a sound-to-letter strategy which acknowledges that sounds can be represented more than one way in written form. This approach focuses first on phonemes – the basic units of sound. It then explores the letters that represent these sounds and how they can be put together to form written words.


Word study

Successful spelling relies on understanding that words can be constructed from meaningful parts such as prefixes, suffixes and Greek and Latin roots. Sound Waves provides everything you need to explicitly teach students the meaning and spelling of these word parts, which allows them to read and spell complex words correctly.

Explicit teaching

Explicit teaching is a highly effective approach for introducing phoneme-grapheme relationships, spelling strategies and language concepts which is why it forms the basis of all Sound Waves lessons.

Whole School Approach

Improve results with whole school consistency

The Sound Waves program is fully resourced from Foundation to Year 6, building successful spellers across your whole school. Sound Waves students don’t stop learning phonics in Year 3, but hone their literacy skills as they progress through upper primary. The spiral curriculum of Sound Waves offers students multiple opportunities, both within and across year levels, to conquer difficult words and concepts. It also extends learning with Extension Word Lists and Super Challenges.


Explore Sound Waves in a variety of ways and keep your students engaged. We cater for different abilities and different learning styles.

Differentiation for all students

Sound Waves activities and List Words are graded from easy to difficult, creating real differentiation opportunities for all students in your classroom. Extension List Words and Super Challenge Black Line Masters are perfect for advanced students and fast finishers.

Ideal for multi-age classrooms

The Sound Waves program is structured to help you manage multi-age classrooms. Student Books 1–6, for example, all feature the same Sound Unit on the same page. This makes it easy to teach the focus sound to the whole class, then direct students to work on the same Sound Unit with words and concepts appropriate to their level.

Curriculum Matches

Sound Waves is written specifically to cover your curriculum.

The Australian Curriculum outlines the importance of phonics and phonemic awareness in learning how to spell and read. Sound Waves has the Curriculum covered.