Color serves multiple purposes:
- Words in Color uses color to simplify the ambiguities of English. Since each sound in English has has its own color on the word charts, the language starts to behave phonetically. This initial simplification can lead to more excitement and confidence about learning to read.
- Since students can see the sound each sign or group of signs should make, they can build their own criteria about how to read new words without asking the teacher. When there is confusion about how a word is read, the teacher can simply review the colors already learned and let the students unlock the code themselves. It is much more rewarding to discover the answer oneself than to be told by an authority.
- Lastly, color is used by students to create mental imagery, which helps in retention. This imagery is not just color, but the shapes as well -- color draws the eye to the different sounds within a word, and the different signs within each sound.