School Phonics Teaching
Teaching across the school follows the Letters and Sounds framework. The Jolly Phonics scheme is a fun and multisensory synthetic phonics method which is used in Early Years to complement Letters and Sounds teaching.
Early Years Foundation Stage
Children in Nursery begin Phase 1 phonics during the Autumn term. Phase 1 supports the development of rhythm, rhyme differentiating sounds in the environment, alliteration, oral blending skills and oral segmenting skills.
Phase 2 is introduced later in the year at the point at which it is assessed to be appropriate for the current group of children. Phase 2 develops the children’s grapheme-phoneme correspondence, starting with initial sounds and supporting with segmenting and blending skills.
In Reception, a daily phonics session take place in group or class groups and covers phases 2-4 during the year. Phases 2 – 4 consolidate the graphemes taught in Phase 2 and introduce new digraphs and trigraphs.
Phase 2-4 also introduces high frequency words and tricky words that can not be broken down phonetically.
Home/School books support children with learning the sets of ‘tricky’ words. It is important parents and carers focus on comprehension when reading with their child at home as we do in school. Reading books reflect the phase that the children will be on.
Targeted provision provides additional learning opportunities for children who are working below their age-appropriate phonics phase
Key Stage One
In Years 1 and 2, every day starts with group or class phonics sessions.
Year 1 revise the phases of the previous years and start phase 5 after the first half term break. Phase 5 introduces the rest of the alternative spellings of the phonemes and common exception words.
In the summer term, all Year 1 children are assessed using the National Screening Check. The check includes a mixture of real words and ‘alien’ or nonsense words. The children must use their phonic skills to decode the alien words as they cannot be read from memory. A pre-screening takes place at the beginning of Year 1 to identify children who would benefit with daily targeted provision. Those children who do not reach the expected standard at the end of Year 1 are retested at the end of Year 2.
Year 2 revise phases of the previous years and then focus on phase 6. This phase focuses on spelling, punctuation and grammar, which are also targeted in literacy lessons. From May 2016, children in Year 2 have been required to take a National test that covers these areas.
To promote Phonics at home parents have access to workshops led by educators to observe how to teach new phonemes and the daily Phonics structure which takes place at school.
Targeted provision provides additional learning opportunities for children who are working below their age-appropriate phonics phase. These include Fisher Family Trust and 5 minute Phonics.
We use a range of reading scheme texts for individual and guided reading, which are colour coded using Book Bands and Reading Recovery levels. In addition to this, the children have access to a wide range of fiction and non-fiction texts from the class and school library. Children also have access to Oxford Reading Owl, an online library with the same colour coded band system.
Class teachers assess the children’s reading skills regularly so that we can ensure they are making good progress in both decoding words and understanding the text.
There is strong evidence linking reading for pleasure and educational outcomes, increased empathy, improved relationships with others and improved wellbeing. We provide many opportunities for children to foster a love of reading.
Storytelling skills support the development of vocabulary, confidence and imagination which support children to develop their own ideas for story writing.
As part of the home/school agreement, children are expected to read daily at home with parental support. Parents are given guidance and opportunities to attend workshops explaining how to support the development of reading skills at home.