Reading & Phonics


Phonics is a way of teaching children how to read and write. It helps children hear, identify and use different sounds that distinguish one word from another in the English language. Teaching children to blend the sounds of letters together helps them decode unfamiliar or unknown words by sounding them out.

We follow the Governments Guidance: Letters and Sounds which is a synthetic phonics scheme to support children’s reading. Systematic phonics instruction is the direct teaching of a set of letter-sound relationships in a clearly defined sequence. Children begin at Phase One which concentrates on developing children’s speaking and listening skills and lays the foundations for the phonic work which starts in Phases two to five.

By the end of the programme, children will reach Phase Six. The main aim for children is to develop their fluency as a reader and increase their accuracy when spelling.


Reading is a valuable, lifelong skill that intersects all areas of the curriculum. We develop our pupils through independent and shared reading as well as cross-curricular sessions which empower them to find pleasure in reading.

Children read individually, in small groups and as a whole class. Children also read with their ‘reading buddies’ each week which allows both older and younger children the opportunity to develop fluency as well as a sense of pride in their accomplishments as they become more positive about their ability to read, this in turn helps to improve their reading skills.

A variety of genres, both fiction and non-fiction are chosen at an appropriate level of ability for each child. As well as being able to read the text, children are encouraged to discuss the book, expressing their individual opinions of the content and ask and answer retrieval and inference questions of themselves and others.

More able readers will be asked to compare the themes and speculate on the tone of different texts. Children vote for the specific genre they want to see featured on our class bookshelf each half term to widen their interest in a range of books.

We use a range of literature from a variety of reading schemes such as Oxford Reading Tree, Floppy Phonics and Rising Stars. We also encourage children to select their own books from the school library and welcome suggestions regarding the texts they would like to read in future. This is supported by our local link with the ‘Stripey Badger’ book shop who has visited us to show-case books that are current and that engage the children’s interests.

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