Our Phonics curriculum aims to ensure pupils at Wyburns Primary School leave Key Stage 1 as confident, fluid readers. We aim to create a love of reading throughout our phonics curriculum alongside reading in other subjects. We believe phonics is the foundation of a successful reader who draws upon their sound knowledge to decode unfamiliar words. Phonics will be continued into Key Stage 2 for those children who benefit from extra support.
We follow the Letters and Sounds programme, interspersed with other phonics techniques where appropriate, such as Jolly Phonics. The phases are broken down as follows:
Phase One concentrates on developing children's speaking and listening skills and lays the foundations for the phonic work which starts in Phase 2. The emphasis during Phase 1 is to get children attuned to the sounds around them and ready to begin developing oral blending and segmenting skills. Phase 1 is divided into seven aspects.
Each aspect contains three strands:
In Phase 2, letters and their sounds are introduced one at a time. A set of letters are taught each week. The children are taught the name of each letter, the phoneme (the sound it makes) and the grapheme (how it is written). The children begin to learn to blend and segment to help begin reading and spelling. This will begin with simple words. During each phase the children will also learn a number of ‘tricky’ words, which are commonly used words that are not phonetically decodable.
By the time children reach Phase 3, they will already be able to blend and segment words containing the 19 letters taught in Phase 2. Over the twelve weeks which Phase 3 is expected to last, twenty-five new phonemes are introduced (one at a time), some of which will be digraphs and trigraphs (2 letters or 3 letters that together make one unit of sound).
By Phase 4, children will be able to represent each of the 42 phonemes (sounds) with a grapheme. They will blend phonemes to read CVC (consonant, vowel, consonant) words and segment CVC words for spelling. They will also be able to read two syllable words that are simple. They will be able to read all the tricky words learnt so far and will be able to spell some of them. This phase consolidates all the children have learnt in the previous phases.
Children will be taught new graphemes and alternative pronunciations for these graphemes, as well as graphemes they already know. They will begin to learn to choose the appropriate grapheme when spelling. For example – ai, ay or a_e (rain, play, name)
In phase 6, the focus is on learning spelling rules for word endings (these are known as suffixes). The children will learn how words change when you add certain letters. There are 12 different suffixes taught.
Children begin learning phonics as soon as they enter EYFS starting with Phase 1 and continuing right the way through to Phase 6 in Year 2. Children will continue phonics into Year 3 if extra support is needed.
Our phonics sessions are delivered in 20-minute slots daily. Phonics lessons are systematic, fast paced, fun and highly structured with high expectations of our young readers.
Each session gives an opportunity for children to revisit their previous learning, be taught new skills, practise and apply what they have learnt.
Our reading scheme books match phonic ability so that they can be read at home as well as school. The children can change their book whenever they need- children chose their own reading books from their phonics phase starting in Year 1.
Parents are invited to our yearly ‘Rocking Reading and Writing Workshop’ where they can gain a clear understanding of how Phonics is used to support early reading.
Teachers and LSAs are fully trained in phonics teaching and frequent monitoring from the phonics lead ensures high quality teaching. Teachers also observe and learn from each other to share best practice.
Children have a small phonics book in Key Stage 1. These are for new sounds and spellings that the children can access at any time.
Each classroom has a Phonics Working Wall which children can refer to throughout the day.
Staff at Wyburns incorporate a range of phonics resources into their lesson. They aim to make their sessions as fun as possible using movement, games and computing in each session.
Our ‘Topical Spelling’ programme compliments the phonics phases and this begins in Year 1 with children having weekly spellings.
Children have reading buddies who listen to particular focus children in the class each day.
We have a Phonics Screening Check in Year 1 and those who didn’t meet this will revisit in Year 2.
Interventions are used to ensure all children are making age expected progress particularly focusing on Pupil Premium children.
Pupils of Wyburns look forward to their daily phonics sessions and become enthusiastic, fluent readers. Vigorous assessment means that sounds are not missed and all children are given the best start with their early reading skills.
Are there any words your child is finding difficult to spell or read?
Put these words on post it notes and hide them around your house. You could hide them in your fridge, under their bed or even in their coat pockets.
When you child finds these words they have to read it or write it down.
Perhaps, once they have found 10 they could get a special reward.