The Teaching of Reading and Phonics
You can find more detail in our Long Term Curriculum Intent document for reading.
We believe that all our children can become fluent readers and writers. This is why we teach reading through Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised, which is a systematic and synthetic phonics programme. We start teaching phonics in Nursery/Reception and follow the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised progression, which ensures children build on their growing knowledge of the alphabetic code, mastering phonics to read and spell as they move through school. From Year 2 onwards, we use the No Nonsense Spelling scheme to build on children's knowledge.
We value reading as a crucial life skill. By the time children leave us, they read confidently for meaning and regularly enjoy reading for pleasure. Our readers are equipped with the tools to tackle unfamiliar vocabulary. We encourage our children to see themselves as readers for both pleasure and purpose. We have a range of books across the school representing diversity.
We begin to build the foundations for phonics in Nursery. This includes sharing stories and poems, a range of nursery rhymes and action rhymes and activities that develop focused listening and attention, including oral blending. We teach daily phonics lessons in Reception and Year 1 building from 10-minute to 30-minute sessions. Any child who needs additional practice has daily Keep-up support. Keep-up lessons match the structure of class teaching, and use the same procedures, resources and mantras, but in smaller steps with more repetition, so that every child secures their learning. Similar sessions are timetabled for any children in Year 2 who is not fully fluent at reading. If any child in Year 3 to 6 has gaps in their phonic knowledge when reading or writing, we plan phonics ‘catch-up’ lessons to address specific reading/writing gaps.
Reading practice sessions take place three times a week in EYFS and KS1 and guided reading sessions take place twice per week in KS2. We teach children to read through reading practice sessions three times a week. These focus on key reading skills of decoding, teaching children to read with understanding and expression and comprehension: teaching children to understand the text.
Decodable Little Wandle books are sent home for reading as well as a book to read for pleasure until children are confident in their phonics knowledge. Children then take home a book from our reading scheme made up of Big Cat and Oxford Reading Tree books.
We value reading for pleasure highly and work hard as a school to grow children's love for reading. We read to children every day and every classroom has an inviting book corner that encourages a love for reading. We curate these books and talk about them to entice children to read a wide range of books. Reading should be an enjoyable activity and this is something we actively encourage in our children; be it through author visits, Book Day events, older children ‘buddying up’ with younger children or adult modelling. Please help your child develop this love of reading at home by sharing a range of books.