Phonics & Reading

Phonics Schemes

In Reception the children follow the “Jolly Phonics” scheme starting with phase 2 (SATPIN) and then progressing onto phase 3 ( digraphs and trigraphs.) Phonics is taught daily for 15 to 20 minutes. We use a combination of reading, writing and ICT games as strategies.

In Year 1 we assess how secure the children with the Phase 3 digraphs and trigraphs, and consolidate any gaps in the children’s knowledge. We will then move onto Phase 4 which is a revision of Phase 3 and also introduces consonant clusters and 2 syllable words. As in Reception we use a range of strategies from whole class daily teaching sessions with the class teacher to TA led interventions based on termly assessment.  We also use Phonics play as an ICT based resource. Finally we move onto Phase 5 of the Letters and Sounds programme which looks at alternative pronunciations of the digraphs and trigraphs learnt in Phase 3. Year 1 pupils do the Phonics screening in June of Year 1. They need to achieve 32/40 to pass the screening and are tested on the digraphs trigraphs taught in phases 3 .

In Year 2 we teach Letters and sounds 6 which is a grammar based programme. We also develop the skill of understanding and answering comprehensions in preparation for the SATS. Some year 2 children may need to re-visit the Phonic screening if they did not achieve the pass mark.

Reading Schemes

The pupils at St Mary’s follow a variety of reading schemes based on a progressive phonic knowledge. Children are exposed to a range of texts (fiction and non-fiction) to increase their vocabulary. In Reception and KS1 they are regularly heard read at school, and are encouraged to read at home 3 times a week. Parents are asked to record when they hear their child read.

In KS2 children still have access to reading schemes if they need to consolidate their decoding skills.  Children are encouraged to be independent readers and again parents are encouraged to record evidence of home reading.