At St Andrew’s Church of England Primary School, we are using the highly recommended ‘Letters and Sounds’ synthetic phonics scheme produced by the Department for Education.
Children actively engage in the practical activities and the multi sensory way the scheme is delivered.
Phonics teaching is part of the daily routine at St Andrew’s and begins in Nursery and continues throughout Key Stage One.
The phonics scheme is organised into phases:
This paves the way for systematic learning of phonics and begins in Nursery.
Teachers plan activities to help children to listen attentively to sounds around them, such as the sounds of their toys and to sounds in spoken language. They teach a wide range of nursery rhymes and songs.
In this phase children will consolidate their learning from phase 1, including ‘sound-talk’. They will also be taught the phonemes (sounds) for a number of letters (graphemes). They will be using picture clues, hand movements or songs to help them remember.
The purpose of this phase is to teach more graphemes, most of which are made of two letters, for example, ‘oa’ as in boat. Children practise blending and segmenting a wider set of CVC (consonant, vowel, consonant) words, for example, fizz, chip, sheep, light. They will begin to read more tricky words such as ‘I, no, go, the, into’ and spell some of them. They will frequently read and write words in phrases and sentences.
Children continue to practise previously learned graphemes and phonemes and learn how to read and write:
CVCC words: tent, damp, toast, chimp and CCVC words: swim, plum, sport, cream, spoon They will be learning more tricky words and continue to read and write sentences
When children enter phase 5 they will be able to read and spell more confidently. The purpose of this phase is for children to broaden their knowledge of graphemes and phonemes for use in reading and spelling. They will learn new graphemes and alternative pronunciation for these. We continue to teach through a variety of multi-sensory sentence and word games.
In KS1, children take home spellings linked to the new phonemes that they are learning in class. This is further supported by a phonics reading scheme, where the children can practise reading the sounds they have been working on.
Letters and sounds links
DSR- Daily Supported Reading
Alongside daily phonics teaching, Year 1 children St Andrew’s take part in a new reading programme called Daily Supported Reading.
This programme, which runs 4 days a week, involves all Year 1 children reading daily with an adult in very small groups.
The books used for these sessions have been bought especially for DSR. These high quality texts use lots of repetitive words and promote reading for pleasure.