Reading & Phonics
Reading - Implementation
We deliver phonics through Little Wandle Letters and Sounds revised. In Reception, we build from 10-minute lessons, with additional daily oral blending games, to the full-length lesson as quickly as possible. Each Friday, we review the week’s teaching to help children become fluent readers. Children make a strong start in Reception: teaching begins in Week 2 of the Autumn term. Children in Reception are taught to read and spell words using Phase 2 and 3 GPCs, and words with adjacent consonants (Phase 4) with fluency and accuracy.
Children in Year 1 review Phase 3 and 4 and are taught to read and spell words using Phase 5 GPCs with fluency and accuracy. Daily Keep-up lessons ensure every child learns to read. Any child who needs additional practice has daily Keep-up support, taught by a fully trained adult. 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.
We timetable daily phonics lessons for any child in Year 2 or 3 who is not fully fluent at reading or has not passed the Phonics screening check. These children urgently need to catch up, so the gap between themselves and their peers does not widen. We use the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised assessments to identify the gaps in their phonic knowledge and teach to these using the Keep-up resources – at pace.
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. These short, sharp lessons last 10 minutes and take place at least three times a week.
We teach children to read through reading practice sessions three times a week. These are taught by a fully trained adult to small groups of approximately six children and use books matched to the children’s secure phonic knowledge. Each reading practice session has a clear focus, so that the demands of the session do not overload the children’s working memory. The reading practice sessions have been designed to focus on three key reading skills:
- prosody: teaching children to read with understanding and expression
- comprehension: teaching children to understand the text
Reading after phonics
‘Reading for pleasure is the single most important indicator of a child’s success.’ (OECD 2002)
We value quality time given to pupils to enjoy reading books of their choice this is usually daily at Key Stage 2 for approximately 20 minutes. Within this time lower attaining readers are heard by an adult using a text which is well matched to their reading ability (regular PM benchmarking and book banded books support this). In Early Years and Key Stage 1 class reads are used to broaden text exposure. Each class across the school has access to the school library on a weekly basis to support reading for enjoyment.