Phonics and Reading
At WGPS we believe reading is essential for academic success but, more importantly, we value reading as a key life skill, and are dedicated to enabling our pupils to become lifelong readers. We aim to promote reading for pleasure, and hope to instil this love of reading in all children through the culture of our school.
Through our phonics curriculum we intend that our children will be able to:
- Have high quality phonics teaching, which provides children with critical skills to be able to read and write.
- To decode real and non-real words.
- Recognise and spell high frequency and common exception words.
- Enable children to read fluently and become confident writers.
- To ensure the majority of Y1 pupils pass the phonics screening test (at least in line with national figures).
- Access differentiated phonics and weekly spellings according to pupils needs.
We have carefully ensured that our phonics teaching informs our reading scheme at WGPS. Pupils in EY and KS1 are given reading books each week, which directly link to the phonics sounds they are being taught so that phonics knowledge is consolidated.
It is our intention to ensure that, by the end of their primary education, all pupils are able to read fluently, and with confidence, in any subject in their forthcoming secondary education by ensuring all children have the appropriate word reading and comprehension skills.
We follow Letters and Sounds as our phonics scheme, which supports the teaching of early reading at WGPS.
This is built upon by following the objectives for reading as set out in the National Curriculumm.
At Wooburn Green, phonics and reading are embedded throughout the entire curriculum. EY and KS1 pupils participate in daily phonics sessions and pupils in Year1-Year 6 participate in daily story time and weekly guided reading sessions. KS2 pupils also engage in whole class shared reading sessions.
At Wooburn Green Primary School, we have developed an engaging approach following the scheme of Letters and Sounds (in line with the National Curriculum). We aim to create effective and engaging lessons, which motivate the children. Each lesson is carried out in the same structure of Revisit/Review – Introduce and Engage – Teach – Practise – Apply.
What does a phonics session look like at Wooburn Green?
Revisit and review – Go through flashcards or allow the children to play a quickfire game to practise something they have learned before and help build their confidence.
Introduction and engagement - The teacher will explain to the children what they will be learning today and get them enthusiastic and motivated for the session. This could be by showing pictures or objects with the sound in and getting the children to guess or find the sound.
Teach - The children will be taught a new phoneme/grapheme or a new skill. This will be taught in a fun multisensory way and may well involve: writing sounds/ words, songs, actions, pictures, puppets, writing giant letters in the air, using different voices, moving around the room, treasure hunts.
Practise - The children should be able to read a variety of real words with the sound in. They should have the opportunity to write words with the sound and use phonics buttons to represent the sounds. This could be done by using pictures, missing words in sentences, fill in the missing sounds, make words with the sound using letters displayed. The sound or word should be visibly displayed at all times during the lesson.
Apply - The children will have a go at reading or writing sentences of words that involve the new sound/word they have just learned. Writing should be completed in Phonics book. Games are available with real words and alien words.
- Children expected to write in book each lesson (sound/words/sentence).
- Phonics books to be changed on Tuesday and Thursday.
- Spellings given to children on Monday based on sounds they have learnt and common exception words.
- Spelling tests completed on a Friday
Whole School Phonics Progression
In order to achieve the intended outcomes, we teach the National Curriculum objectives, which are mapped out through a clear skills and knowledge progression. This ensures that skills and knowledge are built on year by year and sequenced appropriately to maximise learning for all children.
The text-based approach continues in KS2 English lessons, which is again supported by regularly guided reading sessions and whole class shared reading sessions. Here, specific curriculum objectives and gaps in children’s knowledge or understanding can be addressed by class teachers in a focused format.
We encourage reading for pleasure through children having a choice of challenging and enriching texts as well as building in time for children to read independently and as part of a whole class. All children have daily opportunities to read a variety of material in school, including regularly with an adult. Each class in KS2 has a class reading book which allows teachers share their own love of reading with their pupils.
In Reception and Key Stage One, all children will be informally assessed throughout sessions and future phonics work planned accordingly. All children will be formally assessed at the end of each terms and additional screenings will take place at 3 set occasions throughout year.
The assessments will cover the following areas:
• grapheme phoneme correspondence knowledge;
• segmenting and blending;
• reading of tricky words;
• reading of non-words;
• spelling of real words;
• spelling of high frequency words;
• spelling of common exception words.
At the end of Year 1, in June, it is a statutory requirement for all children to complete the Year 1 Phonics Screening Check.
Regular formative assessment is carried by teachers during guided reading and shared reading sessions using curriculum checklists to identify gaps in learning. Summative assessment of reading is also carried at least once per term (depending on year group) following the PIXL assessment schedule with detailed analysis of results using question level analyses to again identify gaps in learning to be later addressed by teachers.