At Kingsley Primary School we are passionate about ensuring that all children become confident and enthusiastic readers and writers. We believe that phonics provides the foundations of learning to make the development into fluent reading and writing easier. Through phonics children learn to segment words to support their spelling ability and blend sounds to read words. The teaching of phonics is of high priority.
At Kingsley Primary School we believe that consistency across the school, in our approach to teaching phonics, is key to its success and this is why we have recently introduced the engaging Monster Phonics. This is an award-winning multi-sensory phonics programme mapped against Letters and Sounds and the Key Stage 1 Spelling Curriculum. This scheme groups the different letters and sounds into ‘phases’ which are then taught in a systematic way. Children are grouped from Reception to Year 2 to access the appropriate Phase work to enable them to make rapid progress to build on the letters and sounds that they already know. Our sessions are fast paced, creative and fun as this is what we believe the key to effective phonics teaching and learning is. Our younger nursery children are immersed in a multi-sensory, language rich environment with lots of stories, songs, reading, communication and language and sounds work.
Children who do not pass the phonics screening check in year 2 are tracked and targeted through small group intervention in year 3, as are children in year 1 working below Phase 4.
In addition to this, teachers ensure each child’s home reader is fully decodable so that children can practice and embed their skills, as well as allowing home reading to be a celebration of children reading to parents independently.
We have invested in ‘Phonics Tracker’ which is instant assessment and tracking program and this is used by staff to carefully track phonics progress across Reception, KS1 and Year 3.
Through systematic and engaging multi-sensory phonics teaching, our aim is for children to become fluent readers by the end of key stage 1. Attainment in phonics is measured by the Phonics Screening Test at the end of Year 1 and we track children continuously using ‘Phonics Tracker’ to ensure that we are identifying any weaknesses and putting in the correct support for each child. We believe that reading attainment is the key to all learning and so the impact of our phonics curriculum is embedded across the entire curriculum for our children.
Reception High Frequency Words
Year 1 Spelling Curriculum Overview
Phonics Cover Sheets
|Nursery Cover Sheet||Reception Cover Sheet||Yr1 Cover Sheet||Yr2 Cover Sheet||Yr3 Cover Sheet|
Phonics Explained for Parents
Phonics is a way of teaching children to read by linking sounds (phonemes) and the symbols that represent them (graphemes, or letter groups). Phonics is an early reading approach used by all schools in the UK.
A phoneme is the smallest unit of sound. The phonemes used when speaking English are:
All Year one children are formally assessed in June by an unseen government Phonic Screening Check. The children are asked to decode forty words, twenty real words and twenty ‘alien words’. At Kingsley, we ensure we make the phonics screening check a relaxed and fun experience for the children. Most do not even realise they are taking a test! Results of this screening check are reported to parents. Any child who does not reach the expected standard in Year One will receive further support and repeat the check in Year Two.
Our pupils understand and use the below terms daily in their phonics lessons. These words, however, may be unknown to most parents who perhaps learnt to read in a very different way, and it might leave you feeling lost and in the dark on how to support your child in learning to read at home. Here are some explanations of key words:
Pure Sounds – pronouncing the sounds of letters and combinations of letters correctly, for example not saying ‘muh’ but ‘mmmmm’. Avoid trying to say an ‘uh’ at the end of the sound.
Oral blending – This involves hearing sounds and being able to put them together to make a word. For example an adult says ‘b-u-s’ and the child says ‘bus’.
Blending – children see a word, say those individual sounds in the word and then put those sounds together.
Segmenting – Breaking up the word into its sounds. This is vital for spelling and writing words.
Phoneme – The smallest unit of sound. There are approximately 44 in the English language to learn.
Grapheme – the written letter that represents the sound.
Digraph – two letters that make one sound, for example oo, oa, ee
Trigraph – three letters that make one sound, for example ear, igh, air
Split digraph – This is when a digraph (ie) has been split and a consonant has been placed in the middle. The ‘ie’ is still making the sound despite a letter in the middle. There are five split digraphs to learn
i_e like in time
a_e like in cake
o_e like in joke
e_e like in theme
u_e like in tube
Tricky words – These are words within each of the phonics phases that cannot be decoded and sounded out. These words just need to be learnt by sight. We call them ‘tricky words’.
High Frequency words – these are words that occur most often in books and stories. They can be both decodable or tricky words.
Alien Words – Words that can be decoded but are made up and do not make sense. These words really test phonics skills. If a child has good phonic knowledge they will be able to decode both real and alien words.
Sound buttons – a button drawn or placed under each individual grapheme. Every time the button is pressed your child makes the sound and then blends all the sounds together to read the words. The word ‘cat’ would have three dot sounds buttons and ‘moon’ would also have three but the ‘oo’ would have a longer underneath.
CVC – Consonant, vowel, consonant. These can be simple three letter words like ‘mat’ but also the word ‘rain’ is a CVC word as the ‘ai’ is a vowel digraph in the middle. This is the same for words like moon, chain, sheet. The ‘ch’ and ‘sh’ are a consonant digraph and one sound. The word ‘boy’, for example, even though has 3 letters is not a CVC word as it only has two phonemes b-oy. This is the same for words like cow, tie, say.
Alliteration – words that begin with the same phoneme (snake, sock, scissors, star)
Letter formation – the way each individual letter is formed. Children will need to learn where they need to start for each letter
Useful Websites and Documents
Lots of phonics games –http://www.crickweb.co.uk/ks2literacy.html#compound%20words
Phonics Play- https://www.phonicsplay.co.uk/ParentsMenu.htm
Phonics Games- https://www.ictgames.com/mobilePage/literacy.html