Phonics Curriculum Statement
Intent: what are we trying to achieve in our curriculum?
It is our intent at St Bede’s that phonics will be delivered via a highly structured programme of daily lessons across Foundation Stage, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2. The phonics programme matches the expectations of the national curriculum and early learning goals. Phonics sessions are taught during whole class sessions with the teacher and according to children’s phonic awareness and development. A synthetic approach to the teaching of phonics is followed. Each session provides an opportunity for children to revisit previous experiences, be taught new skills, practise together and apply what they have learned.
Implementation: how is our curriculum delivered?
- Nursery begin with Phase 1 of Letters and Sounds. This provides a range of listening activities through play in order to develop their listening skills. Progress is tracked at the end of each term.
- Reception, phonics is taught following the sequence of sounds set out in ‘Letters and Sounds’. Children are encouraged to listen to and for sounds in the environment. Introduced to Phase 2 which marks the start of systematic phonic work. Grapheme-phoneme correspondence is also introduced.
- Daily phonics sessions teach children learn how to ‘read’ the sounds in words and how those sounds can be written down.
- Children also practise reading and spelling ‘tricky words’.
- Once children can blend sounds together to read words, they practise reading books that match the phonics and the ‘tricky words’ they know.
- Phase 3 completes the teaching of the alphabet and then moves on to cover sounds represented by more than one letter, learning one representation for each of the 44 phonemes. At this stage just one grapheme (spelling) is given for each phoneme.
- When children become secure they continue into Phase 4 where they start to read and spell words containing adjacent consonants. No new phonemes are introduced at this phase.
- It is expected that children will enter Phase 5 as they begin year 1, broadening their knowledge of graphemes and phonemes for use in reading and spelling. They will learn new graphemes and alternative pronunciations for these and graphemes they already know, where relevant.
- It is expected that children entering Year 2 will start Phase 6 which develops a variety of spelling strategies including homophones (word specific spellings) eg see/ sea, spelling of words with prefixes and suffixes, doubling and dropping letters where necessary.
- The school spelling programmes complement the phonics learning from Reception through to the end of KS2. The spelling of high frequency and tricky words are taught continuously throughout the phases.
Children’s progress in phonics is continually monitored and assessed.
The national Phonics Screening Check is performed in June of Year 1. Prior to this, the Year 1 phonics workshop gives parents information about how they can support their children at home with phonics. The purpose of the screening check is to confirm that all children have learned phonic decoding to an age-appropriate standard. The children who did not meet the required standard for the check in year 1, enter again in year 2 with additional support.
As children enter KS2 provision is made for those children still requiring daily phonics.
The impact of high quality teaching and learning alongside a structured phonics programme allows pupils to:
• Recognise sounds, apply knowledge, skills and understanding across a range of curriculum areas.
• The ability to decode and read unfamiliar words
• Increase fluency, accuracy and understanding in reading
• Improve comprehension skills.
You can find some useful links on Phonics below:
This video shows how to say the letter sounds:
This video shows how to read the tricky words:
Phonics Play – The free area of the Phonics Play website is filled with free interactive games, phonics planning, assessment ideas and printable resources. There are many ideas and lots of advice to support parents in helping your children learn to read.
Letters and Sounds – you can use these free resources to help support the DfES Letters and Sounds phonics programme. If you’re new to Letters and Sounds and want to find out what it’s all about, visit What is Letters and Sounds to find out more.
Reading Books and Schemes: We use a variety of books to support reading in school such as Oxford Reading Tree, Sunshine Books and Big Cat. The school reading scheme through which we teach phonics is Bug Club Phonics.