Phonics and Reading
Phonics is taught to all children in EYFS and KS1 and to children who are identified as needing support in KS2. As a school we follow 'Letters and Sounds' as our guide document, and supplement this with different resources.
The sounds are introduced in sets during the first term of Reception, with emphasis on children quickly becoming able to read words containing the sounds they have learned. We follow Phonics Play plans, making use of interactive resources and practical activities. Children begin to blend words using these phonemes in their phonics sessions and apply this to their reading. We also use the 'Jolly Phonics' pictures and actions as they have proved to be the most effective in enabling children to learn their sounds and retain them.
Parents are introduced to phonics terminology and we encourage parents to use terms like 'blend' when hearing their child read at home.
Parents of Reception children are regularly updated via Tapestry (online learning journey) with the phonics sounds that are being learned in class.
In Squirrels, the children continue to learn from the 'Letters and Sounds' scheme, along with Phonics Play resources. They spend time working towards the phonics screening test and practising using their phonics in spelling, as well as reading.
As children begin to understand and develop their phonics knowledge, they begin to use the Big Cat Reading Scheme. This provides the children with a framework for reading which continues through the school, until children are fluent readers.
We follow a scheme of reading which follows different colours. Children work through the stage books at their own pace whilst being challenged and encouraged to improve. Once a child completes the White stage, they become a 'free reader'. This means that they are able to chose their books independently and away from the more structured scheme.
Children who reach this stage in Year 2 will be supported with further stage books before becoming a free reader.
Teachers, Teaching Assistants and adult helpers regularly hear readers. Children will read in school every week with an adult. They are encouraged to regularly read aloud with someone at home too.
At school, the children's reading will be monitored and assessed to ensure that they are making progress, gaining fluency, pace, volume and comprehension. Teachers will monitor the books that children are reading to make sure that the text is suitable for their level of need. They also assess children against key performance indicators for reading. This is done at the end of each half term.
Children take part in guided reading sessions in school. This could involve a small group of children reading the same text together, or a whole class reading session.
We have our own library in school. The new library is located next to the Badgers classroom and received significant updating, through fundraising, by the WSA. It houses a fantastic range of fiction and non-fiction books!
Every week, the children are given a chance to browse the library and borrow a book of their choice.