Phonics

 Intent

It is our intention at Fishponds Church of England Academy to provide pupils with a high-quality education in English that will teach pupils to speak, read and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others effectively.

Phonics will be emphasised in the early teaching of reading and writing to beginners when they start school. At Fishponds CE Academy, we are determined that all of our children will learn to read and write fluently as a result of the high-quality phonics teaching received throughout the Early Years Foundation Stage and Year 1.

 

Implementation

Phonics is taught as a way of decoding written letters and spoken sounds in the early stages of learning to read and write.

At Fishponds CE Primary School, we teach phonics using a systematic, synthetic approach that is both multi-sensory and engaging! Phonics teaching begins in the EYFS and we use the government-recommended 'Letters and Sounds' Programme alongside 'Jolly Phonics' to teach Phonics.

This teaches children to read and write by blending and segmenting the sounds in words together with learning a variety of high-frequency words and irregular words by sight. Phonics is taught using the ‘Review, Teach Practice, Apply’ sequence whereby in each session, children review previously learnt phonic skills and then taught a new phonic skill before practising and applying this skill through a fun activity that consolidates what they have learnt in the session.

‘Letters and Sounds’ split the phonic skills and knowledge that need to be learnt into six phases. Children are introduced to Phase 1 Phonics in Nursery when they are ready to do so. In Reception, children learn the phonic skills and knowledge set out in Phase 2, Phase 3 and Phase 4. Phase 5 of ‘Letter and Sounds’ is introduced in Year 1 and finally, our Year 2 teachers will teach Phase 6.

One of the ways children consolidate their phonic reading skills is with reading books that are sent home with each child on a regular basis. This book contains a mixture of phonetically decodable words, high-frequency words and irregular ‘tricky’ words. The book is matched to the phonic level of the child and provides the best amount of challenge to support their progress. Challenge is ensured through our Benchmarking Assessment (you can find further details of this on our ‘Reading’ page).

We are determined to ensure every child becomes a successful reader and writer through providing a wide range of exciting opportunities for children to develop fluency and confidence. Therefore, we encourage children to practise applying their phonic skills not only through explicit reading and writing tasks during phonic sessions, but also through a variety of engaging key stories and texts, through enhanced and continuous provision and child-led activities in play, as well as opportunities to read and write for pleasure and purpose, both in English and across the wider curriculum.

 

Assessment

The children’s progress in Phonics is tracked using a Phonics Tracker that has been uniquely developed within our school. It is designed to highlight where children are making expected or better than expected progress in Phonics, but also used to identify the areas where children may require more support. We use this tool to assess how we can best support every child to ensure they continue to make the best progress possible.

The children’s progress in Phonics is also assessed towards the end of Year 1 using the Year 1 Phonics Screening Check. This was introduced by the government in 2011-12. The screening is a statutory check of a child's understanding of phonics. The check combines a mixture of real and nonsense words, which the children read using their phonic knowledge. An example of the check published by the Department for Education can be found below: 

Sample Phonics Screening Material

Phonics Screening Results:

Year 1 Pass Rate Year 2 Pass Rate(Including resits)
2018/2019 90% 95%
2017/2018 92% 95%

 

 

Intervention

We are dedicated to ensuring each child leaves Fishponds CE Academy with a secure set of reading and writing skills. Therefore, we use our assessment to ensure children have the opportunity to access extra support in Phonics not only in Early Years and Key Stage One, but also beyond Key Stage One as well if necessary.

We achieve this by ensuring opportunities for flexible grouping in Phonics within each year group as necessary, so every child is given tailored support and challenge that will enable them to learn and progress to their full potential.

In addition, we run specific reading and writing interventions for those children who need extra support in Phonics. This includes interventions run by a a team of specialist Reading Assistants, a successful Spelling Stars Programme and trained support staff who run Precision programme. Each programme focuses on developing specific elements to consolidate, improve and boost their phonic knowledge and secure their reading and writing skills. The children receive support in group sessions or on a 1:1 basis and this is tailored to their needs. Children who receive the Pupil Premium, are guaranteed access to both Reading and Writing Interventions if they need to do so

We recognise that not all children make their best progress using phonics as a reading and writing strategy and we use our assessment to identify these children. Based on assessment, we can therefore provide alternative and/or additional strategies for those children to secure reading and writing skills tailored to their individual needs.

 

Impact

The impact of our teaching and assessment is that all of our children will learn to read and write fluently as a result of high-quality phonics teaching and assessment. Phonics will provide a foundation to reading and writing that will ensure that children learn to recognise phonemes and use them to segment and blend a variety of decodable words as well as develop speed and accuracy in reading and writing high-frequency and irregular words. This will enable each child to read and write with fluency and will ensure that children are able to master the skills to become confident fluent readers and writers.

 

Meetings:

EYFS Reception reading meeting Oct 2019.pdf

EYFS February Meeting

Year 1 Phonics Meeting

 

Resources:

If you would like any resources to support your child at home, please ask your class teacher or the school’s Phonics Lead.

Websites

Phonics Pronunciation Video - This video demonstrates how to pronounce pure sounds and the corresponding 'Jolly Phonics' actions

www.phonicsplay.co.uk/ParentsMenu - This website has lots of interactive phonics games, activities, ideas and resources to help your child learn to hear, recognise and read different sounds and words including nonsense words

http://www.ictgames.com  - This website also lots of phonics games, activities, ideas and resources which match to an objective. They will help your child with learning to recognise and read different sounds and words