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Reading, Phonics and Spelling

The school follows letters and sounds for its phonics teaching, engaging the children with a range of creative teaching strategies.


During the first few weeks in Reception, children begin to learn single letter sounds and the accompanying Jolly Phonics action. There are lots of opportunities to develop good speaking and listening skills, identify and distinguish everyday sounds, play with sounds and rhyme, and share quality reading materials in groups through big and small books and online. During transition visits children will get a picture book to take home and we ask parents/carers to share the book and take turns telling the story. When these are returned staff share the book and give the child the opportunity to select a new book. This early reading and phonics knowledge are then built on. The school uses Letters and Sounds as a basis for phonics teaching. By the end of September most children are ready to begin working at Phase 2 of Letters and Sounds; 'they will have experienced a wealth of listening activities, they will be able to distinguish between speech sounds and many will be able to blend and segment words orally.’ The purpose of this phase is to teach at least 19 letters, and move children on from oral blending and segmentation to blending and segmenting with letters. By the end of this phase many children should be able to read and spell some VC words (it, at, on, up) and some CVC words (man, pot, sit, cup, pen). They will also be taught to read some 'tricky words'; the, to, go, no. By the end of EYFS, most children will have completed Phase 4 of Letters and Sounds.


Throughout Reception, teachers will spend time with each child assessing their phonics knowledge and gauging their 'readiness for reading'. Teachers hear every child read at least once each week with identified children being heard read on a more frequent basis. We encourage children to read with their grown up each evening, and parents/carers are asked to fill in their child's reading record to show this has happened and make a relevant comment. The first few stages of reading books are decodable and linked with the letters and sounds the children are learning/have learnt. The reading schemes in place are Oxford Reading Tree (Floppy's Phonics, Project X) Jolly Phonics, Big Cat Phonics and Junior Learning’s Letters and Sounds books. As they are ready, in preparation for Key Stage 1, and to develop a wider range of reading skills, children move onto reading books that provide additional challenge. During the summer terms children begin to access weekly Guided Reading sessions. These sessions are led by a teacher and give opportunities for groups of children of a similar reading ability to read the same book individually but as part of a group.


Key Stage 1

In Key Stage 1 the predominant reading scheme is Oxford Reading Tree. This is supplemented with Project X books, Songbirds and others. There is a wide range of fiction and non-fiction books, and whilst children are encouraged to read Stages in order of sections it is important that they read books that they are interested in. Children are heard read by a Teacher or Teaching Assistant at least once a week, with identified children being heard read on a more frequent or even on a daily basis. All children will have a relevant reading book in their book bag from the first day of term, this will have been selected from prior assessments. Children continue to be encouraged to read every evening and parents are asked to record this in their reading record. All children in Key Stage 1 take part in daily Guided Reading sessions. During Year 1 and Year 2 it is expected that most children will complete Phase 6 of Letters and Sounds and begin spelling lessons.



Key Stage 2

In Key Stage 2 children will continue with daily spelling lessons, which build on their phonic knowledge. These sessions continue to follow the review, teach, practice, apply format used in phonic sessions. They are taught spelling patterns and are tested at the end of the week based on the pattern. Spelling journals are used to explore explicit spelling strategies e.g. syllables, phonics, etymology and mnemonics. Children continue to be encouraged to read every evening and parents are asked to record this in their reading record. Daily Guided Reading sessions also continue.


If you require any further information about any of the above please talk to a member of staff, or log onto:



Key Stage 1

Through Reception and Key Stage 1 the children are taught Phonics following 'Letters and Sounds'



A really useful guide to parents can be found at:



The children follow the National curriculum book-band scheme scheme in their reading. As they move towards the end of Year 2 they progress onto Scholastic Reading Pro and lexile levels in preparation for moving up to the Juniors.


KS2 Reading


In KS2, children practice key reading skills each day during our 'whole class' reading sessions. \these sessions build on the knowledge and skills taught at KS1 in reading and phonics sessions. Children are exposed to 'age related' texts (poems, stories, videos, music etc.), where they explore language, authorial intentions, make predictions and retrieve key facts. Often we link these text to our main class topic, but at times use those of interest to the children. 


To support the teaching of reading, we use reading 'VIPERS', which ensures the children cover the whole range of the KS2 reading curriculum. This stands for:

  • Vocabulary
  • Inference
  • Prediction
  • Explanation
  • Retrieval 
  • Summarise/Sequence.


Children complete a range of differentiated tasks to develop these key skills, across a range of different genres. 


Children who require additional support are listened to reading frequently and are provided with additional reading boosters, such as Reading Detectives, 'Switch On' reading and acceleread.


For further information, please contact your child's class teacher.


Spelling at KS2 


In KS2, children also complete daily spelling sessions. They have the opportunity to develop their phonological knowledge from KS1, while also considering how spellings often follow patterns, and learning words which do not.


We teach spelling through games, handwriting and through low-stakes tests, to ensure children have a secure knowledge of key spellings. We also ensure the children are taught what the words mean and link this into our taught sessions.


Pupils who require additional support when they enter KS2 also receive daily phonics boosters as required. 


Children are also taught their associated year group word lists, which are attached below for your reference.

Year 3 and 4 Spelling List