The study of phonics is at the centre of reading and writing at Warwick Road School. Phonics underpins, and is intrinsically linked to, early reading and writing in the Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1. As children progress in their phonic knowledge, they will move on from making letters and sounds to using and applying their knowledge across the curriculum.
We recognise that our children come from diverse language heritages and, upon joining our school, will be at different points in their journey towards mastery of reading and writing. In order to participate fully in British society, it is essential for our children to achieve fluency in reading and writing. This applies equally to the spoken and the written word. We believe that all children are capable of making good progress towards that objective and are committed to ensuring that they do so.
At Warwick Road Primary School, phonics is taught through the validated systematic synthetic phonics programme ‘Twinkl Phonics’. The Twinkl Phonics Programme offers a coherently planned sequence of lessons that supports the effective teaching of phonics within EYFS, KS1 and, where appropriate, KS2. The dynamic and engaging materials delivered ensure a clearly defined structure to the teaching of phonics. The direct teacher-led lessons enable all learners to develop and apply new skills while also providing opportunities to further apply these skills within fun and engaging activities and through continuous provision. The teaching PowerPoints, stories, games, additional texts and toolkits are meticulously planned to allow children to apply and practise phonics skills. The impact of using the complete Twinkl Phonics Programme as the basis of our phonics teaching within EYFS and KS1, will be for children to develop their phonics skills and knowledge through a systematic, synthetic approach, while covering the statutory requirements outlined in the 2014 National Curriculum. There are six overlapping levels taught from Nursery through to Year 2 (and as intervention within KS2 where appropriate).
In the Foundation Stage (Nursery and Reception) children will:
- Be taught in ability groups based on regular assessments and benchmarking.
- Be assessed on entry and grouped according to ability.
- Use communication, language, literacy and phonics during free flow sessions.
- Become immersed in an environment rich in print and possibilities for communication
- Read 1:1 during the first term, or until they are reading at pink level. Once children begin reading at pink level, they will participate in small group guided reading sessions.
- Plan an environment that reflects the importance of phonics, reading and writing through a range of activity, signs, notices and books.
At Key Stage One (Years 1 and 2) children will:
- Be taught in their class groups to ensure that all children have access to the same learning, encouraging children to 'keep up' with additional support rather than 'catch up'.
- Receive additional support and intervention when required.
- Be taught the knowledge, skills and understanding through a range of literature.
- Speak confidently and listen to what others have to say.
- Begin to read and write independently and with enthusiasm.
- Use language to explore their own experiences and imaginary worlds.
- Be assessed regularly through phonics tracker/ benchmarking to ensure that they are reading books that closely match their decoding ability.
- Be taught focused phonic sessions 4 times a week. Year 1 will focus on level 5, moving onto level 6 in year 2. Year 2 will focus on level 6.
- Take part in weekly grouped and whole class guided reading sessions.
- Children that do not pass the Year 1 phonics screening test will have the opportunity to repeat the test in Year 2.
At Key Stage Two (Years 3-6) children will:
- Receive additional phonics support if they have not yet passed the Year 1 phonics screening test.
- Complete regular phonics assessments. This knowledge is used to plan and structure additional phonics teaching or interventions.
- Receive further level 6 input through the teaching of spelling and grammar.
A huge thank you to parents/ carers who attended the EY/ KS1 phonics & early reading workshop. We look forward to delivering further workshops in the new school year to support you and your child as they settle into phonics within their new year group.
This is what our families had to say about the workshop:
What did you enjoy about today's session?
"Info given/ activities and being able to do them with our child...range of activities...supportive and hardworking teachers! Well done".
"All of it, especially the workshop with the children and seeing their excitement when completing the worksheets and how they were concentrating".
"Very informative. Enjoyed session with children".
"To know how much the children are being taught at school".
All feedback indicated that families;
- found the workshop informative and engaging
- felt supported as a parent/ carer
- felt that the workshop gave them more confidence in supporting their child as they learn to read.
Thank you for taking time to feedback, we really appreciate it!
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to come and speak to a member of the Warwick Road Team!