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Phonics and Reading

Of all the activities that children engage in at school, reading is the one that most parents want to know more about. It's encouraging for staff to know that parents are keen to find out how they can continue their child's learning at home and support them with their reading and we hope the links below will help.
Children need as much encouragement as possible, at home and school, to become enthusiastic readers. It is not all about getting on to the next level. Enjoying reading and becoming an independent reader are also necessary for lifelong learning.
The information below gives an overview of reading activities from Reception through to the start of a pupil's junior education. It also gives some advice to enable parents to feel confident about reading with their child.


Key Stage One Phonics

Phonics is taught in a highly structured programme of daily lessons across Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 in groups differentiated according to children’s phonic awareness and development. The Letters and Sounds programme is followed, providing a synthetic approach to the teaching of phonics. Each session gives an opportunity for children to revisit their previous experience, be taught new skills, practise together and apply what they have learnt.


Phonic assessment

Children’s progress is continually reviewed to allow for movement between groups. Children are formally assessed at the end of each term.

The National Phonics Screening Check is performed in the end of Year 1. Prior to this, Year 1 phonics workshops give 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 it again in Year 2, after receiving additional support.

Phoneme pronunciation guide with sound edit.wmv

Still image for this video





Shared reading
Children enjoy listening to and participating in a story read by an adult. They are encouraged to join in with the repetitive and predictable text and use their phonetic knowledge.


Guided reading
A special time, once or twice a week, where children read words and pictures. The teacher models reading, pointing to words and helping pupils to sound out the first few letters. Children enjoy studying the pictures to find clues for unfamiliar words.


High Frequency Words
High frequency words are taught and reinforced in phonic lessons and should be practised regularly at home.


The Oxford Reading Tree Scheme
These books are structured to introduce sight vocabulary of increasing difficulty. The characters and experiences introduced in the scheme are ones children can relate to.


Flash cards
Are use with the whole class, groups or individually to introduce new words related to the scheme books.


Word games
Children will think it's play as they engage in these activities that build their confidence with letter sounds, word building spelling and eventually sentence construction.


Library books
We start as we mean to go on throughout primary school by letting reception children choose and enjoy library books to support their reading.


How you can help at home

  • Make it fun.
  • Find a time to read when you and your child are not too tired, make it quality time.
  • Short frequent sessions will be more successful than one long one.
  • Give encouragement, motivation and praise for the smallest step.
  • Talk a lot about the pictures, predict what will happen next.
  • Let your child tell the story. Correct any of their key words but only correct others if the meaning is wrong.
  • Tell them the word if they are really stuck.
  • If you read stories to your child don't give up now because they have started to learn. Children who are read to frequently seem to become better readers.
  • Stay in touch with the teacher. The reading record book is an effective home-school link.


If in doubt the staff are always pleased to help!

Key stage One


Reading Schemes

At Hook-With-Warsash CofE Academy, all of our children learn to read using the Oxford Reading Tree scheme. Your child will be given an appropriate level to choose their home reading book from, which will help to insure that the book they select is at about the right reading level for them. Every level includes books from a range of genres, ensuring they will experience a range of stories, poetry and non-fiction. As children move through the levels they will have the opportunity to supplement these core books with ‘real’ books from the library, appropriate to their reading level. We encourage the children to be independent and take ownership over changing their reading books.

How you can help at home

  • Continue to make reading a positive experience peppered with encouragement and praise at a time when no one is grumpy!
  • Read to them! This is still a very important activity - not only because they really enjoy it, but you are modelling expression and pace too.
  • Encourage your child to point to the words or lines one by one.
  • Encourage your child to focus on and discuss interesting words.
  • Develop their comprehension skills by:
  1. talking about the pictures,
  2. challenging them to make predictions about what might happen next or what may have happened before!
  3. ask them why they think this.
  • Expect and foster independence by helping them select books that are at an appropriate level and to choose one that may interest them.
  • Share a range of texts with your child which can include fiction, non-fiction, comics, cereal packets, leaflets about attractions etc - the list is endless.
  • Once you have heard your child read please fill in the reading record as the staff value your comments.

And on into the Juniors
By the time your children enter the Juniors they have accumulated a wealth of reading skills. They will continue to have shared, group and individual reading experiences. They learn how to keep their own reading record books and are encouraged to make thoughtful responses in these.
The key emphasis for reading in the Juniors is on developing comprehension. Pupils learn, through active discussion, how to interpret characters actions, to empathise with them and they are challenged to give their opinions about why characters may act like they do. They become adept at referring to specific phrases in the text to support their answers.
As the children make further progress they learn how different text types are structured and why.
What a journey they have made!


How you can help at home
Share a range of texts with your child which can include fiction, non-fiction, comics, cereal packets, leaflets about attractions etc - the list is endless.
Once you have heard your child read please fill in the reading record as the staff value your comments.

Please continue to read to your children. They gain so much from listening to an adult and research shows that children who are read to, can exceed expectation at secondary school.