At Earlsfield we use the Read Write Inc programme from Nursery to Year 2 to deliver phonic, early reading and spelling. Read Write Inc. is a method of learning centered around letter sounds and synthetic phonics. This programme matches or exceeds the expectations of the English National Curriculum and Early Learning Goals. We have clear expectations of pupil’s phonics progress term by term, from Reception to Year 2. Our sequence of reading books shows a cumulative progression in phonics knowledge which are closely matched to our phonics programme.
Across the course of the school year year we run a number of parent workshops relating to the teaching of Read Write Inc and also the statutory phonics screening that takes place in Year 1.
What do children learn through Read Write Inc?
- Learning to discriminate sounds in spoken words
- Learning to blend sounds orally
- Learning the letter sounds (phoneme) that are represented by written letters (grapheme) and practicing how to pronounce each sound accurately (pure)
- Learn 44 sounds and the corresponding letter/letter groups (digraphs, trigraphs and split-digraphs) using simple picture prompt cards (with matching phrases) or speed sound charts (Simple and Complex)
- Learn how to blend sounds and read words using ‘Fred talk’
- Learn to read words speedily and at pace
- Learn that some words have a ‘tricky sound’ (red words)
- Read fun and lively stories and non-fiction texts featuring words they have learnt to sound out
- Show that they comprehend the stories they have read by answering questions and discussing the text
Your child's phonics journey at Earlsfield
Our phonics journey starts in Nursery, when children first start our school. Children experience a language rich environment and are engaged in print which encourages interest in and discussion around word reading. Children are encouraged to discriminate sounds within their environment, linking to their name and common words related to the calendar and weather. Children are then introduced to the Set 1 speed sounds, they look carefully at the shape of the letters, words which start with and contain this sound, and explore sounds within free play and focussed teaching. Children also learn to blend sounds orally, for example, by playing ‘Simon says’ games, and in the summer term, begin to read cvc ‘green words’ in their phonics sessions. From the end of Autumn 2 children learn three sounds a week as part of whole class teaching.
Children in Reception and Year 1 receive four 30-minute phonics sessions a week, two whole class and two group. During whole-class phonics sessions new speed sounds are introduced, and green words (real and alien) are read using ‘Fred Talk’. Children regularly practice ‘speed sound’ flashcards, consolidating previously taught sounds and addressing gaps in knowledge. During group phonics, children are targeted to their ability and reading books or Word Time activities are planned to match phonic knowledge and fluency levels.
Children in Year 2 continue to receive phonic support as necessary and at their level by regularly reviewing the Set 1, 2 and 3 speed sounds, targeting gaps in knowledge through ‘Word Time!’ catch-up, reading and discussing RWInc. texts in Guided Reading sessions and at home.
The assessment of pupil’s phonics knowledge is frequent and detailed to monitor and track progress and identify any pupil who is falling behind. This enables targeted support to be given immediately through one to one or small group catch-up sessions. Using assessment data, children are grouped according to their ability and need. This ensures Word-Time and reading books are at an appropriate level to support progress and target gaps in knowledge.
Our school has developed sufficient expertise in the teaching of phonics and reading that ensures consistency between phonics groups and year groups. Teachers have a clear understanding of how pupils learn to read and we give pupils sufficient practice in reading and re-reading books that match the grapheme-phoneme correspondences they know, both at school and at home.
Staff also read aloud stories, poems, rhymes and non-fiction texts that develop pupils’ vocabulary, language comprehension and love of reading.
What would you see in a phonics lesson at Earlsfield?
- Children learning to read accurately by learning new sounds and reviewing previously taught sounds and sounding out unfamiliar words
- Children learning to read fluently, re-reading words and texts with increased speed
- A focus on reading comprehension, by making predictions after listening to a story introduction, discussing and comparing key moments in the story, children answering ‘find it’ and ‘prove it’ questions about the story
- Participation throughout the lesson, where children practise together, talk together and give feedback to each other.
What is the impact of Read Write Inc?
“Excellent phonics teaching ensures that children acquire the knowledge and skills they need to read and write well. The majority of children are making rapid progress in this aspect of their learning. Staff have strong subject knowledge and demonstrate accurately how to pronounce the sounds that different letters make. They provide children with clear guidance so they know how to say the sounds and write letters correctly. Staff intervene quickly to correct errors so children do not fall behind with their learning.” OFSTED 2017