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Our phonics leader is Mrs Cutler. Please contact the school office if you would like to discuss our phonics programme with her.


Phonics is taught in a highly structured programme of daily lessons across FS/KS1 and KS2 in groups differentiated according to children’s phonic awareness and development. The Letters and Sound programme is followed, providing a synthetic approach to the teaching of phonics. This is supplemented by Jolly Phonics, PiPs, Rapid Phonics, First Steps and other ICT games.


Each session gives an opportunity for children to revisit their previous experience, be taught new skills, practise together and apply what they have learned.


'We  follow the Letters and Sounds programme to teach Phonics and the children learn the Jolly Phonics actions for each new sound

they learn.'


'The children are able to select from a large range of reading books both Fiction and Non-fiction depending on their preference and ability.These are primarily decodable books which reinforce their growing reading vocabulary of common exception words. The children work through a colour banded system of texts according to their reading ability until they become 'Free readers'. '


Phases of the Phonics Programme
The programme is carefully structured into developmental phases. The sessions are delivered to ensure participation and engagement resulting in high quality phonic work on a daily basis to help practitioners and teachers ensure that by the end of Key Stage 1 children develop fluent word reading skills and good foundations in spelling.


The pace at which it is suggested the children progress through the programme should be taken as a guide rather than applied rigidly. Using reliable assessments of children’s developing knowledge and skills, practitioners and teachers will judge the rate at which their children are able to progressthrough the programme and adapt the pace accordingly. Children are grouped according to the stage they are currently working at.


Phase 1
Usually taught in Preschool , is about using a range of listening activities and games to develop listening skills.


Phase 2
Usually taught in Foundation Stage, introduces the sound letter correspondence, although not all the alphabet is taught in this phase. Children are taught to blend sounds together into words, and to segment words into sounds.


Phase 3
Also in Foundation Stage, completes the teaching of the alphabet and then moves on to cover sounds represented by more than one letter, learning one spelling pattern for each of the 44 sounds. At this stage just one spelling is given for each sound.


Phase 4
Usually in Year 1, is where children start to read and spell words containing adjacent consonants. No new sounds are

introduced at this phase.


Phase 5
In year 1, looks at alternative spellings for some sounds and allowing the children to see the range of ways sounds can be represented. This phase maybe continued into Year 2


Phase 6
Taught in year 2, develops a variety of spelling strategies including word specific spellings eg see/ sea, spelling of words with prefixes and suffixes, doubling and dropping letters where necessary. Children are also taught the accurate spelling of words with un usual spellings. (E.g. laugh, two) All children are taught, and use, the same "patter" to help them learn how to form the letters correctly. The school spelling programs complement the phonics learning from Reception through to the end of KS2. The spelling of common and tricky words are taught continuously throughout the phases.
Phonics Assessment
Children’s progress is continually reviewed to allow for movement between ability groups, and children move phonics group when it is felt necessary to meet their needs. Children are formally assessed at the end of each term. The national Phonics screening check is performed in June of Year 1. The purpose of the screening check is to confirm that all children have learned phonic decoding to an age appropriate standard. Children will be expected to read 40 simple, decodable words including nonsense words. The results of the Year 1 phonic screening is reported to parents. The children who did not meet the required standard for the check in year 1 enter again in year 2 with additional support. As children enter KS2 provision is made for those children still requiring daily phonics.


Through careful monitoring and tracking teachers are able to identify children who are not making the expected progress and therefore need intervention to catch up. Depending on the needs of individuals, this may include additional individual or small group tutoring; one to one work with a trained practitioner or extra support for a child or small group of children within a lesson. It is important that children who are struggling to learn to read not only need to catch up with their peers, but also to continue to make progress.


Phonics at KS2
If children in Key Stage 2 experience difficulty in reading and/or writing because they have missed or misunderstood a crucial phase of systematic phonics teaching additional resources can be used to support them.


Special Educational Needs
Our aim at Marden Vale academy is that every child’s needs are catered for and every child is giventhe chance to succeed and become competent readers. If children are not attaining as expected, due to other difficulties, then it is our duty to put extra intervention in place, to help close the gap and ensure progress is being made.


Homework is used to support phonics taught in class, through tasks such as:
• Practising phonic skills in spelling words
• Reading and activities link to reading
• Writing Task