Literacy - Reading, Writing, Spelling and phonics

Piddle Valley CE First School 
Phonics and Spelling Policy and Teaching Progression 
 

  Phonics:  At Piddle Valley CE First School, Letters and Sounds is used to structure the teaching of  Phonics from Pre-School to Year 2, supplemented with Read Write Inc teaching strategies and  resources.   
 
The School is currently reviewing the impact of phonics teaching schemes as part of the School Improvement Plan. There is currently a period of transition in Pre-school/Reception class/Year 1 teaching sequences. The Pre-school are using the teaching sequence from Read, Write Inc and the Reception are currently using the sequence from Letters and Sounds. This is currently under review and development.
 
Letters and Sounds: 
 
Letters and Sounds is carefully structured in six phases to teach children the phonic knowledge  (the alphabetic principle) and skills (blending and segmenting) they need in order to decode  effortlessly and fluently. A daily teaching sequence supports the process of consolidating  existing teaming, acquiring new learning, and applying that learning to fully decodable texts of  increasing length. The phonic phases build phonic knowledge incrementally from the simple to  the more complex, and include the teaching of high frequency 'tricky' words that are not  totally phonically regular. These are introduced in alignment with each phase according to  their phonic components to build confidence and independence in reading and spelling. An  indispensable component of each day's discrete session is the 'Apply' section of the teaching  sequence, where the teacher demonstrates how new learning can be applied through reading  and writing captions, instructions, questions and phoneme spotter stories. This ensures that  children are consistently practicing their developing phonic skills and knowledge at the point of  learning. Experiencing early, rapid and sustained success helps children to see the relevance of  phonics to reading and spelling, reinforcing each day that the purpose of phonics is to enable  them to become independent readers and writers.   
 
Read, Write, Inc: 
 
Read Write Inc. Phonics is a synthetic phonics programme by Ruth Miskin.
 
At Piddle Valley ,  children are taught the grapheme-phoneme correspondences in from the simple alphabetic  code to phonemes with alternative graphemes. For each phoneme, children are taught to ‘say  it’, ‘read it’, ‘write it’, using child friendly mnemonics and visual, auditory and kinesthetic  activities. Speed Sounds Cards with mnemonics are used to introduce the children to new GPCs  and to review and revisit previously taught GPCs.
Children learn to decode words by  identifying the graphemes and blending the phonemes, through the word. Reception children  learn the relationship between phonemes and graphemes, practice word blending with  magnetic letters, moving onto reading the lively, decodable Ditty Books or Storybooks,  matched to phonic ability as part of teaching reading.   
 
Year 1+ children review and learn new grapheme-phoneme correspondences and  apply their increased phonic knowledge to reading the Storybooks and doing writing  Activities as part of Guided Reading sessions and follow-up activities. 

  Children learn to spell words by segmenting them into phonemes. They learn this is  the opposite of blending. Children learn high frequency words from the earliest stages and  how to use knowledge of grapheme-phoneme correspondences as a first approach to words  which are not completely phonically regular. 

Writing

 

Literacy skills are essential skills for life.  The teaching of literacy is based on the guidance set out in the new 2014 National Curriculum.  As children move through the schools they read, analyse and recreate their own writing for different purposes.  Where possible these sessions are taught through a topic approach which provides and engaging and purposeful context. 

A range of stimuli are used to capture imaginations and to provide a first-hand experience from which to draw upon.  Our children benefit from a range of visitors, drama teachers, performers and trips.  Children are supported to understand the structural requirements for e.g. report writing, instructions, narrative and poetry but we aim for our children to leave our school with a love for books, reading and writing to enable them to face the challenges of further education and adult life.