At St Johns we follow the ‘Letters and Sounds Primary National Strategy.’ This scheme allows us to teach the principles and practice of high quality phonics. Phonics is taught in KS1 to ensure that children reach the expected standard of phonic decoding by the time of the Y1 phonics screening check. We also use the ‘Read, Write Inc’ scheme to help support those children who need further intervention and support with their reading. This teaches the following basic skills for reading:
Knowing that English reading is tracked from Left to Right and top to bottom.
Learning the letter sounds
Learning letter formation
Identifying sounds in words
Spelling and reading the ‘tricky’ words
Blending is the process of saying the individual sounds in a word and then running them together to make the word. For example, sounding out d-o-g and making dog. The sounds must be said quite quickly to hear the word. It is easier if the first sound is said slightly louder. Some letters are represented by two letters, such as sh. Children should sound out the sound sh not the individual letters (s-h). With practice they will be able to blend the sound as one sound in a word. These are also referred to as ‘green words’ in the Read, Write Inc scheme.
Some words in English have an irregular spelling and cannot be read by blending, such as ‘said’, ‘was’, and ‘one’. We advise that these should not be sounded out. Many of these are common words; we will teach these as ‘tricky’ words practising them regularly. We will send home word lists for your child to practise, some of them may be sounded out; others will be ‘tricky’ words. These are also referred to as ‘red words’ in the Read, Write Inc scheme.