At All Saints we want all pupils to benefit from a consistent and systematic approach to the teaching of phonics from entry to school. We use Little Wandle Letters and Sounds to structure and deliver our teaching of phonics, alongside high-quality reading experiences, to ensure that every child becomes a reader.
Little Wandle Letters and Sounds is a systematic approach for teaching children to read using phonics. It aims to build children's speaking and listening skills in their own right as well as to prepare children for learning to read by developing their phonic knowledge and skills. It sets out a detailed and systematic programme for teaching phonic skills for children starting school, with the aim of them becoming fluent readers by age seven.
At All Saints Babbacombe, we believe that all our children can become fluent readers and writers. This is why we teach reading through Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised, which is a systematic and synthetic phonics programme.
We start teaching phonics in Reception and follow the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised progression, which ensures children build on their growing knowledge of the alphabetic code, mastering phonics to read and spell as they move through school. As a result, all our children are able to tackle any unfamiliar words as they read.
At All Saints Babbacombe, we also model the application of the alphabetic code through phonics in shared reading and writing, both inside and outside of the phonics lesson and across the curriculum. We have a strong focus on language development for our children because we know that speaking and listening are crucial skills for reading and writing in all subjects.
Here at All Saints Babbacombe, we value reading as a crucial life skill. By the time children leave us, they read confidently for meaning and regularly enjoy reading for pleasure.
Our readers are equipped with the tools to tackle unfamiliar vocabulary. We encourage our children to see themselves as readers for both pleasure and purpose. Because we believe teaching every child to read is so important, we have a Phonics Leader who drives the early reading programme in our school. This person is highly skilled at teaching phonics and reading, and they monitor and support our reading team, so everyone teaches with fidelity to the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised programme.
Daily phonics lessons in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2:
• We teach phonics for 20-25 minutes a day. In Reception, we build from 10-minute lessons, with additional daily oral blending games, to the full-length lesson as quickly as possible. Each Friday, we review the week’s teaching to help children become fluent readers.
• Children make a strong start in Reception: teaching begins in Week 2 of the Autumn term.
• We follow the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised expectations of progress:
Children in Reception are taught to read and spell words using Phase 2 and 3 GPCs, and words with adjacent consonants (Phase 4) with fluency and accuracy.
Children in Year 1 review Phase 3 and 4 and are taught to read and spell words using Phase 5 GPCs with fluency and accuracy.
Children in Year 2 review Phase 5 GPCs and continue to develop their fluency and accuracy.
Reading practice sessions three times a week:
• We teach children (Reception and Y1) to read through reading practice sessions three times a week. These are taught by a fully trained adult to small groups of approximately six children to use books matched to the children’s secure phonic knowledge using Little Wandle assessments and book matching grids. These are monitored by the class teacher, who rotates and works with each group on a regular basis.
• Each reading practice session has a clear focus, so that the demands of the session do not overload the children’s working memory. The reading practice sessions have been designed to focus on three key reading skills:
Decoding: teaching children to apply their knowledge of letter-sound relationships (GPCs) to correctly pronounce written words,
Prosody: teaching children to read with understanding and expression,
Comprehension: teaching children to understand the text.
• In Reception these sessions start in Week 4 of the Autumn term. Children who are not yet decoding have daily additional blending practice in small groups, so that they quickly learn to blend and can begin to read books.
• In Year 2 onwards we continue to teach reading in this way for any child who still needs practise reading with decodable books.
• For children in Year 2 onwards, who have secure phonics knowledge but are not quite at the fluency and comprehension age related levels, we support them through the Herts reading fluency intervention programme.
Assessment is used to monitor progress and to identify any child needing additional support as soon as they need it.
• Assessment for learning is used:
daily within class to identify children needing Keep-up support
weekly in the Review lesson to assess gaps, address these immediately and secure fluency of GPCs, words and spellings.
• Summative assessment is used:
every six weeks to assess progress, to identify gaps in learning that need to be addressed, to identify any children needing additional support and to plan the Keep-up support that they need.
by the Phonics lead, English lead and SLT and scrutinised through the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised assessment tracker, to narrow attainment gaps between different groups of children and so that any additional support for teachers can be put into place.
• Children in Year 1 sit the Phonics Screening Check. Any child not passing the check re-sits it in Year 2.
• Children not on track in Year 2 to 6 are assessed through their teacher’s ongoing formative assessment as well as through the half-termly Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised Rapid Catch Up assessments.
Phonics Curriculum Progression
Year One National Phonics Screening Check
Children in Year One take part in an individual Phonics Screening Check in the Summer term. We do our best to make the children feel at ease during this time and just concentrate on doing their best. This academic year the Phonics Screening Check will take place on the Week commencing Monday 12 June 2023. We appreciate your child’s full attendance during these times.
Please note, that if any pupil did not sit or did not pass their phonics screening check in Year 1, they will be required to take the phonics screening check the following year in Year 2 during the Summer term.