At Kennington Primary School, we use a synthetic phonics programme called Letters and Sounds.
Letters and Sounds is divided into six phases, with each phase building on the skills and knowledge of previous learning. Children have time to practice and rapidly expand their ability to read and spell words. They are also taught to read and spell ‘tricky words’ – words with spellings that are unusual or that children have not yet been taught. For example: the words ‘to’, ‘was’, ‘said’ and ‘the’. You can’t break the sounds down for such words so it’s better to just learn them.
Phase one will have begun in nursery. This phase paves the way for the systematic learning of phonics. During this phase especially, children to listen attentively to sounds around them, such as the sounds of their toys and to sounds in spoken language. The children also learn to identify rhyme and alliteration.
Children in Reception and Key Stage 1 continue to follow the ‘Letters and Sounds’ programme. It is an approach to teaching phonics in which individual letters or letter sounds are blended to form groups of letters or sounds, and those groups are then blended to form complete words.
Our daily phonics sessions in Reception are fun, involving lots of speaking, listening and games. The emphasis is on children’s active participation. They learn to use their phonic knowledge for reading and writing activities and in their independent play.
Learning to read is the most important thing your child will learn at our school. Everything else depends on it, so we put as much energy as we possibly can into making sure that every single child learns to read as quickly as possible.
We want your child to love reading – and to want to read for themselves. This is why we put our efforts into making sure they develop a love of books as well as simply learning to read.
In KS1 (Infants) children learn to read through various reading schemes such as Oxford Reading Tree, Floppy Phonics, Songbirds, Dandelion readers, Read Write Inc and Project X. They also have access to high quality ‘real books’ in our class libraries. These give a variety of fiction and non–fiction books to develop children’s reading range. The books are banded according to their level of difficulty, providing children with a challenging reading experience which also allows them to use their developing phonic and whole word knowledge to read independently.
Once children enter KS2, if they are ready, they move onto the Accelerated Reader program. This involves children reading real books at an appropriate level and then taking reading, vocabulary and literacy quizzes after finishing the book. As a school, we can track the progress each child makes through analysing how successful they have been when taking the quizzes.
For more information on the various reading schemes we use, please click on the below: