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Reading and Phonics at the Federation

At the Federation we strive to promote a love of reading for all. Adults read to the children daily and encourage all pupils to read widely across both fiction and non-fiction to develop their knowledge of themselves and the world around them. We support/guide children to foster a love of reading through the key text chosen from the CLPE Power of Reading list linked to the curriculum. As well as, regularly using of our well stocked library to take books home, Year 6 librarian book recommendations, mystery reader sessions in Reception, and classroom book corners with carefully selected texts, and assemblies linked to current affairs encouraging children to go away and read more about certain topics.

The love of reading also reaches out of the school and children take home a mixture of scheme and real books to share with an adult at home weekly. To support parents and to promote reading we have Reading Cafés where the community and school come together to share books, reading tips and recommendations.

Through all of this the children gain knowledge across the curriculum, become inquisitive readers and develop comprehension skills. By the end of a child’s education with us, it is our intention for them to read fluently, with expression and confidence before they move into secondary education.  

Phonics

Debbie Hepplewhite’s Phonics International is our chosen systematic synthetic phonics programme which starts in Reception. In Nursery, Debbie Hepplewhite’s ‘Teeny Reading Seeds’ programme is used. These early phonics resources give the children an initial exposure to the alphabet letters and their sounds. They have fun exploring letters and their sounds in a playful and meaningful way and focus on developing the hand strength, coordination and correct pencil grip for writing.

The basis of Phonics International, which is a fully resourced programme, is to teach the letter sound correspondence knowledge of the English Alphabetic Code. This code knowledge is used to apply the three skills of: blending for reading (synthesising); segmenting for spelling; handwriting the letter shapes correctly. In the programme, the learners gain an enriched vocabulary and develop their comprehension in the process of learning to read, spell and write in the English language.

Progression is evident in the pupils’ home/ school folders, through the classroom displays and the content of the teaching. We follow the rigorous application of the teaching and learning cycle using cumulative code, words, sentences, texts and reading books to apply the skills learnt. Guided reading takes place daily in KS1, providing groups of children with the opportunity to practice their comprehension and reading skills in a supportive, teacher led session. In Year 2 the phonics programme continues with a greater focus on spelling patterns whilst still reinforcing and embedding phonic knowledge and skills.