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St John's Catholic

Primary School

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St John's Catholic

Primary School


We approach the teaching of reading in a structured way, incorporating synthetic phonics with whole class, guided and independent reading schemes. 


In Key Stage 1, we use the Little Wandle phonics scheme. We also have a wide range of other reading books, both fiction and non-fiction. The Collins Big Cat Phonics Books are used for guided reading and are organised by sounds. Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds and Pearson Phonics Bug Club books are used for home readers and are organised by sounds. Our reading books are matched closely to the phonics phase/ stage that the children are working on.


Reading Practice provides an opportunity for the teacher to teach reading in relation to the differentiated needs of the pupil groups, linked to individual progress and attainment.


Synthetic phonics is the synthesizing, or blending of phonemes (sounds) to make a word, enabling children to read. It is is all the different ways each phoneme can be represented. Children are taught how to blend phonemes in a word to read; listen for phonemes in words to spell; read irregular, high frequency words; say the phoneme first and then the letter name.


Books are chosen on ability, ranging from high quality picture books, early first word, and then onto progression through the phonic phases. Children then choose books to read independently at their own level from the Accelerated Reader range. There is a wide range of genres and authors to choose from, in order to inspire and engage children in reading. 

Whole class books are also read together, to help develop comprehension skills and vocabulary.


Reception, Y1, Y2: Phonically decodable books 

Y2: Children start to choose from their Accelerated Reader range, quizzing to check understanding once they are confident in phonics phases.

Y3-Y6: Children choose from their Accelerated Reader range, quizzing when each book is read in order to develop their comprehension skills.

Mrs Chisnall (Reception teacher) and Mrs Moseley (English Lead) held an evening for Reception parents to introduce them to phonics teaching and learning. The scheme was shared along with the resources. We also shared how reading is taught in our school.

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