At Crossacres Primary Academy we use systematic teaching of phonics to support children in learning to read and write. As children progress in their phonic knowledge children will move on from learning letters and the sounds that they make, to using and applying this knowledge to read and write words, then into reading and writing sentences. We give the children the opportunity to use and apply their phonic learning through games and activities so that they then use this in their independent reading and writing work.
At Crossacres we follow the ‘Letters and Sounds’ document.
At Crossacres Primary Academy we intend to:
Ensure that children progress in their phonic knowledge through:
– Daily phonic sessions.
– Phonics being promoted as a tool to help children decode words to read and spell.
– Children being encouraged to use and apply their phonic knowledge in independent work and guided reading sessions.
– Passing the phonics screening check.
At Crossacres Primary Academy we follow ‘Letters and Sounds.’ This is taught from Nursery upwards. We have a four part lesson; revisit, teach, practise and apply. Children work through the phases as well as the vocabulary, grammar, punctuation and spelling expectations from the National Curriculum. Once children have completed the phases they start GPS sessions.
All children (Nursery- Year 2) have a daily phonics session of 15-20 minutes. In EYFS as children enter the school they are assessed as to their phonemic awareness. In EYFS a focus on developing children’s phonic awareness and Phase One and Two skills are also taught within the daily provision during free flow sessions. During the sessions from Reception upwards the four part lesson is delivered. This included a real focus on applying what they have learnt into their writing. We try to involve the children in as many exciting games and activities to make phonics fun! Homework often has a phonic focus.
Cross Curricular Links
We do not see phonics as a standalone subject. In school we recognise the impact good phonics teaching can have on children learning to read and write, but we see it as part of a rich literacy curriculum. Children are exposed to a wide variety of books and texts to encourage their love of reading. During literacy sessions we encourage children to apply their phonic knowledge to read and write. In Early Years children are given the opportunity to develop their mark making into early writing through setting exciting contexts for writing for a purpose using their phonic knowledge.
Equal Opportunities / Inclusion
Phonic lessons are streamed so that the task is directly matched to children’s phonic level. Regular assessment is used to ensure that children are in the correct phonics groups. Streaming also allows for children that benefit from learning in smaller groups to be accommodated for. Gifted and talented children are identified and work in a smaller group at the same ability and allowed to progress at a faster pace than the rest of the class. Children with SEN either work in a group but with a Teaching Assistant to provide additional support on top of their daily phonic session, or they work individually on their phonic targets, depending on their needs. Children that do not pass the Year one phonics screening test in Year One have the opportunity to repeat the test when they are in Year 2. We acknowledge that for most children regular Synthetic Phonics lessons are the best way to learn, but some children require a different approach or a combination of different phonic strategies.
Summative Assessment is carried out once every half term to assess the children’s knowledge and to determine appropriate groupings as well as progress towards the phonics screening check. This information is used to identify areas that need to be revised or repeated. We use past phonic screening checks for this.
Formative Assessment is carried out on a daily basis during the session through questioning and writing on whiteboards, providing instant assessment. Groups are fluid to ensure children can be placed in the group that is appropriate for them.
The results of the summative assessments are reported back to the SLT and Governing Body. The phonics coordinator provides a detailed report to inform about progress towards the phonics screening check termly.
Children also have a weekly spelling test every Friday to assess their knowledge of the sounds they have been learning that week. They have ten words with the phoneme in focus and one tricky word from that particular phase.
Teaching and planning is monitored on a termly basis to ensure progression from year to year and to ensure the higher attaining children are being sufficiently challenged. The groups are monitored on a regular basis and we always aim for the maximum amount of children to be working at the age appropriate phase and above.
· Involving Parents
· Parents are informed of the results of the practise phonics screening check, three times a year.
· In the Autumn term we have a Phonic Parent Workshop. During this meeting we inform parents of the expectations of the phonic screening check and give free resources to help them practise their phonics at home. Along with this, we send a copy of a past phonic screening cheek so parents and children can familiarise themselves with the layout and format of the test.
· Reading records have a tick checklist for each sound.
· Homework always has a phonic focus.