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This consists of 3 aspects; speaking and listening, reading and writing. We believe speaking and listening is vital in all years and during lessons, pupils will be encouraged to verbalise what they are thinking, either to the teacher or to their peers.

Phonics is taught from Reception and throughout Key Stage 1 as a foundation for pupils to develop their reading and writing.  At Brabourne we use the Letters and Sounds programme to form the basis and provide children with the skills with which they can become confident, fluent and independent readers.

The Letters and Sounds resource builds and develops children’s speaking and listening skills as well as providing them with the firm foundations needed for reading through the development of their phonics knowledge and skills. It is a detailed and systematic programme which teaches children the skills they need to read.  Children in EYFS and KS1 participate in a 20-30 minute phonics lesson at least 4 times per week and within each lesson there will be the following sections:

  • Revisit – where they will recap their previous learning
  • Teach – where they will be taught or consolidate a new phoneme/letter pattern or word(s)
  • Practise – where they will read and/or segment and spell words/captions/sentences with the new phoneme/letter pattern or word(s)
  • Apply – where they will read or write words or captions or sentences with the new phoneme/letter pattern or word(s) as w whole class, group or individually.

The Letters and Sounds programme consists of 5 overlapping , but progressive phases, which allow the continuous development of children’s phonics knowledge and skills. The programme begins with lots of auditory work; promoting good listening skills, rhythm and rhyme and environmental skills which form a firm basis upon which children can progress and develop to become fluent readers, who are able to spell words with complex spelling patterns in KS1.

By following this programme children will

  • learn that we can represent sounds by written letters
  • learn that each letter has a sound and also a name
  • learn variations of sounds
  • learn a total of 44 sounds and their corresponding written form
  • learn to blend sounds together in order to make words, getting progressively more complex
  • become confident readers over time who can read captions and sentences
  • learn to segment words into their individual sounds to aid spelling
  • develop spelling skills such as prefixes, suffixes, doubling or omitting letters

To further support our teaching and delivery of phonics we may draw or resources, which we feel will strengthen the children’s engagement and understanding. Such resources that we frequently use are letter formation mnemonic cards from RWI, actions and songs from Jolly Phonics, videos and clips from the Alphablocks series as well as games and puzzles from providers such as  Epic Phonics and games and puzzles from Phonics Play, Phonics Bloom and Phonics Hero. These are used as and when they fit with the letter progression in the Letters and Sounds Programme.


Reading Books

Through the teaching of the Letters and Sounds programme children will be able to read, and to promote and enable children to become confident readers at Brabourne we use a range of books to develop this.

The reading books for children in who are working on the Letters and Sounds Programme (predominantly those in Reception and Year One) will be reading books that are entirely phonetically decodable and are in line with what they know. As we aim to instill a life-long love of reading we draw on range of different books to promote this. These include Oxford Reading Tree, Floppy’s Phonics and Bug Club which feature a range of fiction and non-fiction texts.  These books have been carefully ordered by staff, by number and are worked through progressively by the children, according to their phonetic awareness. Access to these decodable books enables our youngest children to build confidence and allows them to practise their phonics skills. Some of the books may feature high frequency and/or tricky words which the children learn to recognise as part of the phonics programme. Other opportunities to read together happen daily too and as part of the routine and/or environment. Children will enjoy sharing stories, non-fiction texts and poems together and will read captions, labels and simple instructions as part of their day-to-day learning.

Children in EYFS will bring home a set of grapheme cards and/or words cards at the end of each week. This is to enable them to continue their learning of that phoneme and/or words at home. Parents may also be directed to online resources to share with their child at home too.

As the children develop into confident and fluent readers they will move onto books that have been grouped according to their Book Band colour. These books allow for progression in terms of word reading and development of comprehension skills as they become longer in length, complexity and/or story structure and hold children’s interest and thus develop their reading stamina.

In Reading, pupils, where appropriate, are encouraged to select and read a range of texts for enjoyment. Older pupils will read a whole class text to ensure they are exposed to quality texts that broaden and deepen their knowledge by answering comprehension questions. Pupils read regularly during the school week; to staff, to parent-helpers, during quiet reading times, as well as for research in other subjects.

Writing consists of many skills. Spelling, grammar, punctuation, handwriting (we use the cursive style from Year 2), and different genres of writing. We teach each separately at times and also all together when producing an independent piece of writing. High quality core books are used as stimuli for a creative and stimulating writing curriculum. Sequences of lessons are planned around an engaging text to make writing meaningful and motivational. Pupils benefit from some stand alone EGPS lessons as well as it being embedded within an English lesson. A range of genres are also taught within English lessons but also throughout the Broader curriculum. We also encourage pupils to write at home with the weekly homework tasks set.

We offer workshops for parents across the school year on ways to support children’s learning in English.

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