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Harefield Primary School

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How We Teach Phonics and Early Reading

 

   Phonics Statement

 

At Harefield Primary School we give a high priority to the teaching of phonics and every day we will teach phonics as a separate session.   

 

Approach

We adopt the synthetic phonics approach through the 'Letters and Sounds' programme and use actions to support the children’s memory. Synthetic phonics is the process of sounding out the individual sounds in an unknown word and then blending these sounds together in order to read the word.  The scheme teaches the sounds in an order which allows them to quickly begin to put sounds together to read words. For example, many words can be created from the letters SATPIN, whereas very few could be built using the initial letters of the alphabet ABCDE.

 

Tricky words

Alongside the skills of blending (putting sounds together to read) and segmenting (breaking words down to spell them), the children are also taught ‘tricky words’ words that cannot be sounded out, such as 'was' or 'me'. They learn to read and to spell these from memory within each phase.

 

Sessions

The sessions, as outlined in Letters and Sounds, are pacey and only last 20 minutes. They follow the same four part structure each day of recap/revisit, teach, practice and apply.

 

Year R

The Year R phonics curriculum teaches children the first letter sounds in manageable groups, based on the Letters and Sounds programme. Children are then taught to read and then write simple words using these sounds. By the end of Year R, we aim for all children to be working securely in Phase 3 and the majority working within Phase 4. 

 

The context of our school means that it is very important children are still drip fed Phase 1 phonics, which has a focus on hearing and identifying sounds. There are seven aspects within phase 1:

  1. General sound discrimination – environmental sounds
  2. General sound discrimination - instrumental sounds
  3. General sound discrimination – body percussion
  4. Rhythm and rhyme
  5. Alliteration
  6. Voice sounds
  7. Oral blending and segmenting

 

Children who can listen for and identify initial, medial and final sounds will be able to successfully blend the sounds to read words.

 

 

During phase 2 and 3, the children will learn the following sounds and tricky words:

 

Phase 2

Set 1

Set 2

 

Set 3

 

Set 4

Set 5

Set 6

s, a, t, p

i, n, m, d

g, o, c, k

ck, e, u, r

h, b, f, ff

l, ll, ss

Tricky words introduced

the, to, I, no, go

 

Phase 3

Set 6

Set 7

Set 8 - Consonant digraphs

Set 9 - Vowel digraphs

Set 10 - Vowel digraphs

Set 11 - Vowel digraphs

Set 12 - Vowel digraphs

j, v, w, x

y, z, zz, qu

ch, sh, th, ng

ai, ee, igh, oa

oo, ar, or, ur

ow, oi, ear

air, ure, er

Tricky words introduced

he, she, we, me, be, was, you, they, all, are, my, her

 

Following on from this, children will use the above sounds to segment and blend in order to read words within sentences.

 

In Phase 4, no new graphemes are introduced. The main aim of this phase is to consolidate the children's knowledge and to help them learn to read and spell words which have adjacent consonants, such as ‘trap’, ‘string’ and ‘milk’. A number of new tricky words are introduced within this phase:

 

Phase 4

Tricky words introduced

said, have, like, so, do, some, come, were, there, little, one, when, out, what.

 

 

Year 1

The children in Year 1 continue with daily phonics practise, following the Letters and Sounds programme. They spend two weeks consolidating phase 4 and then move on to phase 5.

 

In phase 5, they learn the following new sounds:

Phase 5

a-e

(as in came)

au

(as in Paul)

aw

(as in saw)

ay

(as in day)

e-e

(as in these)

ea

(as in sea)

Tricky words

 

oh, their, people, Mr, Mrs, looked, called, asked.

 

ew

(as in stew)

ey

(as in money)

ie

(as in

 tie)

i-e

(as in like)

ir

(as in girl)

o-e

(as in bone)

 

oe

(as in toe)

ou

(as in out)

oy

(as in boy)

ue

(as in clue)

u-e

(as in June)

 

 

 

 

 

wh

(as in 

when)

ph

(as in Phil)

 

 

 

 

They will then learn the alternative spellings for the sounds they know and begin to look at common spelling patterns.

 

Alternative Spelling For Phonemes

/c/

/ch/

/f/

/j/

/m/

/n/

/ng/

/r/

/s/

/sh/

/v/

/w/

k

tch

ph

g

mb

kn

n(k)

wr

c

ch

ve

wh

ck

 

 

dge

 

gn

 

 

sc

t(ion)

 

 

qu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ss(ion, ure)

 

 

x

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

s(ion, ure)

 

 

ch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

c(ion, ious, ial)

 

 

 

/e/

/i/

/o/

/u/

/ai/

/ee/

/igh/

/oa/

/oo/

/oo/

ea

y

(w)a

o

ay

ea

y

ow

ew

u

 

ey

 

 

a-e

e-e

ie

oe

ue

oul

 

 

 

 

eigh

ie

i-e

o-e

ui

o

 

 

 

 

ey

y

 

o

ou

 

 

 

 

 

ei

ey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

eo

 

 

 

 

 

/ar/

/or/

/ur/

/ow/

/oi/

/ear/

/air/

/ure/

/er/

a

aw

ir

ou

oy

ere

are

our

our

 

au

er

 

 

eer

ear

 

e

 

al

ear

 

 

 

 

 

u

 

our

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Phoneme

/zh/

vision

 

 

 

All children complete the national phonics screening in Year 1 during a specified week in June.  Any children who did not take the test or did not pass the test in Year 1 will retake it again in Year 2.

 

 

Year 2

The children in Year 2 continue to follow the Letters and Sounds programme and the main focus is on supporting children’s fluency and accuracy in spelling.

 

Year 2 Spelling Curriculum

ge / dge / g

(as in badge, age, giant)

ce /ci /cy (as in ice, city, fancy)

kn / gn

(as in knight, gnaw)

le / el / il

(as in puddle, tunnel, pencil)

y

(as in dry)

al / all

(as in ball, walk)

 
 

o

(as in mother)

wa / qua

(as in watch, squash)

wor

(as in work)

war

(as in warm)

s

(as in television)

-tion

(as in station)

 

 

Children will be taught the many different rules for spelling plurals, and adding suffixes to words. Children are taught to understand when to apply which alternative spellings of words in which situation.

 

Suffixes

Meaning

Example

-ed

in the past/past tense

walked, climbed

-s/-es

more than one

pencils, boxes

-ing

doing something

singing, running

-ly

how something is done

quietly, angrily

-less

without

fearless, hopeless

-ful

full of

colourful, beautiful

-ness

state or condition

happiness, sadness

-ment

in the action of

movement, enjoyment

-er

more

lower, luckier

-est

most

lowest, luckiest

 

Many words do not change when a suffix is added, but others do:

  • Words that end with short vowel sound + consonant — double the last letter before adding suffixes that begin with a vowel such as -ed, -ing and –est, e.g. fit – fitter – fittest bat – batted – batting
  • Don’t double the last letter if the suffix begins with a consonant, e.g. bat – bats fit – fitness
  • Words that end with consonant + ‘y’ — the ‘y’ becomes ‘i’ or ‘ie’ before the suffix is added, e.g. puppy – puppies, happy – happiness, lucky – luckier – luckiest, fry – fried
  • Words that end with vowel + y do not change, e.g. monkey – monkeys enjoy – enjoying
  • Words that end with x, zz, ch, tch, sh — add -es to make a plural, e.g. fox – foxes wish – wishes

 

Children will also be taught to:

  • learn to spell common exception words
  • learn to spell more words with contracted forms (eg, can’t, isn’t)
  • learn the possessive apostrophe for singular nouns (eg, Tom’s)
  • spell homophones and near-homophones (eg, pear and pair)

 

 

Words your child might use when talking about phonics:

 

Phoneme

Phonemes are the smallest unit of speech - sounds which make up a word.

If you change a phoneme in a word, you would change its meaning. For example, there are three phonemes in the word sit /s/-/i/-/t/. If you change the phoneme /s/ for /f/, you have a new word, fit. If you change the phoneme /t/ in fit for a /sh/, you have a new word, fish - /f/-/i/-/sh/.

Grapheme

Graphemes are the written representation of sounds – the letters.

Digraph

A grapheme containing 2 letters that makes just one sound, eg /sh/ in shop or /ch/ in chip.

Trigraph

A grapheme containing 3 letters that makes just one sound, eg /air/ in pair or /igh/ in night.

Split digraph

A grapheme containing 2 letters but are separated by another sound, eg ‘ae’ in make is separated by the sound /k/ so it is split /a-e/.

Blend

The process of putting individual sounds together to read a word, eg sh–o-p, shop.

Segment

The process of breaking a word into individual sounds to spell a word.

Sound buttons

Teachers might use these under words to indicate whether the sound is a single letter sound (dot) or a digraph/trigraph (dash) to help children to blend the sounds correctly in the word, eg shop.

                                           

 

Partnership Information

Harefield Primary School is proud to be
a part of the Edwin Jones Partnership

Edwin Jones Partnership

Hamwic Education Trust
Hamwic Teaching Schools Alliance

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