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At Risby CEVC Primary School we aim to develop the full potential of all our pupils as confident, literate readers and writers. If children are to develop as competent readers and writers, it is vitally important that they have a secure understanding of the letter sounds and spelling system of the English language. Phonic skills need to be developed in a systematic way, based on a stage approach.


The principles of the Letters and Sounds Programme

At our school we follow this programme from Foundation Stage, through KS1 and into KS2 if appropriate. The programme focuses on securing word recognition skills, essential for children to decode (read) and encode (spell) words accurately and language comprehension.


The programme is carefully structured into developmental  phases. The sessions are delivered to ensure participation and engagement resulting in high- quality phonic work on a daily basis to help practitioners and teachers ensure that by the end of Key Stage 1 children develop fluent word reading skills and good foundations in spelling.


We use 'Jolly phonics' as a resource  to teach the children their sounds. We aim to teach phonics alongside writing and encourage the children to read and write sounds they hear.


Click below to see all the Jolly Phonics sounds.

Click below to hear the Jolly Phonics sounds in a song:

Progression and Delivery

The pace at which it is suggested the children progress through the programme should be taken as a guide rather than rigidly applied. Using reliable assessments of children’s developing knowledge and skills, teachers will judge the rate at which the children are able to progress through the programme and adapt the pace accordingly. Children are grouped according to the stage they are currently working at.


Tracking and Assessment

All pupils are assessed at half-termly intervals and during daily phonics sessions. Outside the discrete daily phonics sessions there are also opportunities to observe the application of phonic skills e.g. during guided/ shared reading.


Regular monitoring of assessment outcomes allows teachers to ensure that all children are making the expected progress, including children in the most vulnerable groups. This information is also used to identify children who are not making expected progress, allowing early interventions to be put in place.


Year 1 Phonics Screening Check

Every Year One child will take a Phonics Screening Check in the Summer Term designed to identify children, who are not working at the expected level in their reading. This is a phonics-based, progress check where children will be expected to read 40 simple, decodable words, including nonsense words. The results will be reported to parents and children will be rechecked in Year Two if they do not reach the expected level.


Phonics in KS2

If children in KS2 experience difficulty in reading and/or writing, because they have missed or misunderstood a crucial phase of systematic phonics teaching,  additional support will be put in place, in consultation with their parents or carers.