The love of reading begins in our Nursery where our youngest pupils are encouraged to choose books independently, learning to hold them correctly, turn pages and beginning to recognise that text has meaning. We play games and go on walks to support our pupils to distinguish between sounds in the environment. Our EYFS Practitioners are enthusiastic in their telling of stories and engage our pupils to join in on repeated texts. They use the ‘Not just…’ to model new vocabulary and this vocabulary is revisited throughout the week. Pupils have the opportunity to learn and recite nursery rhymes through regular timetabled sessions. Our practitioners know the importance of getting our pupils ready for Reception. They teach oral blending through ‘Fred Games’ and teach the mnemonics for the single sounds. As pupils progress, the Nursery pupils are taught in smaller groups matched to their abilities and some pupils are already reading when they move into Reception.
At Keir Hardie, we use synthetic phonics and follow the ‘Read Write Inc’ programme (RWI). This is a systematic and rigorous method of learning letter sounds and blending them together to read, write and spell words.
Here at Keir Hardie Primary School, children have daily phonics sessions in small targeted groups, where they participate in speaking, listening and spelling activities that are matched to their starting points and developing needs. The practitioners draw upon their observations and continuous assessment to ensure children are stretched and challenged. They also identify children who may need additional support. Children work through the different Read Write Inc. Sets 1-3, learning and developing their phonics sounds and knowledge.
Children who are still working on the Read Write Inc phonic system continue to do so by accessing a mixed ability phonics group. This is carried out on a daily basis. Small group intervention groups are used throughout the week as well as one-to-one support for those children identified as requiring additional time to develop their phonic knowledge and spelling skills.