We recognise that mastery in phonics is fundamental to children being able to access a broad range of fiction and non-fiction texts, across the curriculum. We aim to achieve this by teaching phonics systematically to address the needs of all learners.
RWI Phonics is closely matched to the National Curriculum. The Speed Sounds Lessons follow a careful progression, with sounds being introduced sequentially in a structured and systematic way.
We have high expectations for all children who come to Keir Hardie and we aim to bring the best out of every child whilst recognising their uniqueness and meeting their individual needs.
We aim for the majority of children to have completed phonics by mid Year 2.
Children who have completed the RWI Scheme move onto written comprehension, where they build on the oral skills they have gained while learning to read.
We use the RWI programme to systematically and rigorously teach graphemes and how to decode to read and encode to spell.
In nursery our pupils begin synthetic phonics in Spring – first learning the mnemonics alongside learning to oral blend. When pupils are ready, they begin to learn the graphemes. Some pupils leave nursery, already able to read phonetically spelled words.
As pupils progress through the programme they read books which are matched to their phonological knowledge. We stream our phonics groups across year groups to ensure that every child is being taught at the level they can read. Half termly assessments and gaps analysis ensure that our practitioners can focus the lessons on our pupils’ abilities and move them on to their next steps.
Our school ethos which is summarised in our “MAGIC” Habits, is supported in every lesson.
Children are Motivated to join in with each part of the lesson. We encourage a positive Attitude to learning to read, Children are supported to use their Gumption to keep going and never give up, they know we will be there to support every step. Independence is achieved through the ‘My turn, Your turn’ model. Communication is through shared discussions, answering comprehension questions and ‘Turn to Your Partner.”
Our aim is for pupils to become fluent readers by the end of KS1. Pupils will have begun to answer questions to show their ability to comprehend what they have read, at, at least, age expected level.
Attainment in phonics is measured by the Phonics Screening Check in Year 1, however we recognise that the PSC is only an indicator of accurate reading. Our reading curriculum goes beyond the results of the statutory PSC.
Many pupils transition into Year 2 above age related expectations and are already reading with an understanding of comprehension and with some fluency.
We do not want our pupils to struggle within groups where the reading is too difficult and lose the engagement and pleasure that we want them to experience as they learn to read. It is equally important that higher attainers are not reading at a lower level, which could lead to a lack of enthusiasm.
Our slowest progress and lowest 20% attaining pupils are given extra tuition to accelerate their phonetic reading skills to catch up and keep up with their peers. Although some children will be working below their reading age, they will have made progress from their starting points and for some this will have been accelerated.