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Our Lady & St. Gerard's

R.C. Primary School

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Phonics is the method used to teach reading.  It teaches children to tune into sounds and to 'decode' words by breaking the words into smaller units.  Children learn to blend these sounds during their reading and segment the sounds for spelling.  Although we have 26 letters in the alphabet, there are around 45 sounds and lots of variations for spelling!  Children in Reception and Key Stage 1 follow a structured, synthetic phonics programme using Bug Club Phonics.  Phonics is taught using multi-sensory, engaging activities and resources which work to support and enhance the Bug Club Phonics resources. 


Phonics is taught in a progressive way through 6 phases.  It is expected that children will reach Phase 6 in Year 2.  However, all children learn at different rates and therefore, phonics teaching is tailored to individual needs.  If children are not on track to meet the phonics expectations, interventions and additional support may be required.  We will work closely with parents if this is the case.


Your child's home reading book will be matched to their phonics ability.  Teachers are continually assessing the phonological awareness and may send word cards, additional reading books etc. to help your child.  Please try to spend time working on these with your child.


Please see our Reading pages for more information.

Our Phonics long term overview

Phonics Screening Tests

In Year One, there is a statutory Phonics Screening Check which takes place in the Summer Term.  This assesses each child's ability to decode words.  Children are also assessed on their ability to read 'pseudo words' (non-words).  The test contains 40 words/non-words in total and children need to read around 32 words correctly to achieve the standard.  If your child does not meet this standard, there will be a re-test in the Summer Term of Year 2.

Phonics screening sample materials