Phonics at The Meadows
This reading dog relates entirely to learning to decode a text with the use of Phonics. The aim of the Letters and Sounds programme is to ensure the automatic
reading of all words – decodable and tricky - to allow children to access a broad range of texts.
So... what exactly is phonics?
They are taught GPCs. This stands for grapheme phoneme correspondences. This simply means that they are taught all the phonemes in the English language and ways of writing them down. These sounds are taught in a particular order. The first sounds to be taught are s, a, t, p.
Children are taught to be able to blend. This is when children say the sounds that make up a word and are able to merge the sounds together until they can hear what the word is. This skill is vital in learning to read.
Children are also taught to segment. This is the opposite of blending. Children are able to say a word and then break it up into the phonemes that make it up. This skill is vital in being able to spell words.
What makes Phonics tricky?
So why bother learning Phonics?
Letters and Sounds Progression
The following information is taken from the Letters and Sounds documentation.
Phase One falls largely within the Communication, Language and Literacy area of learning in the Early Years Foundation Stage. In particular, it will support linking sounds and letters
in the order in which they occur in words, and naming and sounding the letters of the alphabet.
Children entering Phase Two will have experienced a wealth of listening activities, including songs, stories and rhymes. They will be able to distinguish between speech sounds and many will be able to blend and segment words orally. Some will also be able to recognise spoken words that rhyme and will be able to provide a string of rhyming words, but inability to do this does not prevent moving on to Phase Two as these speaking and listening activities continue. (See Appendix 3: Assessment).
The purpose of this phase is to teach at least 19 letters, and move children on from oral blending and segmentation to blending and segmenting with letters. By the end of the phase many children should be able to read some VC and CVC words and to spell them either using magnetic letters or by writing the letters on paper or on whiteboards. During
the phase they will be introduced to reading two-syllable words and simple captions. They will also learn to read some high-frequency ‘tricky’ words: the, to, go, no.
Letter progression (one set per week)
Set 1: s a t p
Set 2: i n m d
Set 3: g o c k
Set 4: ck e u r
Set 5: h b f, ff l, ll ss
Children entering Phase Three will know around 19 letters and be able to blend phonemes to read VC words and segment VC words to spell. While many children will be able to read and spell CVC words, they all should be able to blend and segment CVC words orally.
The purpose of this phase is to teach another 25 graphemes, most of them comprising two letters (e.g. oa), so the children can represent each of about 42 phonemes by a grapheme (the additional phoneme /zh/ found in the word vision will be taught at Phase Five). Children also continue to practise CVC blending and segmentation in this phase and will apply their knowledge of blending and segmenting to reading and spelling simple two-syllable words and captions. They will learn letter names during this phase, learn to read some more tricky words and also begin to learn to spell some of these words.
Set 6: j v w x*
Set 7: y z, zz qu*
The following digraphs are then taught:
Consonant digraphs: ch, sh, th, ng
Vowel digraphs and trigraphs: ai, ee, igh, oa, oo, ar, or, ur, ow, oi, ear, air, ure, er.
Children entering Phase Four will be able to represent each of 42 phonemes by a grapheme, and be able to blend phonemes to read CVC words and segment CVC words
for spelling. They will have some experience in reading simple two-syllable words and captions. They will know letter names and be able to read and spell some tricky words.
The purpose of this phase is to consolidate children’s knowledge of graphemes in reading and spelling words containing adjacent consonants and polysyllabic words.
Children entering Phase Five are able to read and spell words containing adjacent consonants and some polysyllabic words.
The purpose of this phase is for children to broaden their knowledge of graphemes and phonemes for use in reading and spelling. They will learn new graphemes and alternative
pronunciations for these and graphemes they already know, where relevant. Some of the alternatives will already have been encountered in the high-frequency words that have
been taught. Children become quicker at recognising graphemes of more than one letter in words and at blending the phonemes they represent. When spelling words they will learn to choose the appropriate graphemes to represent phonemes and begin to build word-specific knowledge of the spellings of words.
By the beginning of Phase Six, children should know most of the common grapheme–phoneme correspondences (GPCs). They should be able to read hundreds of words,
doing this in three ways:
■ reading the words automatically if they are very familiar;
■ decoding them quickly and silently because their sounding and blending routine is
now well established;
■ decoding them aloud.
Children’s spelling should be phonemically accurate, although it may still be a little unconventional at times. Spelling usually lags behind reading, as it is harder.
During this phase, children become fluent readers and increasingly accurate spellers.
How is Phonics taught at The Meadows?
Recently and previously learned phoneme-grapheme correspondences, blending and segmenting skills as appropriate
New phoneme-grapheme correspondences; skills of blending and segmenting; tricky words
New phoneme – grapheme correspondences; skills of blending and segmenting
New knowledge and skills while reading/writing
At The Meadows, home learning in terms of reading is a way to consolidate what has been taught in school. It is not about teaching your child how to read. They are given texts that are 90% decodable that apply the sounds they have already be taught. Each child is allocated three different books:
1. A fully decodable text that applies their sound of the week (with a sticker that says 'I can read this to you')
2, A decodable text to share with an adult. This is a text that is to be adult-led (this book will have a sticker 'Share this book with me')
3. A reading for pleasure book. This may be a book that the children can read independently. It will not be phonetically based, but is there to encourage a love of reading and to widen their breadth of reading.
To be updated.