Our Approach to the Teaching of Phonics and Reading
Learning to read; reading to learn
The teaching of Phonics is an integral part of the curriculum in both the Foundation and Key Stage 1 classrooms.
We follow the National phonics programme, ‘Letters and Sounds’, where children are taught the 44 phonemes that make up all the sounds required for reading and spelling. These phonemes include those made by just one letter and those that are made by two or more. As the children grow in confidence and experience, they are introduced to alternative ways of representing the same sound, e.g. ‘ee’ can be represented as ‘ee’, ‘ea’, ‘e-e’, ‘e’. The teaching of phonics is of a very high priority for all teachers as it enables pupils to decode for reading and encode for spelling.
We ensure that our teaching of phonics is rigorous, structured and enjoyable. Children have discrete, daily phonics sessions where they are introduced to new phonemes, can practise and revise previous learning and have plenty of opportunities to apply the knowledge they have.
We use a range of multi-sensory strategies to enthuse and engage the children, including the use of interactive whiteboards, magnetic letters, speaking and listening, songs, rhymes and practical activities. Children work with pace and are encouraged to apply their knowledge across the curriculum with any reading or writing activities.
Alongside the teaching of Phonics, children have access to a language rich environment where they are able to apply their decoding skills and develop language comprehension in order to ‘read’. We use a variety of reading schemes from Oxford Reading Tree, Collins, Badger and Pandora. Texts are supplemented by the provision of First News newspapers and web based reading materials including the Purple Mash website.'
English Subject Leader
Welcome to Bug Club!
Dear Parent or Carer,
Our school has recently acquired a reading programme called Bug Club that we’d like to share with you.
Below you will find key information about the scheme and how you can get involved. We hope that you and your child will love these books and enjoy reading them at home.
What is Bug Club?
Bug Club is a finely-levelled reading resource, which ensures that all children can find books at exactly the right level for them. What’s more, there are online versions for every printed title and a personalised website for each child.
Using the online reading world
If you have access to an internet connection, your child can enjoy reading Bug Club books online as well as in print. Each child has a unique homepage and can log into it by following these steps:
Reading a book online
We allocate books to your child according to their reading levels. These books will appear in the ‘My Stuff’ area of their personal homepages.
Throughout the books there are quiz questions for your child to complete. To answer a question, just click on the bug icon. Your child does not need to finish all the quiz questions in one sitting and can come back to a book later.
When your child has finished all the quiz questions in a book, he or she will earn ‘ActiveLearn Coins’. By reading more books, your child will earn enough coins to ‘buy’ a reward in one of the many reward schemes. The answers to the quiz questions will be sent back to our teacher site so that we can see how your child is progressing. We will also be able to assign more books for your child to read if the virtual book bag is running low.
When your child has finished a book, it will move to ‘My Library’. Children can read these books again if they want to, or they can choose new books from ‘My Stuff’.
Until they are fluent readers, younger children will benefit from reading aloud to you as often as possible. By the time they are in Years 5 or 6, many children prefer to read silently to themselves. Create quiet opportunities for them to do so, but then talk to them about the book they are reading.
When sharing a book with your child, try to take opportunities to talk about the book - before, during and after reading.
Before reading: look at the book cover and talk about your child’s expectations. Is the book likely to be fiction or non-fiction? Have you read other books together about these characters or by this author? What does your child think the book is going to be about?
While reading: support your child when unknown words need tackling: you can sound them out, split them into syllables, or identify suffixes and prefixes. Remind your child to listen to the words while reading them, to make sure that they make sense. Have a ‘meaning check’ every now and again to ensure that your child understands the text.
After reading: talk about the book. What was it about? Did it match your child’s expectations? Ask questions beginning with the words how and why to check that your child has been able to read between the lines. Ask whether anything seemed puzzling. Then ask your child to explain what the best and worst bits of the book were, and why.
If your child is having trouble using the pupil world, help can be found in the Help Section of ActiveLearn Primary (in the top right-hand corner of the website).
Please note: We strongly recommend using Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox web browsers with ActiveLearn. If you prefer to use Internet Explorer, please check you have at least IE9 in order for everything to work as it should.