The Read Write Inc Phonics programme.
Learning to read is the most important thing your child will learn at our school. Everything else depends on it, so we put as much energy as we possibly can into making sure that every single child learns to read as quickly as possible.
We want your child to love reading – and to want to read for themselves. This is why we put our efforts into making sure they develop a love of books as well as simply learning to read.
How will my child be taught to read?
We start by teaching phonics to the children in Early Years. This means that they learn how to ‘read’ the sounds in words and how those sounds can be written down. This is essential for reading, but it also helps children learn to spell well. We teach the children simple ways of remembering these sounds and letters. Ask them to show you what these are.
The children also practise reading (and spelling) what we call ‘tricky words’ or ‘red words’, such as ‘once,’ ‘have,’ ‘said’ and ‘where’. These are words that the children can not decode through using their phonic knowledge.
The children practise their reading with books that match the phonics and the ‘red words’ they know. They start believing that they can read and this does wonders for their confidence.
The teachers read to the children too, so the children get to know all sorts of stories, poetry and information books. They learn many more words this way and it also helps their writing.
How will I know how well my child is doing?
We will always let you know how well your child is doing.
We use various ways to find out how the children are getting on in reading. We use the information to decide what reading group they should be in. Your child will work with children who are at the same reading level as him or her. Children will move to a different group if they are making faster progress than the others. Your child will have one-to-one support if we think he or she needs some extra help to keep up.
We also use a reading test so that we can make sure that all our children are at the level that they should be for their age compared to all the children across the country.
In the summer term, the government asks us to do a phonics check of all the Year 1 children. That gives us extra information about their progress. We will talk to you about how well your child has done, and especially if we have any worries at all.
How long will it take to learn to read well?
By the end of Year 2, your child should be able to read aloud books that are at the right level for his or her age.
What can I do to help? Is there anything that I shouldn’t do?
Your child will bring different sorts of books home from school. Please trust your child’s teacher to choose the book(s) that will help your child the most. We encourage you to read with/ to your child for at least 10 minutes a day. Even if you are reading to them, this is still supporting their reading development, allowing them to absorb the vocabulary used as well as begin to think imaginatively about the text.
When reading a book together, help your child to sound out the letters in words that they are unsure of and then to ‘push’ the sounds together to make a whole word.
Try not to refer to the letters by their letter name. Help your child to focus on the sounds.
You can hear how to say the sounds correctly through the attached clip: