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English

In studying English pupils develop skills in spoken language, reading, writing, spelling, vocabulary, grammar and punctuation. Literacy skills are applied across the curriculum and wherever possible, strong links are made between subjects.

READING

How children learn to read at Newton Bluecoat CE Primary School:

At Newton Bluecoat, we believe that children grow as readers in an environment rich in literature.  From three to eleven years old pupils have access to a wide range of age-appropriate books in their classrooms. At every opportunity, our teachers enrich on-going topics and events by reading stories and sharing non-fiction texts with children. Older children engage in extended studies of longer novels through a range of drama, discussions and written tasks while younger pupils respond to texts through role-play, small world scenarios and music.

Floppy’s Phonics

Children begin to learn to decode when they enter the Nursery programme at three years old. They listen carefully for units of sounds in words using activities from the Letters and Sounds programme Phase One. They enjoy playing with words and language and build a repertoire of songs and rhymes.  They are exposed to print in the school and wider environment and may begin to recognise words of personal significance. They share predictable texts and begin to join in with repeated phrases and anticipate the development of the narrative.

As children move into Reception, they explore and secure their understanding of grapheme-phoneme correspondence through Floppy’s Phonics Phases Two and Three. Through daily whole class and small group activities, they use their knowledge of sounds to tackle new words. This learning is reinforced through regular practice with phonologically decodable texts such as the Traditional Tales, Floppy’s Phonics and Word Sparks. Children also build their sight vocabulary through exposure to repetitive texts such as the Oxford Reading Tree stories.

This continues throughout Key Stage One.  As decoding becomes more fluent and sight vocabulary expands children tackle a wider range of text styles, sharing and discussing both fiction and non-fiction books.  They learn to use textual signposts to navigate texts and books more independently.  They consolidate their phonological decoding skills through Floppy’s Phonics Phases Four, Five in Year One. In Year Two, they complete Phase Six.

Oxford Reading Tree

Once children are secure with their phonics sounds and they can accurately blend the sounds and read fluently, we use the Oxford Reading tree scheme to support our children in developing their reading skills. The books are banded according to their level of difficulty, providing children with a challenging reading experience, which also allows them to use their developing phonic and whole word knowledge to read independently. The Oxford Reading tree scheme comprises of a mixture of Fiction, Non-fiction and Traditional Tales, which allows children to experience a variety of texts. Oxford Reading Tree books include series such as Floppy’s Phonics, Biff, Chip and Kipper, Traditional Tales and Songbirds Phonics.  Once children in KS2 can read accurately and fluently, alongside their school readers, they select an independent reading book from the school library.

In Key Stage Two, children are exposed to texts of increasing length and complexity.  They look for links between books and authors and approach their reading more analytically.  They continue to develop preferences for genres and authors.  They learn to identify more sophisticated language devices and acquire new vocabulary.

We have access to the full scheme of Oxford Reading Tree e-books so all of these texts can be enjoyed remotely as well as in school.

Phonics Screening Check

The phonics screening check is designed to confirm whether children have learnt phonic decoding to an appropriate standard. It will identify children who need extra help to improve their decoding skills.

The check consists of one list of 40 words, comprising 20 real words and 20 pseudo-words.

The phonics screening check is administered to all Year 1 children and children in Year 2 who did not meet the required standard in Year 1 or have not taken it before. The screening check is administered towards the end of the summer term (June), on a one-to-one basis by the class teacher. The child’s phonic screening check score will be reported to parents by the end of the summer term. Any children who have still not passed their screening in Year 2 or KS2 will have extra support and intervention put in place.

 We have put together some videos from our Year 1 children to show you the correct phoneme (sound) for each grapheme (letter or combination of letters)

 Phonics Terminology

Phoneme = one sound made by one letter

Grapheme = The name grapheme is given to the letter or combination of letters that represents a phoneme. 

Digraph = two letters working together to make one sound e.g. “ch,” “sh.”

Trigraph = three letters working together to make one sound e.g. “igh,” “air.”

 ‘What is a grapheme?’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vsWtyKqpHko

‘What is a phoneme?’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dwFvD5Cv9n8