English at St Peter’s
The aim of our Phonics teaching, is to equip our children with the skills they need to become fluent and competent readers. Through a combination of Read Write Inc strategies, Phonics sessions at St.Peter’s are stimulating and engaging.
Our aim at St.Peter’s is to develop a love of books and reading.
- To develop reading strategies and skills: fluency, accuracy, understanding and response to different texts.
- To read and enjoy a variety of texts from a variety of sources.
- To create a strong, embedded reading culture through a rich language environment within classrooms and the wider school environment.
- To deliver a structured and consistent whole school approach to reading.
- To recognise the value of parents / carers as essential components in supporting and developing children’s reading skills and love of reading.
- To rigorously monitor and assess children’s progress in reading and identify those who require extra support and intervene at an early stage.
There is a whole school approach to the teaching of reading. A wide range of reading strategies will be taught throughout all classes that reflect the requirements of the National Curriculum and EYFS Development Matters programme.
Our Phonics teaching begins in Nursery. This first phase is intended to develop children’s listening, vocabulary and speaking skills. As children progress into Reception, they begin learning different sounds and how to blend them together to read simple words.
New sounds are taught throughout Year 1 and children are also taught alternative ways of representing the same sound.
In Year 2, our Phonics sessions focus on spelling, to secure the application of previously taught sounds alongside spelling rules from the National Curriculum.
Phonics teaching continues throughout school for lower ability children as needed, to help improve their reading.
Year 1 Phonics Screening Check
During the Summer term in Year 1, children will take part in the Year 1 Phonics Screening Check. This assesses children’s ability to read 40 real and alien words containing different sounds they have been taught throughout Reception and Year 1. The check is completed by a teacher, who is familiar to the children on a one-to-one basis.
The pass mark for the check is released each year a few weeks after it has taken place and is reported to parents towards the end of the summer term.
We hold a Phonics Check parent meeting in the spring term to share resources with our parents and inform them how they can support their child with Phonics at home.
Children who do not meet the pass mark for the check will re-take it in Year 2.
Below is a link for some sound mats that we use to support the children in school. They have all the Read Write Inc images next to the sounds to help the child remember them.
Here are some useful links that will help your child with Phonics:
As reading is a complex skill with many components, St.Peter’s School has adopted a comprehensive and consistent approach to the teaching of these skills throughout the school. We believe that reading is a valuable and rewarding experience and that the importance of laying a firm foundation in this crucial area will allow children to access all areas of the curriculum successfully. We believe that success in reading opens doors to a world of knowledge .
Reading at Home
At St.Peter’s, we expect our children to read every night and have their home record signed. Research has shown that regular reading not only improves reading speed needed to complete tests in a given time, but also improves vocabulary and composition in writing.
Children that read at least three times a week in school become a reading star and get house points on their reward chart. Consistent reading stars are awarded with extra playtime and classes with the most reading stars are celebrated in assembly.
Reading in School
Children take part in a whole-class Guided Reading session every day from Year 1 to Year 6. Sessions have a different focus each week, which is carefully modelled by the teacher before children practise applying the skill themselves. We use a range of question stems taken from SAT papers, which allow children to strengthen their comprehension skills in a variety of different formats.
We are fortunate to have a number of regular volunteers in school who listen to children one-to-one on a regular basis.
Guided Reading in Reception takes
and uses a simple version of the
question stems in place throughout
school to develop comprehension. In
Nursery, early reading skills are developed
through singing nursery rhymes and
sharing stories throughout the
day. Children are also given a book to take
home and share with Parents/Carers.
Grammar and Punctuation
From Year 1 to Year 6 we follow the Grammar Hammer programme. As part of the English cycle, we devote one focused day a week to the teaching of grammar and children have tests to track their progress. The content of the test feeds into daily grammar teaching at the start of the English lesson.
Each year group has a grammar glossary of terms that they need to know by the end of the school year (see below).
At St.Peter’s, we follow the ‘No Nonsense Spelling Programme’. This is taught every day from Year 3 to 6. Children in Nursery to Year 2 are taught spelling through daily Phonics sessions.
Children practise spellings taken from their year group’s spelling list (see below) on a daily basis, in addition to daily taught sessions.
Children are given a weekly spelling test, which is made up of spellings from the No Nonsense Spelling Programme, Phonics programme and/or the year group’s spelling list.
As part of the English cycle, our children edit their own work with purple pen regularly and correct spelling as well as grammar errors.
Children in Key Stage Two are encouraged to use dictionaries to help with spelling as well as recalling taught spelling rules.
If you have any queries about English please contact Mrs Whiteside, English