Burnham-on-Sea Infant School
Early Reading and Phonics Curriculum Overview
Curriculum Lead: Helen Lock
Our curriculum approach to reading reflects our ethos statement ‘Working Together Building Futures’ providing all our children rich opportunities to develop core skills of phonics and comprehension and a passion and enjoyment for reading.
Intent (curriculum design, coverage and appropriateness) :
Reading and a love of books is at the heart of what we do. The development of skills in reading is a primary focus for all our pupils because we know learning to read enables our pupils to read to learn. Having the key skills of decoding (blending and segmenting sounds to read words) and comprehension (understanding what has been read) opens up an exciting world and is essential for progression as children move through the school and on to Key Stage 2 and beyond.
The aims of our Literacy reading curriculum are to develop pupils who:
Implementation (curriculum delivery, teaching and assessment):
We use Unlocking Letters and Sounds which was validated by the DfE in December 2021.
We begin teaching phonics in the first few weeks of term 1 in Reception and children make rapid progress in their reading journey. Children begin to learn the main sounds heard in the English Language and how they can be represented, as well as learning ‘Common Exception’ words for Phases 2, 3 and 4. They use these sounds to read and write simple words, captions and sentences. Children leave Reception being able to apply the phonemes taught within Phase 2, 3 and 4.
In Year 1 through Phase 5a, b and c, they learn any alternative spellings and pronunciations for the graphemes and additional Common Exception Words. By the end of Year 1 children will have mastered using phonics to decode and blend when reading and segment when spelling. In Year 1 all children are screened using the national Phonics Screening Check.
In Year 2, phonics continues to be revisited to ensure mastery of the phonetic code and any child who does not meet age related expectations will continue to receive support to close identified gaps.
For further details please see the Unlocking Letters and Sounds progression
To ensure no child is left behind at any point in the progression, children are regularly assessed and supported to keep up through bespoke 1-1 interventions. These include GPC recognition and blending and segmenting interventions. The lowest attaining 20% of pupils are closely monitored to ensure these interventions have an impact.
At Burnham Infants we promote a 'phonics first' approach and in both our guided reading sessions at school and in the books children take home, texts are very closely matched to a child's current phonics knowledge so that every child can experience real success in their reading. In these crucial early stages of reading we primarily use books from Ransom Reading Stars Phonics , to ensure complete fidelity to the Unlocking Letters and Sounds progression we follow.
Once children progress beyond decodable texts, they move onto our book scheme so that they can continue to progress in their decoding, fluency and comprehension skills to become avid, expert readers.
Impact (attainment and progress):
The above approach at Burnham on Sea Infant School results in a fun, engaging, high quality Literacy education that results in children reading regularly for information and for enjoyment and pleasure. Children will be able to discuss books with excitement and interest. Children will use their reading skills as a key tool to help them learn. Children are able to blend, segment and sight read words to enable them to read with fluency. This will be reflected in the reading levels achieved at the the end of KS1 and the phonics test results at the end of Year 1.
The Reading / phonics lead at Burnham-on-Sea will;
Oxford Owl Reading has 250 free eBooks for you to share with your child as well as simple ideas, top tips, activities and games to help your child with their reading . https://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/welcome-back/for-home/reading-owl/reading
Offers strategies, lessons,activities and ideas designed to help young children learn to read.
How to read with your child Research proves that children who enjoy reading do better at school in all subjects. Reading together increases literacy skills and does .
Unfortunately not the ones with chocolate chips.
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