Early Reading and Phonics

At Haddenham Community Infant School reading is taught through a variety of approaches.  

When the children start school in Reception they are introduced to phonics and sound blending work through the Letters and Sounds programme of teaching and this continues throughout the children's time in our school.  

The children are taught in differentiated sessions of twenty minutes daily through dynamic groupings across the whole school.  This is supplemented with various teaching strategies which are responsive to children's needs.

Letters and Sounds:

  • a six phase teaching programme
  • teaches a high quality phonics with the intention of equipping children with the phonic knowledge and skills they need to become fluent readers and writers by the age of seven.

The reading scheme is grouped into levels of difficulty reflective of the phonics knowledge they acquire up to the end of phase five letters and sounds. 

Children enter Reception and are initially assessed in their early reading and phonic knowledge skills.  A reading level is chosen that matches the child's reading ability.  Some children may begin by reading stories without text.  This enables the children to develop their early reading skills such as using picture clues, knowing how to hold a book and turn the pages and talking about the story.

As their phonics knowledge increases and they are beginning to blend and segment the sounds they have learned they are given books with a small amount of text.  Rainbow words based on the first one hundred words.  Phonemes are sent home to reflect the teaching that has taken place and to revise and reinforce learning.

Children read regularly with adults in school.  Children read individually, part of a guided group or through extra support/intervention groups.  During guided reading sessions the teachers teach reading skills 

It is important that the children experience a wide variety of texts to develop their reading confidence.  Our reading scheme ensures the children read a variety of genres to develop a love of reading. 

Early Reading and phonics is constantly assessed through phonics or reading groups and more formally half termly and termly. In reading activities the teacher assesses the children's reading for accuracy, use of phonic knowledge to read new words, self correction and an understanding of the text.

In Year 1 the children take part in the Phonics Screening Check which assesses their ability to decode words using their learned phonics knowledge.

In Year 2 the children complete the Reading Standard Assessment Tasks (SATs) as well as the PIRA assessments scheme.  Curriculum reading attainment is reported to parents in the end of year reports.