The Teaching of Phonics and Reading at Marcham CE Primary School.
In Foundation Stage, KS1 and throughout our early reading programme we are committed to the teaching of phonics. We do so using Letters and Sounds, supplemented by Jolly Phonics and Phonics Play. We continue this part of their learning journey through the teaching of grammar, punctuation and spellings.
Letters and Sounds is a phonics resource published by the Department for Education and Skills in 2007. It aims to build children’s speaking and listening skills in their own right as well as to prepare children for learning to read by developing their phonic knowledge and skills. It sets out a detailed and systematic programme for teaching phonic skills for children starting by the age of five, with the aim of them becoming fluent readers by age seven. There are six overlapping phases.
Jolly Phonics is a child centred approach to teaching literacy through synthetic phonics. With actions for each of the 42 letter sounds, the multi-sensory method is very motivating and engaging for the pupils.
Phonics Play is a web-based interactive site with games and fun resources to augment the children’s understanding of Phonics and support teachers and teaching assistants in their planning and delivery.
For those children who need extra support with their reading at KS1, we use Fischer Family Trust intervention (Wave 3) to help diminish the differences between them and their peers. This intensive 10-20 week daily programme accelerates their learning so that they can access class or group teaching and has proved to be highly successful.
We acknowledge that, although outcomes for Phonics at Marcham are good, there are a few children who need still extra support as they continue beyond KS1. We use, among other tailored programmes for specific need, the Project X intervention. Based on research, Project X is a modern, reading and writing programme with highly motivating books and interactive digital resources. Although specially developed to motivate boys and address the gender gap in literacy, we have found its appeal universal, inspiring both boys and girls and, again, leading to successful outcomes.
By the end of KS2 our Reading levels are significantly above both local and national averages and, in 2016, ranked in the top 5% of schools.