Your browser version is outdated. We recommend that you update your browser to the latest version.

Translate this page

For Braille, large print or audio, please contact us.

We are a member of the Bedale Cluster of schools and a member of the Swaledale Alliance.

Swaledale AllianceSwaledale Alliance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At Hunton and Arrathorne School, we follow a robust phonics programme, ‘Letters & Sounds,’ alongside developing a pleasure and pride in reading. Even our youngest children appreciate the necessity of reading in order to help them to learn more about the world around them as well as entering into imaginary tales.

Long Term Planning

Our Long Term Planning breaks down Letters & Sound phases into half terms, thus forward planning which GPC and words (reading/spelling) will be taught over the academic year (Appendix 1). This Long Term Overview is then broken down into weekly foci. (Appendix 2)

Phase One is introduced within the first week and is then referred to throughout the culture of the classroom as well as specific sessions when appropriate. “The aim is to embed Phase One adult-led activities in a language rich provision that serves the best interests of children by fully recognising their propensity for play and its importance in their development.” (L&S, p1). Rhyming and alliteration is referred to when reading, talking and drawing attention to vocabulary around them. The importance of listening skills is essential to all areas of classroom life; staff are responsive to children’s abilities in this area. 

Phase Two -Five are then taught in sequence. Phase Six contains many concepts which are now within Year 1 National Curriculum ARE (Age Related Expectation) for spelling and have been planned for accordingly. (Appendix 3)

The nature of a mixed age –double curriculum class means that nothing is particularly straightforward. Due to the context of our classes, the Letters & Sounds document is followed but adapted to suit our needs.

For example:

1. Each phase begins by including mention that “The teaching materials in this phase suggests an order for teaching letters.” (L&S, p48, p74, p107, p131). The sequence of sounds have been ordered to best fit existing resources. They are still taught within the same L&S phase with the exception of /y/ making /ee/. An additional sound represented by /ue/ has been included to Phase 3 teaching as Letters and Sounds does not provide a representation of this sound until Phase 5. It is being taught to ensure a full toolkit of sounds enabling children to attempt to record words such as ‘new’ (attempted as ‘nue’). The inclusion of this digraph also prepares for the teaching of split digraphs in Year 1. 

2. The order which words are presented to children is altered slightly so that existing reading books can be used. In order to identify such words, the detailed weekly LTP has colour coded words and sounds, making this information transparent.   

PHASE 1   PHASE 2   PHASE 3   PHASE 4   PHASE 5   PHASE 6   NEXT 200

 

3. The rate at which words for reading and spelling are taught at Hunton and Arrathorne provides a more consistent spread over designated weeks to aide a regular structure to phonics lessons. Each week plans for the coverage of specific new words to read and new words to spell.  (Appendix 2)

4. The detailed weekly LTP also highlights an overlap in phases. An example of this can be seen in FS2 Spring 1 -Whilst the remaining Phase Three GPC are taught, work begins on Phase Four cvcc/ccvc words enabling children to continue their progress on word building skills. Spring 2 shows how Phase Three GPC are revised, Phase Five alternative GPC are introduced and Phase Four adjacent clusters continue the development of word building skills.

5. LTPs allow consolidation weeks or indeed half term foci such as Summer 1. At these points no new GPC are introduced but new words are taught or letter names are covered in more detail.

 

Phonics (Reading/writing) Sessions

Below is the timetable covered with regards to Phonics sessions in Class 1

FS2 Autumn Term

 

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thurs

Fri

Whole class

Teacher led

 

Phonics session

(new GPC)

Phonics Session

(new GPC)

Phonics Session

(new GPC)

 

Whole class

TA led

Send home new ‘fishy’ words and GPC

 

 

 

Phonics Session

(consolidation)

Small group / 1-1 Focused Activity

 

 

Phonic Focus

(reading)

 

Phonic Focus

(writing)

Reading

1-1 with TA

1-1 with Teacher

Half 1-1 with teacher

Half 1-1 with TA

Half 1-1 with teacher

Half 1-1 with TA

 

 

 

FS2 Spring/Summer Term

 

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thurs

Fri

Whole class

Teacher led

Activity Kick off’ session based on English focus for week ahead

 

Phonics Session

(sound/word level)

 

Phonics Session

(text level)

Whole class

TA led

Send home new ‘fishy’ words and GPC

Phonics session

(consolidation)

 

Phonics Session

(spelling)

 

Small group / 1-1 Focused Activity

 

 

Phonic Focus

(word level)

 

Phonic Focus

(text level)

Reading

1-1 with TA

1-1 with Teacher

Half 1-1 with teacher

Half 1-1 with Volunteer

Half 1-1 with teacher

Half 1-1 with TA

 

 

Year 1 Autumn/Spring/Summer Term

 

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thurs

Fri

Whole class

Teacher led

‘Activity Kick off’ session based on English focus for week ahead

Phonics Session

 

Phonics Session

 

Phonics Session

 

Phonics Session

+Spag

(Review)

Whole class

TA led

 

 

Phonics session

(grammar/punctuation)

 

Phonics Session

(spelling)

Small group Focused Activity

 

 

English ‘day’

 

English ‘day’

Reading

1-1 with TA

Independent comprehension

Half Guided Book with teacher

Half 1-1 with Volunteer

Half Guided Book with teacher

Half 1-1 with TA

1-1 with Volunteer

 

Phonic sessions are taught to an entire year group at a time. New learning is always introduced by a teacher first. TA led sessions focus on further practise and application of skills.

Lessons follow the ‘sequence of teaching in a discrete phonics session’ as outlined in Letters and Sounds. (L&S p49)

  • Revisit and review
  • Teach
  • Practise
  • Apply

Teaching GPC

Phonic sessions are approached in a multi-sensory way enabling children to find a ‘hook’ for their new knowledge. Initially new GPC are enhanced with songs, rhymes and actions, even food! The first collection of digraphs are presented using a mnemonic, as suggested in Letters and Sounds, when reference is made to resources for teaching sounds. “Resources…cards with a letter on one side and its mnemonic on the other.” L&S, p53

Definition of ‘Mnemonic: ’a system such as a pattern of letters, ideas, or associations which assists in remembering something.’ (https://www.lexico.com/en/definition/mnemonic)

For this reason, a tried and tested use of Jolly Phonic mnemonic posters, songs and actions has been adopted for use until the point at which children no longer need these scaffolds.

Teaching HFWs

High Frequency Words are broken down into ‘decodable’ words and ‘tricky’ words within Letters and Sounds, p194. Decodable words take care of themselves- once sounds within the phase have been taught, such words can be decoded using phonetic strategies. With respect to ‘tricky’ words, also known as Common Exception Words within National Curriculum, we refer to them as ‘fishy’ words.  As each new ‘fishy’ word is taught, it is presented on a fish illustration. Children learn that these words are their own being and cannot be blended to read nor segmented to spell. We refer to the problem of ‘stretching’ (segmenting) these fishy words – their blood and guts would come out! Instead one must recall by sight what it says and how to spell it. Spelling strategies are taught discretely alongside phonetic skills.

Year 1 children use ‘spelling cards’ (Appendix 4) to support their reading and spelling of HFWs. They begin with Phase Two and move through to Phase Five. Following this, spelling cards group together words from Next 200 common words (L&S, p195). Finally, spelling cards present lists of words grouped according to patterns.

Assessment

FS2 children are assessed formatively from session to session according to their participation and responses. Summative assessment is used to monitor overall recall of sounds and words. Assessment includes reading and writing GPCs taught in isolation and their use in phonetically decodable words and reading and spelling ‘fishy’ words taught. (Appendix 9)

Year 1 children are assessed similarly. In addition to their assessed recall of GPC taught, they take part in a half termly ‘phonics screening’ diagnostic test. Assessment of spelling phased words, both decodable and ‘fishy,’ take place on a class rotation system roughly every three weeks.

 

Additional Support

We recognise that at times children may need support to ‘keep up’ with new learning. This support is provided either through instant, responsive adult led activities or through planned support ranging from short bursts of specific teaching to a longer lasting focus. Need for support may be identified after summative assessment or in response to immediate daily performance in a task. Our main focus is on ‘keeping up’ rather than ‘catching up.’

 

Terminology

Key terminology is used with children. An example has been included in Appendix 5. This document is shared with parents of new starters to our FS2 year group.

 

Home School Partnership

At Hunton and Arrathorne School, we highly value the difference that parents/carers (home) can make to their child’s progress. Children are asked to read at home 5 times a week. Little and often helps to embed new learning. New ‘fishy’ words are added weekly to a key fob. We also share a ‘phonic book’ with home which is updated weekly with new GPCs. Once a collection of ‘fishy’ words have been taught, they are also represented in the ‘phonic book’ in plain print form thus removing another scaffold.

The difference between FS2 and Year 1 is shown by the removal of ‘fishy’ characters being sent home. Words are taught within school and are represented on staged spelling cards. Phonic books no longer share mnemonics.

 

Reading Books

Reading books include Oxford Reading Tree, Big Cat and Pearson Phonic Bug. Our collection of resources for learning to read is also supported by word strips and caption booklets. Although ‘colour banding’ is not used, books have been grouped and labelled in order to collate books of the same level.

Each collection has been created after considering the order in which GPCs and words have been taught, alongside fluency, comprehension and stamina. Each collection is only released to a child once they have been explicitly taught in school. See Appendix 6 for a list of books and further detail about the content of each book.  Once children have embedded their Phase four skills, they may move onto our ‘blue’ reading basket. This collection has been created for those children within FS2 who are ready to move on to Phase five ahead of general class teaching. This so called ‘accelerated-holding’ basket allows children to be introduced to Phase five GPCs during a 1-1 reading session. The front of each book states words and sounds that will be needed to access the book.

Year One sees the teaching of Phase five sounds at a rapid pace. Reading books have been grouped into 2 halves according to GPCs taught. Children will be able to choose any book from this collection containing words that are being taught within that half term. The front of each book states words and sounds that will be needed to access the book.

Once children reach a secure ability in Phase Five, they are able to progress to non-decodable books. There is no restraint placed on reading progress due to age/key stage. “Within each key stage, schools therefore have flexibility to introduce content earlier or later than set out in the programme of study. In addition, schools can introduce key stage content during an earlier stage if appropriate.” NC, p18.

 

Further Information about Reading

Timetable of Reading Activities

FS2

 

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thurs

Fri

Teacher

 

1-1 (all chn)

1-1 (half chn)

1-1 (half chn)

 

TA

1-1  (all chn)

 

 

1-1 (half chn)

 

Other Adult

 

 

 1-1 with Mrs Knight (half chn)

 

 

Independent

 

Duvet reading –bedtime books

Phonic task

Phonic task

 

 

FS2 children read 1-1 with an adult 4 times per week. This sessions uses the system of individual books which are taken home by the child. As children progress in their reading skills, the focus of 1-1 sessions deepen. Key elements of reading sessions include decoding, fluency and comprehension. Fluency includes the beginnings of automaticity, accuracy and prosody.

 

Year 1

 

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thurs

Fri

Teacher

 

 

Guided Book

 (half chn)

Guided Book

 (half chn)

 

TA

1-1  (all chn)

 

 

 

 

Other Adult

 

 

1-1 with Mrs Knight (half chn)

 

 

Independent

 

comprehension

Reading own book

Reading own book

1-1 with Mr Lawrenson

 

Year 1 children read with an adult 3 times per week. Key elements of reading sessions continue to include decoding, fluency and comprehension. Fluency includes the development of automaticity, accuracy and prosody.

One reading session per week is a group guided read with the teacher.

Year 1 children are separated into ‘guided reading’ groups according to ability. A ‘Pearson Active Bug Club’ book is selected and read as a group. Guided reading sessions follow a similar sequence beginning with oral predictions, picture walks and discussions of related topics linked to their own experiences. Focus words and sounds are examined and a main focus to consider when reading the book is shared. Each child has their own copy of the text and is prompted to read a certain amount before coming together and answering focused questions relating to ARE for reading. (Appendix 7 & 8, adapted using objectives from Heather Russell, 2016)

When reading their individual books 1-1 with other adults, focus is given to using their phonetic decoding skills alongside exploring vocabulary and comprehension skills. Support from the wider community celebrates the joy of reading from a different angle, raising the importance assigned to it and also the time that such volunteers can offer to individual children. Such volunteers seek to bring the book alive, giving children the chance to explore a range of topics linked to the story through oral discussion, plotting locations on world maps or even experiencing real artefacts.

 

Reading Culture

NC states that “Schools should do everything to promote wider reading.” (NC, P12). Surrounding our teaching of early reading are many examples of creating a pleasure in reading and also encouraging reading in a range of situations.

Within Class 1, children have access to a large collection of fiction books. They include traditional tales, modern stories, culturally and socially diverse books, rhythm and rhyme and the much loved, old favourites. There is a collection of non-fiction books on various topics. Children have access to these books to support their learning throughout the school day. FS2 children also have a weekly ‘duvet’ session where they lay out on a duvet, cushions and blankets and share books together. The joy of being 4 years old and being able to recite your favourite story to a friend is a wonderful thing. FS2 children choose one of these books to take home each week. We refer to this scheme as ‘Bedtime Books.’

Year 1 children use the duvet when reading their own books during guided reading sessions. They value the relaxing time to disappear into their own stories.

Class 1 has access to a huge non-fiction library situated in Class 2. Children are encouraged to use these books to support their learning.

Children regularly bring in their own books from home to share with the class, either at story time or as an added extra for a friend’s learning theme.