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Appleton Roebuck Primary School

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Phonics and Early Reading

Phonics and Reading

We teach Phonics through Letters and Sounds.  This is a systematic approach for teaching children to read using phonics. It is used in many schools in England, but is not a mandatory part of the National Curriculum. It is split into six phases, from starting to learn about sounds at nursery to becoming fluent readers around age 7.


Reading is taught through Bug Club.  Bug Club is a literacy program designed to support the effective and engaging teaching of reading for primary students in Foundation to Year 6. These levelled readers can be used for modelled whole-class reading, guided reading, independent and take-home reading from F - 6.


Please see more information in the Phonics and Early Reading Tab in the Curriculum Section of the website for our statement.  This will give you a detailed view of how we approach this in school.  Also, the Parents' section of the website has a Phonics tab with more information about the letters and sounds programme.  We also do regular workshops for families to help with this. Do get in touch should you need any help or have any questions.


We passionately believe that teaching children to read and write independently and as soon as possible is one of the core purposes of a primary school. These fundamental skills not only hold the keys to the rest of the curriculum but also have a huge impact on children’s self-esteem and future life chances.


We believe that reading  along with the vocabulary skills that it develops is the key to all learning and so the impact of our reading curriculum goes beyond and is embedded across the entire curriculum for our children.


We strive for enthusiastic and motivated readers that gain confidence in reading a wide variety of genres and text types, encouraging a love of literature and an enjoyment of reading for pleasure.



We teach children to read effectively every day in the foundation stage through to key stage 1 using the ‘Letters and Sounds’ programme which provides a synthetic approach to the teaching of phonics across a structured progression of 6 phases.


Pupils who are still struggling to decode and spell are identified quickly and differentiated sessions are targeted ensuring pupils continue to make good progress.


Pupils go onto deepen their phonic skills through practise in reading books, their English work and across the whole wider curriculum, ensuring that phonic knowledge and skills are consistently practiced and secured. The school used the Bug Club scheme but also has a range of other reading materials to support. Classrooms are well resourced with phonics resources which are readily available to empower pupils to independently make correct spelling choices.


We strongly believe that working in partnership with parents is key to unlocking success. We therefore also take parents on a phonics journey, offering phonics workshops where they develop key skills together which can be then shared at home.


Pupils are given the opportunity to listen to an extensive array of high quality books during ‘story time’ across the whole school developing a shared love, passion and enjoyment of reading.


Drama and role-play contribute to the quality of pupils’ learning by providing opportunities for pupils to develop and order their ideas through play and trying out language they have listened to.



Through the teaching of systematic phonics, our aim is for children to become fluent readers by the end of Key Stage One. In addition to this we ensure our children are enthusiastic and motivated readers who are inspired by literature and read for pleasure.


Throughout the teaching of Phonics, we measure the progress against the phases with the support of the phase descriptors, alien word assessments and class trackers. This is particularly crucial in Early Years so that we can see the early progression into reading.  We are able to measure attainment using the Key Stage One national assessments, along with the information provided by the Phonics Screening check in Year One.


Parents, please look under phonics in the Parent Tab to find out more about Letters and Sounds.


The Curriculum Leader for Phonics and Early Reading is Mrs Victoria Watts


She is supported by Mrs Laura Cato – English Lead