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Phonics

Phonics are the sounds that letters make and learning them helps children to decode words and begin to read and write. We teach children to read using synthetic phonics through the  'Letters and Sounds' programme. ‘Letters and Sounds' is organised in phases that build the complexity of the phoneme (smallest unit of sound) and graphemes (the letters used to write the sounds) taught.

 

We use a rich variety of resources to support this programme, including Jolly Phonics, Phonics Play and phonically decodadable reading books all of which which enable us to adapt learning styles to meet the needs of the children in each class and group. 

 

Children in Reception class learn phonics every day as a whole class, with individual teaching as support throughout the week. Year 1 and 2 children learn phonics every day and are grouped by their ability and stage of learning across three phonics groups. 

 

All children who do not meet the required standard in the Phonics Screening Check at the end of Year 1 have additional support through targeted interventions in Year 2, 3 and 4 as required. Further assessments may be required for children who have not met the standard by the end of Year 2. 

Whole Class Reading

 

At Radford Semele CE Primary School, Reading VIPERS is used to support children with their reading comprehension skills. VIPERS includes a range of reading prompts based on the 2016 reading Content Domain Areas (CDAs) found in the National Curriculum Test Framework.

Each classroom will have the Reading VIPERS displayed in the reading area of their classroom and the class teacher will make explicit links to the skill the children will be learning about. This gives all children across the school a common language to discuss their reading knowledge and understanding.

(Key stage 1      S = Sequence)

 

Whole Class Reading Lesson Structure

 

Whole class reading sessions will provide children with the opportunity to access a wide range of literary genres. A three week rolling programme will be followed throughout the school:

  • Week 1 – fiction

  • Week 2 – non-fiction

  • Week 3 – poetry/picture/film 

Texts will be specifically chosen to develop childrens’ knowledge within Theme, Science or RE.   

 

Teachers carefully select up to 5 key vocabulary words they want the children to learn that week. These will be taught, over-learnt and embedded throughout the rest of the week during VIPER sessions and across the wider school day to allow for children to use these words in different contexts. Where appropriate, they are applied during English and Theme sessions.

 

Children read during these sessions in a variety of different ways. They may hear the teacher model fluent reading and then have time to reread the same extract themselves, they may read individually and feedback, work in groups, take turns in pairs or read aloud to the their peers. A number of these different strategies may be used during one session.

 

Years 1 through to 4 will spend 2 days working on fluency and the remaining 3 days focusing on VIPERS skills. Years 5 and 6 will spend 1 day focusing of fluency and the remaining 4 days developing VIPERS skills. Teachers plan up to 3 key questions each session based on the content domain being focused on, making use of the VIPERS question stems.

Children are encouraged to orally speak the answer before writing anything down acknowledging their first answer may not always be their best. We use a maximum of 3 question each session to ensure children have time to provide quality answers (at times children are given sentence stems and vocabulary that is expected to be used within their answer).

 

Whole Class Reading Timetable (Years 1-4)

 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Introduce 5 vocabulary words and definitions.

 

Teacher to read through text, modelling the reading thought process.

 

Teacher to ask quick fire retrieval questions

Recap vocabulary

 

Text to be read out loud again using a number of strategies – individual children to read aloud, choral reading, echo reading, independent reading.

 

Teacher to ask children to summarise/

sequence the text

Recap vocabulary

 

Retrieval/

Explain

Teacher to model answer a question, modelling their thought process to the class.

 

Children to answer up to 3 questions.

Recap vocabulary

 

Inference

Teacher to model answer a question, modelling their thought process to the class.

 

Children to answer up to 3 questions.

Recap vocabulary (has anyone been able to apply them to their theme/English work?)

 

Summarise/

Sequence

Predict

Teacher to model answer a question, modelling their thought process to the class.

 

Children to answer up to 3 questions.

 

Whole Class reading timetable (Years 5 and 6)

 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Introduce 5 vocabulary words and definitions.

 

Teacher to read through text, modelling the reading thought process.

 

Text to be read out loud again using a number of strategies – individual children to read aloud, choral reading, echo reading, independent reading.

 

Teacher to ask quick fire retrieval questions

Recap vocabulary

 

 

Retrieval/

Explain

Teacher to model answer a question, modelling their thought process to the class.

 

Children to answer up to 3 questions.

Recap vocabulary

 

 

Inference

Teacher to model answer a question, modelling their thought process to the class.

 

Children to answer up to 3 questions.

Recap vocabulary

 

 

Inference

Teacher to model answer a question, modelling their thought process to the class.

 

Children to answer up to 3 questions.

Recap vocabulary (has anyone been able to apply them to their theme/English work?)

 

Summarise/

Sequence

Predict

Teacher to model answer a question, modelling their thought process to the class.

 

Children to answer up to 3 questions.

 

Recording and Assessment during VIPERS sessions

 

A number of strategies can be used when considering recording work. Children can:

  • discuss the answer first with peers (mixed ability pairing) and/or an adult and then writing their best answer

  • work individually and then editing their answer accordingly after discussion

  • orally discuss 1 or 2 of the questions and writing down the others working individually

 

During the reading sessions, teachers focus on specific children. This may mean hearing them read individually whilst others are reading independently, in pairs or groups, discussing answers with those children and working one to one or within a group with them during a session whilst the others form an answer independently. Teachers can then assess these children based on NC expectations and how they are performing relating to the specific content domain.

 

Teachers will be assessing constantly by circulating and reading work over the shoulders of children and giving live feedback.They also do this by collecting answers and discussing reading with the children. 

1:1 reading is essential for those children who are learning decoding skills however this should occur outside of these sessions. Whole class reading sessions are about building understanding and comprehension. For those children who are unable to decode, texts can be read to them or pre-taught.

 

 

 

Radford Semele C of E Primary School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people. We expect all staff, volunteers and parents to share this commitment.
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