What is Phonics?
Phonics is a strategy for reading that helps children to learn to read quickly and skilfully. During these lessons children are taught to recognise the sounds that each letter of the alphabet makes and to identify sounds made by different combinations of letters. Children then apply this knowledge to help them decode words in a sentence. For example children learn the sounds, not letter names, of the following letters a….n….t. They then learn how to blend these sounds to form the word “ant‟. Each of the sounds that the children learn are called phonemes and there are 44 altogether.
If you would like to find out more about the 44 phonemes you can visit the website Phonics Play ; you will also find a number of free games on this website that may be suitable for your child to play at home.
Phonics at Richard Atkins
At Richard Atkins we use a government resource for teaching phonics called Letters and Sounds. Letter and Sounds sets out a detailed and systematic programme for teaching phonic skills to children with the aim of them becoming fluent readers by age seven.
The programme is divided into 6 phases of learning, teaching sounds in a certain order:
- Phases 1 to 3 are taught throughout the Early Years, Phases 4 and 5 throughout Year 1 and Phase 6 throughout Year 2.
- Lessons are divided into smaller sections consisting of revision, new learning and application of new learning.
Phonics in EYFS
Phonics lessons are taught every day for 40 minutes. These lessons consist of a short, fast paced carpet session where all children will revisit previous learning and participate in a new learning. All children will then take part in phonics games and activities to consolidate their learning. Phonics strategies are also referred to throughout the school day in incidental learning opportunities.
Phonics in Year 1
Stand-alone phonics lessons are taught for 30 minutes every day. The knowledge and strategies learned in these sessions are revisited regularly throughout the school day during reading and writing activities.
Phonics in Year 2
Stand-alone phonics lessons are taught for 20 minutes every day. The knowledge and strategies learned in these sessions are revisited regularly throughout the school day during reading and writing activities.