Our primary method for teaching reading at Shinewater is through phonics using the Letters and Sounds programme of study.

Phonics teaches children to read by linking sounds (phonemes) to the symbols that represent them (graphemes)

These are the sounds (phonemes) in the English language:

Children in the nursery class start learning phonics by listening and identifying sounds in words. Hearing, and joining in with a nursery rhyme is a great start to phonemic awareness.

Children learn to separate out (‘segment’) the sounds that they can hear within words.

(e.g. When I hear the word ‘ship’ I can hear three sounds: ‘sh’, ‘i’ and ‘p’).

Children put together (blend) the sounds that they can hear to make words.

(e.g. When I hear the sounds ‘sh’, ‘i’ and ‘p’, I can blend them to make the word ‘ship’).

As children move through Reception and Key Stage 1 they link their blending and segmenting skills to the letters and groups of letters on the page. Now they are reading and spelling!

At the end of Year 1 all children in the country are screened to assess their ability in reading using phonics. Parents are then informed of the results.

A few children (particularly those who are at risk of dyslexia) have weak phonemic understanding and take longer to learn and use sounds. At Shinewater we closely monitor all children and put in additional teaching either individually and/or in small groups to support their understanding of phonics.

Supporting Your Child at Home Online

Watch this video to view and hear the 44 phonemes being correctly spoken:

Don’t forget to use ‘Teach Your Monster to Read’ which is free to access on computers. The following are also very useful for games to support Letters and Sounds:

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