Overall Intent

To ensure that our whole school approach to the teaching of Phonics enables ALL children to be readers and writers.

All children access a rigorous, well planned, phonics programme that is delivered consistently throughout the school by ALL staff. Our methods and resources are embedded within our programme ensuring that children are exposed to a consistent phonics education. This consistency enables children to build on previous learning whilst consolidating their knowledge and application skills. All staff are well trained and receive regular CPD and support from the Phonics Lead to ensure they are confident to deliver our school Phonics Programme.

At Buxton Primary School we are proud to have developed and implemented our own bespoke phonics scheme, our ‘Systematic Synthetic Phonics Programme’ developed specifically for our children. Even before our pupil’s start school we provide information to parent’s about phase one and the importance of embedding these skills and what they can do to support these skills before their child starts school.

What is in a lesson?

All phonics lessons from Reception to the end of Key Stage 1 follow the same format. All lessons are fast paced and do not exceed 25 minutes each day. They begin with a quick ‘Revise and Rehearse’ where children recap on previous learning and apply this to reading and writing. They are then taught a new grapheme or alternative grapheme in Phase 5. We then apply this new learning to reading words and sentences. We may use some Alien words within this part of the lesson. Moving on, the children can then apply this in their writing (on whiteboards or within phonics books). They have the opportunity to ‘Ask the Question’- a method developed to ensure that children can make successful attempts at spellings. The final part of the lesson can be used to consolidate previous learning for example Tricky words or common exception words. It may be used to teach Handwriting Families or for challenges and games.

How is phonics embedded in our curriculum?

Children have the opportunity to apply and develop their skills in phonics (reading, writing and spelling) many times throughout a school day. Phonics lessons happen daily within Reception and Key Stage 1. Our scheme joins together the skills needed for reading, writing and spelling and follows the same approach with the same imagery and ‘sayings’. All staff are trained in how to use and deliver our scheme and they apply this to reading and writing in all areas of the curriculum. When homework activities are given, they will link to our teaching of phonics and allow children the chance to practise these skills outside of school. Reading books are carefully monitored and given according to the child’s exact stage of development. Phonics display posters have been designed in-house specifically to be used as visual aids as class displays and as sound mats for children’s tables. These are the same in each class with images matching and linking with our handwriting approach. As staff, we strive to instil a love of reading and show this ourselves during shared story times with our classes and by allowing children to have autonomy over choosing their own library books for home and by allowing them access to reading books during lunchtime break.