Phonics and Reading


What is Phonics?

Phonics teaches children how to decode letters into their respective sounds. Teaching children to blend sounds together helps them to decode words by themselves. For example when a child is taught the sounds for 'a' and 't', they can start to read the word 'at'.

Effective phonic lessons are important because letter-sound knowledge is the foundation needed to build up reading and writing abilities. We use Unlocking Letters and Sounds programme to deliver our phonic sessions.



Reading requires skills such as a good understanding of vocabulary, the ability to extract inferences, and to synthesise and hold information across several sentences. But if your single word reading is not efficient, comprehension is going to be dramatically affected.

If we use building a house as an analogy, understanding text is the complete home; single word reading ability is the structural frame of the house, and phonics is the foundation of that frame.


Early Years and Key Stage One

In Nursery, Reception and Key Stage One,  Phonics is taught through daily lessons using the Unlocking Letters and Sounds Programme. Children who are not at the expected level for phonics receive interventions each day. Phonics trackers are used regularly to assess the children.

Here are the links to the phonic stages linked to each year group up to KS 1

Year 1      
Year 2          


See more about Phonics - Unlocking Letters and Sounds by clicking here


Key Stage Two

In addition, children in Key Stage Two have access to Phonics interventions where necessary again using the Unlocking Letters and Sounds programme.


Reading Scheme

The children progress as individual readers through the school reading scheme, which is mainly made up of Ransom Reading Star Phonics and Oxford Reading Tree books. When children are starting to read their reading books are phonetically decodable and link to the phonic stage they are working on.


Guided Reading

The guided reading schemes used throughout our school include Ransom Reading Star Phonics, Rigby Star and Reading Explorers.


Wider Reading

In addition to the reading offering provided by school, children are encouraged from an early age to read books outside the scheme for example class readers, books from the school library, books from Oldham libraries, books from home and books on particular topics.


Phonics – Additional Resources


Also here are some useful websites to help with phonics.

Fine Motor Skills Shonette Bason

There are lots of helpful games and songs on the internet.