Early Reading at Welsh House Farm School
We teach early reading through the systematic, synthetic phonics programme Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised. At the start from Reception children have a daily phonics lesson which follows the progression for Little Wandle Letters and Sounds and this continues in Year One to ensure children become fluent readers.
We teach phonics for 30 minutes a day. In Reception, we build from 10-minute lessons, with additional daily oral blending games, to the full-length lesson as quickly as possible. Each Friday, we review the week’s teaching to help children become fluent readers.
In Reception, teaching begins in Week 2 of the Autumn term. We follow the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised expectations of progress (please see below for the progression). Four new phonemes and their corresponding graphemes are taught (GPCs) each week and they are then used in the final lesson of the week to review the week’s learning. Children will also learn tricky words during these sessions.
In the Autumn and Spring term, Reception learn phase 2 and phase 3 GPCs and then will spend the Summer term learning phase 4.
Year 1 begin the Autumn term with 3 weeks of revision of phases 2, 3 and 4 before learning phase 5, which will be completed by the end of the year. Year 2 children will begin the year by revisiting phase 5 and other previously taught phases to ensure all children are completely confident with applying these GPCs in both their reading and also their writing. Half termly assessments take place through Reception and Year 1 to help inform future teaching and help identify children who have gaps in their phonic knowledge and need additional practice. Daily assessment of learning also takes place within the classroom so staff can quickly identify any children who are in danger of falling behind and provide the appropriate daily ‘Keep Up’ intervention.
Please look at the videos below for support with the pronunciation of the phonemes taught:
Guided Reading Sessions
Children in Reception, Year 1 and 2, read fully decodable books with an adult 2 times per week during our ‘Guided Reading’ sessions. These books are then sent home for children to build their reading fluency and showcase their developing skills and phonetic knowledge to their parents/carers. The first guided reading session focusses on decoding and the second guided reading session focusses on prosody and comprehension. In Reception, Y1 and Y2 our reading books are Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised Big Cat books.
Supporting Your Child With Reading
Although your child will be taught to read at school, you can have a huge impact on their reading journey by continuing their practice at home.
There are two types of reading book that your child will bring home in Reception and Year 1:
Reading Practice Book
This book has been carefully matched to your child’s current reading level. If your child is reading it with little help, please don’t worry that it’s too easy – your child needs to develop fluency and confidence in reading.
Listen to them read the book. Remember to give them lots of praise. If they can’t read a word, ask them to decode (sound it out) and blend it. After they have finished, talk about the book together.
In order to encourage your child to become a lifelong reader, it is important that they learn to read for pleasure. The sharing book is a book they have chosen for you to enjoy together.
Please remember that you shouldn’t expect your child to read this alone. Read it to or with them. Discuss the pictures, enjoy the story, predict what might happen next, use different voices for the characters, explore the facts in a nonfiction book. In addition, after reading the book you can pick out some words and help them to expand their vocabulary by discussing alternatives for these words. The main thing is though that you have fun!
From Year 2 onwards, children will bring home a reading for pleasure book which they can read independently but can also still share with you too.