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Phonics

Phonics at Round Hill

What is phonics?

Phonics is a way of teaching children how to read and write. It helps children hear, identify and use different sounds that distinguish one word from another in the English language. Written language can be compared to a code, so knowing the sounds of individual letters and how those letters sound when they’re combined will help children decode words as they read. Understanding phonics will also help children know which letters to use when they are writing words. Phonics involves matching the sounds of spoken English with individual letters or groups of letters. For example, the sound k can be spelled as c, k, ck or ch. Teaching children to blend the sounds of letters together helps them decode unfamiliar or unknown words by sounding them out. 

Phonics at Round Hill

At Round Hill Primary School we strive to ensure that all children become successful and fluent readers by the end of Key Stage 1. We believe this is achievable through a combination of high quality, discrete phonics teaching combined with a literature-rich approach that promotes a ‘reading for pleasure’ culture. We aim for all of the children at Round Hill to leave school at the end of Key Stage 2 with a genuine passion for reading and to have obtained all the skills they need to tackle a new book or text.

What do we teach?

We use a fantastic government approved phonics scheme called 'Bug Club Phonics' for teaching systematic synthetic phonics. Discrete phonics lessons take place daily across Reception and Key Stage 1 and offer children a range of activities and experiences to develop their speaking and listening skills and phonological awareness. Each lesson follows the cycle of ‘Assess, Teach, Practise and Apply’ to ensure that children are consolidating phonic knowledge and skills over time and that they are able to apply them in context. As part of the programme, children are also able to explore a variety of fiction and non-fiction books that are 100% decodable and access interactive videos and activities with games and pictures.

How can you help at home?

With all books, encourage your child to ‘sound out’ unfamiliar words and then blend the sounds together from left to right rather than looking at the pictures to guess. Once your child has read an unfamiliar word you can talk about what it means and help him or her to follow the story.

Try to make time to read with your child every day and make books a part of family life. Grandparents and older brothers or sisters can help too!

Word games like ‘I-spy’ can also be an enjoyable way of teaching children about sounds and letters. You can also encourage your child to read words from your shopping list or road signs to practise phonics.