St Monica's Catholic Primary School

Phonics and Reading

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The children have daily phonics sessions using the Read, Write, Inc scheme which was written by Ruth Miskin. The children are taught to recognise each sound and then begin blending them together. They are also taught to read words on sight, for example, a word such as “the” or “said” needs to be recognised straight away and not sounded out – we call these “red words”.

When the children know all their sounds and are able to blend them, they will begin taking reading books home using the Ruth Miskin scheme. When the children are reading with some fluency, to develop their comprehension, they will also take home a colour banded book. These books come from a variety of different reading schemes such as PM Benchmark Books and are grouped into colour bands according to how difficult the books are to read. Children are heard read individually about three times each week by the teachers, nursery nurses, teaching assistants and volunteers.

The children’s reading and phonics skills are assessed continually throughout the year. In the summer, the children are assessed using the PM Benchmarking Kit as well as a phonics screener to ensure that the child is reading books at the right level.

We ask parents to read every night with their child for at least 10 minutes. It is important that this time is spent not just reading the words in the book but talking about what is happening, looking at the pictures and so on. It is also important for adults to read to their children so that the children hear a good model of reading and learn to love stories and books generally.

A literacy meeting held 19th and 20th October for parents went through the following handouts: