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Upham Church of England Aided Primary School

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Learning to Read and Phonics

What Reading Scheme do we use?

Our main reading scheme which we used as part of teaching our youngest children to read is Pearsons 'Bug-Club' reading materials. These books are visually stimulating and relevant to children's experiences and interests - the Lego books are always particularly popular. There are many varied titles and genres of books so that children can explore reading poetry, fiction and information texts. The books also come with pointers for parents so that new vocabulary can be pre-taught, helping children to tackle new words when they meet them and discussion questions are also suggested. 


Children can bring home a new book everyday or hold onto one for a while - this all depends on their interest levels, the length of the book and how much time can be devoted to reading together.


The books are also available on-line to parents and logins are set up and shared with families at the beginning of the year. The on-line platform features electronic copies of the 'actual' books in school as well as some extra comprehension and word-attack games which children will enjoy playing whilst practicing their language skills.


In addition the 'Bug-Club' books, we have other resources to add diversity and range to what children read, particularly for those enthusiastic readers who love reading as much as possible. We supplement this scheme with books from other publishers - The Biff and Chip books being particularly popular with our youngest children.

What Phonics Scheme do we use?

Phonics skills are actively taught daily throughout Year R, 1 and 2. We use the 'Letters and Sounds' materials to develop understanding and secure rapid progress. Children learn together through practice and application, initially learning to discriminate between different sounds (phonemes to be technical) and then increasingly being able to decide which letter combination to use to represent the sound, given the word and the position of the sound. 


In Year 1 in the summer term, children are required by the DfE to undertake a phonics screening test. This is completed 1-to-1 with their teacher and is a familiar activity for the children. If children were not to meet the required standard they would be required to re-take in Class 2 (statutory process from DfE).