Phonics and Spelling
In Early Years and Key Stage 1 the school uses the ‘Read, Write Inc.’ phonics scheme. This scheme helps children learn to read quickly and easily. Read Write Inc., developed by Ruth Miskin, provides a structured and systematic approach to teaching phonics.
In Year 2, the children start ‘Read, Write Inc.’ Spelling and this is continued throughout Key Stage 2. Read Write Inc. Spelling for Years 2 to 6 has been specially created to meet the higher demands of the national curriculum.
In Early Years and Key Stage 1 the school uses Oxford Reading Scheme. From Year 2, the school uses a vast selection of reading books (from a range of reading schemes), which are carefully graded by reading levels known as book bands. As a rough guide, children are expected to reach the highest level (lime) at seven or eight years old. Children who read above lime level are reading fairly fluently and although some books are still graded above this level, children are reading such a wide range of material that the banding becomes not so important.
The books will vary in a number of ways, including layout, size, vocabulary and length, to give the children a rich diet of literature. The difference between each colour band/number stage is very gradual, so that children do not experience great difficulty moving up through the scheme.
Progress through the bands is not automatic and it is important to ensure that children working in the early bands have secure understanding so that they remain in control of the task and well-motivated as they move on to more challenging texts.
A Word of Caution!
You will be doing your child no favours if you rush them through books. It is not a race, it is a journey! Children learn at different rates just as they learn to walk, dress themselves etc. at different rates. Reading must not be treated as a competition. If children are rushed through the books they will not achieve the enjoyment and understanding necessary. Books that they find too difficult will soon put them off reading!
Things to Remember
Do hear your child read every day.
Little and often is more beneficial than a long session once a week.
Think about how long you are reading for – the amount of reading time shouldn’t exceed your child’s span of attention.
Pick your timing carefully – it’s best not to embark on a reading session when your child is tired.
Every child is an individual – try not to compare your child’s progress with other children or with brothers and sisters.
“Parents can instill a love of reading long before a child goes to school and deepen that love of reading as the child grows up.”
Enjoy reading with your child and help them become lifelong readers.