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St. Peter's Church of England Primary School

Hand in Hand we journey together, guided by God

Phonics & Spelling

At St. Peter’s we believe that phonics and spelling are both an integral part of the reading and writing process.

Children who are confident with phonics and spell with ease are able to communicate clearly and effectively, thus having greater opportunity to enjoy reading and concentrate on the development of their writing.  

Our approach begins with the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised, our chosen Systematics Synthetic Phonics (SSP) programme.  Phonics is making connection between the sounds of our spoken words and letters that are used to write them down.  It is taught daily in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 following a clear teaching order.  In the initial stages of the programme, four new phonemes are introduced each week with a review lesson on a Friday.  Parents and carers are provided with a list of the sounds that are being learnt to help with formation and pronunciation.  Gradually children learn the entire alphabetic code until they are able to read fluently.  To find out more about the teaching of reading, click here.  

There are specific resources for the Little Wandle Programme which the children will become very familiar with.  To begin with, each sound that is taught has either a mnemonic or a phrase like boing-boing for ‘oi’. This helps the children recognise and remember the graphemes.  Every time a new sound is taught, words are also introduced during the phonics lesson that contain the new sound, so that the children practise what they have learned.  the lesson continues with the children reading a sentence containing some of these words. Displays in the classroom and on tables support the children throughout the day. 

As pupils develop confidence using their phonics to read and write, they begin to experience a progressive spelling programme whilst they move through the school.  Vocabulary is matched to the National Curriculum and topics of study.  Practical activities embed grammatical understanding and spelling skills in a fun and engaging environment.

To help support children to spell confidently, in Year 2 we start to build the alphabetic code with the Little Wandle Spelling programme which provides a seamless link from the core Little Wandle Letters and Sounds programme.  The relationship between sounds and the written symbols, as well as using morphology to help spell through meaning, is developed in Key Stage 2 using Spelling Shed

It is really important that all adults pronounce the sounds correctly when supporting a child in phonics and reading.  The Little Wandle Letters and Sounds website is full of information including a 'for parents' section containing videos demonstrating how to pronounce some of the sounds.  If in doubt, please speak to your child’s class teacher.