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The education White Paper ‘The Importance of Teaching’ (Nov 2010) states that

the Government i!!"
#nsure that a!! chi!dren have the chance to fo!!o an enriching curricu!um $%
getting them reading ear!%& That means supporting the teaching of s%stematic
s%nthetic phonics and introducing a simp!e reading chec' at age si( to guarantee
that chi!dren have mastered the $asic s'i!!s of ear!% reading and a!so ensure e
can identif% those ith !earning difficu!ties&
The independent revie of ear!% reading conducted $% )im *ose confirmed that
‘high +ua!it% phonic or'’ shou!d $e the prime means for teaching chi!dren to
read and spe!! ords& The revie a!so high!ighted the importance of deve!oping
from the ear!iest stages chi!dren’s spea'ing and !istening s'i!!s, ensuring that
$eginner readers are read% to get off to a good start in phonic or' $% the age of
-& (.etters and sounds notes of Guidance 200/ pg 1)
*ose identified the most effective a% of teaching phonics" 0%stematic" referring
to the fact that there is not one specific method of teaching phonics $ut that the
!etters and sounds the% re!ate to are taught in a specific se+uence as opposed to
incidenta!!% or on a ‘hen needed’ $asis&
0%nthetic" hich is a method of teaching reading hich first teaches the !etter
sounds and then $ui!ds up to $!ending these sounds together to achieve fu!!
pronunciation of ho!e ords&
Phonics is simp!% a code that turns ritten !anguage into spo'en !anguage and
vice versa& It is the vita! initia! step in teaching chi!dren to read $ut it is far from
the ho!e picture& Phonics i!! on!% or' in an environment here 0pea'ing and
.istening 0'i!!s are promoted and deve!oped&
1or !earning to read and spe!! e need much more than the a!pha$et& In the
#ng!ish spo'en !anguage around 22 phonemes can $e identified $ut there are
on!% 23 !etters in the a!pha$et& Therefore, not on!% sing!e !etters $ut a!so groups
of !etters are used to represent the 22 phonemes& 4hi!dren need to $e taught the
s'i!!s of $!ending and segmenting these phonemes and graphemes&
0o hat does this actua!!% mean to the teaching of phonics and reading at Pear
Tree 0choo!5
6t Pear Tree, e have adopted the .etters and 0ounds programme to introduce
and teach phonics hen appropriate to individua! chi!dren& 1o!!oing the .etters
and 0ounds programme, there is a $ig emphasis throughout our primar%
department on Phase 1 and 2 phonics& 1or a!! of our chi!dren the deve!opment of
spea'ing and !istening s'i!!s is centra! to their ho!e education so that the% can
access a!! other areas of their !earning and socia! !ife& Without a good !eve! of
spea'ing and !istening s'i!!s, chi!dren are not a$!e to !earn to read& (P!ease see
communication po!ic%) 6spects of Phase 1 phonics i!! $e ongoing and
em$edded throughout the schoo! da% ith more focused activities for those
chi!dren ho are read%&&
1or man% of our pupi!s the teaching of s%stematic phonics is not appropriate and
it is not possi$!e to sa% at hat age an% of our chi!dren i!! $e read% to progress
past phase 1 phonics& 7n!i'e in the .etters and 0ounds Guidance, chi!dren i!!,
on the ho!e, not $e read% to start Phase 2 phonics in their *eception 8ear $ut
ma% $e read% !ater on in their primar% education& *egu!ar ongoing assessments
of pupi!s, 6nnua! *evies and %ear!% summative 6ssessments i!! identif% those
pupi!s ho are read% to start on Phase 2 phonics and teachers i!! then p!an
either ho!e group or individua! phase 2 phonic activities appropriate to their
a$i!it% !eve!& P!anning and de!iver% of these phonic sessions i!! $e monitored $%
the !iterac% !eader& 6!though e fo!!o the se+uence of phonic content ithin the
programme e do not fo!!o the !ength of advised time as our chi!dren need
repetition and over9!earning to ac+uire phonic 'no!edge and s'i!!s& Therefore,
chi!dren i!! not progress through phase 2 phonics over a 3 ee' period $ut
rather the c!ass teacher i!! use their professiona! :udgement and assessments
to decide hen to move a chi!d on to the ne(t set of sounds&
Progression through the further 2 stages of the .etters and 0ounds programme,
if appropriate, i!! $e on an individua! $asis& Teachers i!! use their professiona!
:udgement and formative assessments to determine hether an individua! chi!d is
read% to move on to the ne(t stage and individua! targets i!! $e set&
Throughout schoo! the .e(ia 7; programme is used to support and enhance the
teaching and !earning of phonics and ear!% reading s'i!!s for those pupi!s for
hom it is appropriate&
6t Pear Tree 0choo!, e recognise the importance of teaching phonics $ut a!so
understand that man% of our chi!dren i!! not !earn to read phonica!!% $ut rather
i!! read on sight a range of ords from memor%& Throughout our primar%
department, chi!dren i!! $e encouraged to continue to deve!op their phonic
'no!edge and s'i!!s and to use these to decode ords& <oever, once pupi!s
move into our secondar% department, if the% have not grasped the necessar%
phonic 'no!edge and s'i!!s to read, then the% i!! $e supported to deve!op their
functiona! reading s'i!!s to ena$!e them to $e as independent as possi$!e in their
adu!t !ife& Whatever reading strateg% chi!dren use, reading for en:o%ment and to
gain information i!! $e encouraged&
Phonics is on!% part of the process of chi!dren !earning to read and as part of our
dai!% curricu!um, chi!dren i!! $e immersed in a !anguage rich and communication
focused environment ith $oo's and stories shared for en:o%ment at each
individua! chi!d’s !eve!& 4hi!dren i!! $e encouraged to see and read ords ithin
their environment and ithin fami!iar te(ts& 6s $oth !ong term and or'ing
memor% are crucia! for chi!dren to $ecome readers, a!! aspects of the dai!%
curricu!um throughout a!! su$:ects aims to deve!op pupi!s a$i!it% to e(p!ore and
e(perience, deve!op anticipator% s'i!!s and remem$er events and actions over
!onger periods of time, a!! of hich are pre9re+uisites to !earning to read&
To support the deve!opment and en:o%ment of reading, e provide a range of
reading schemes throughout schoo! ensuring that there are age appropriate and
interesting reading materia!s for a!! pupi!s&
The fo!!oing reading schemes are used $% our !oer schoo! department"
• =(ford *eading 0cheme
• 0ai!s
• 0tar *ig$%
• >ande!ion .aunchers
• >ande!ion *eaders
The fo!!oing reading schemes are used $% our upper schoo! department"
• >oc' 0ide
• 6!! 0tar <igh
• We!!ington 0+uare
• ?oon >og
• ?agic @e!t
• 6!$a 0eries