Phonics and Reading in EYFS and KS1

In Reception and Key Stage 1, since September 2019, we have been teaching phonics using Read Write Inc.

Read Write Inc. Phonics and Reading  programme

Learning to read is one of the most important things your child will learn at our school. Everything else depends on it, so we aim to ensure that every single child learns to read as quickly as possible.  We want your child to love reading – and to want to read for themselves and to read for pleasure. We want to develop a love of books as well as simply learning to read.

Read Write Inc is a tried and tested, highly successful, phonics programme for children aged 4 to 7 who are learning to read and write. It teaches children how to both decode and understand written language and to become confident and enthusiastic readers and writers. 

Children are grouped according to their ability to ensure that teaching is suited to their level. Read Write Inc. phonics sessions take place daily in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2.

How will my child be taught to read?

We start by teaching the Set 1 Sounds to the children in the Reception class. This means that they learn how to ‘read’ the sounds (phonemes) in words and how those sounds can be written down (graphemes). This is essential for reading, but it also helps children learn to spell confidently.

We teach the children simple ways of remembering these sounds and letters. The children also practise reading (and spelling) what we call ‘tricky words’, such as ‘once,’ ‘have,’ ‘said’ and ‘where’. The children practise their reading with books that match the phonics and the ‘tricky words’ they know. They start thinking that they can read and this does wonders for their confidence. The teachers read to the children daily so that the children become familiar with all types of stories, poetry and information books. They learn many more words this way and it also helps them with their writing.

Read Write Inc. has 5 underlying principles – the five Ps:

1. PACE – no time is wasted during teaching sessions! Children are active and involved in a fun and creative way. The aim is for the children to complete the programme as quickly as possible.
2. PRAISE – teachers praise the children constantly throughout the teaching sessions. Children learn more quickly when they are praised for what they do well, rather than nagged for what they do wrong. The children are encouraged to praise each other and as a school we have developed several ‘Praise Phrases’ and ‘Praise actions’. Ask your child to demonstrate!
3. PURPOSE – each activity has a very clear purpose. The teacher will set this purpose at the beginning of the lesson so that the children know exactly what they will be learning.
4. PARTICIPATION – all children take part in all parts of the lesson. Full participation is gained through partner work and choral response.
5. PASSION – as a staff we are passionate about our teaching and the benefits of the Read, Write Inc. programme! We love teaching the sessions and this enthusiasm rubs off onto the children.


At Alsager Highfields we start reading by sharing quality picture books together. As the child becomes confident with their phonic sounds, they start to bring home and read Sound Blending books and then decodable Book Bag books. When ready, they will move through the book levels, with each child working through the levels at their own pace, guided and assessed individually by their Read Write Inc. regular assessments alongside the knowledge of their class teacher. 

Alongside the Read Write Inc. books, we use a range of high quality 'real books', which provide a progressive structure for reading books in Reception, Key Stage One and Key Stage Two.

Once your child has confidently read the Read Write Inc. levelled books, they will then move on to reading Accelerated Reader banded texts.


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