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At Fairfield we see Phonics as a gateway to learning. By providing our children with a solid Phonics knowledge, we open up the world of learning through reading, writing and understanding the English language. Using the Letters and Sounds programme, phonics lessons teach children about how letters link to sounds, how to blend sounds to read and how to segment letters to write words and sentences.

Active and fun learning is the key to high engagement in Phonics lessons so we carefully plan each phonics session to be short, snappy and fun. For EYFS and Key Stage 1 they have daily Phonics lessons that last 20-30 minutes. These lessons include a revisit of previous learning, teaching of a new sound or skill, a chance to apply that sound or skill in a fun interactive way and finally a short activity where the teacher can assess the understanding of the children. Our Phonics Bug reading scheme also ensures that Phonics learning is linked to the reading book that the children have.

Children are regularly assessed to ensure they are accessing learning at the correct level. This allows teachers to understand which sounds children require more support in and interventions are promptly put in place in order to target such areas. Subsequently, children are able to learn, practise and consolidate their phonics knowledge in order for them to become confident readers and spellers during their time at Fairfield.

Children are also assessed in Year 1 using the 'Phonics Screening Check'. This is carried out nationally and is a short assessment to confirm whether individual children have learnt phonic decoding to an appropriate standard. It will identify the children who need extra help so they are given support they need to improve their reading skills. Below is an example of the 2015 screening check and will help you to understand the assessment your child will face at the end of Year 1. Children read the words one to one with a teacher. If a child does not reach the pass threshold (typically 32) at the end of Year 1, they receive additional support in phonics and complete the check again at the end of Year 2.

  • Click here to see an example of our phonics screening checks...

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