If children are to develop as competent, fluent readers it is essential that they have secure understanding of letters and sounds. Phonic skills are essential to developing competent and assertive readers. At Froxfield, the DfE recommended Letters and Sounds programme forms the basis of our phonics teaching. From Reception, children will learn all the 44 sounds and their corresponding graphemes. They will be explicitly taught the skill of oral blending, which is vital for the initial stages of early reading. Children will rapidly progress to blending sounds together to help them read CVC words and will continue to learn digraph and trigraph sounds throughout Early Years and Key Stage 1. As children become confident at blending sounds, they are taught the skill of blending sounds mentally and at speed. This consistent and rigorous approach will provide our children with the foundations to become enthused readers with a passion for storytelling, literature and vocabulary.
We aim to foster a lifelong love of reading by exposing our children to high quality fiction and non-fiction texts across the curriculum. We believe reading opens up a new world for children and gives them the opportunity to explore new ideas, visit new places, meet new characters and develop a better understanding of other cultures. Through building up the children’s vocabulary it gives them the word power they need to become successful speakers and writers as well as confident readers. Reading is a key life skill and we strive to embed a reading culture, providing opportunities for children to read both independently, in groups and aloud. We also encourage children to respond to what they have read through their reading journal. Reading is implicitly interwoven into our English curriculum through the use of high-quality texts, exposing our children to a range of genres and authors.
Competent writers must have the necessary secretarial skills as well as the vocabulary, understanding of language and experience around which to experiment with the written word. Writing is taught through the use of quality text drivers, which create a purpose for writing and the skills of spelling, handwriting and grammar and punctuation are taught discretely and children then apply their skills through motivating and creative writing tasks covering a wide range of genres. Writing tasks are generally linked to cross curricular topics and texts to ensure pupils can apply their skills in a range of contexts.
Handwriting is taught from Reception using a pre-cursive style, and children begin joining letters from Year 1. Pupils have regular opportunities to practise handwriting skills throughout the week to develop a clear, fluent style.
English Lead: Mrs Farrow