Phonics and Early Reading

We use the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised programme to deliver daily discrete phonics lessons in the Early Years Foundation Stage (Nursery and Reception) and Key Stage 1 (Years 1 and 2), enabling children to decode words efficiently. This is continued into Key Stage 2 (Years 3–6) where necessary, with children joining the relevant phase phonics lessons.

Teachers model reading strategies during guided reading sessions — this gives the children the opportunity to develop reading strategies and to discuss texts whilst being supported. In Key Stage 1, children also have the opportunity to read one-to-one with an adult at least once a week. As the children move through the school, they are given more opportunities to read independently for a sustained period of time.

We use a range of reading schemes to support early readers as well as book banded ‘real books’ used for guided reading. Our teaching assistants support reading activities to ensure that children have more frequent opportunities to read with adults. Again, this is under review and a new book scheme will be introduced in January 2022.

We organise exciting and rewarding activities in school to promote the pleasure and knowledge that can be gained from books, such as ‘Book Weeks’. Book Weeks include visits by published authors, skilled storytellers from many cultures, performances by professional theatre groups, making books, and using drama, dance and music to illustrate texts.  In addition, we have library visits to the local library and book assemblies.

Reading Mission Statement

Here are some important documents that explain the reading systems we use at Hilltop:

Reading Spines

Further Useful Reading Documentation