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St Paul's Cof E Primary School

We Can Do All This Through Him Who Gives Us Strength


At St Paul's, we strive to ensure that all children become successful, fluent readers, equipped with excellent comprehension skills and a love of reading.

Reading is a key life-skill and we are dedicated to enabling our pupils to become life-long readers. This essential skill begins with phonics which teaches our children to read, write and spell. Through high-quality phonics teaching, our pupils are systematically taught using Supersonic Phonic Friends, a DfE validated programme. 

Pupils receive daily phonics lessons throughout the Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 which follows a clear, precise structure of revisit, teach, practise and apply. Pupils are taught each phoneme (singular sound in a word), how to blend the sound in order to read, and how to segment each sound in order to write. They are taught to use their phonic skills and knowledge as their first approach to reading, but are also taught high frequency words which do not completely follow the phonic rules. All children are closely monitored and regularly assessed in order to make progress, as well as identify any gaps in their learning so that these can be targeted with additional support.


Daily phonics lessons are taught systematically using the Supersonic Phonic Friends DfE accredited programme which is accessed by all children in the classroom. These lessons provide children secure phonic knowledge, understanding and skills so that they can decode words confidently and apply this when reading and writing. Pupils are also taught to recognise and use strategies to decode tricky words. These essential skills will give children the confidence to apply their phonic knowledge across the curriculum and build a lifelong love of reading and writing.   


Here at St Paul’s, we are dedicated to enabling our children to become confident readers with a passion for reading. To ensure this, children are given the best start on their reading journey by taking part in structured phonic lessons each day throughout the Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1. Each lesson is led by staff who are trained in delivering high-quality phonics teaching that rigorously follows the phonic progression set out in the Supersonic Phonic Friends scheme. Each lesson begins with a revisit and review section, so that children can refresh and consolidate their prior learning before moving on to the new learning for that lesson. Pupils are clearly modelled to and given the opportunity to practise their new skills. Once pupils are confident to move on, they are able to apply their knowledge in a variety of ways. Phonic lessons are fun and filled with memorable phrases to keep them interactive and engage all learners.

Assessment in phonics in ongoing and takes place during the lessons through regular monitoring and feedback. Focussed support takes place during lessons in smaller groups for children that need additional support. Formal assessments of phonic knowledge also take place each term which allows teachers to identify any gaps in learning. This information is used to plan interventions to help these children meet the expected level of understanding. 

At the end of Year 1, children will undertake a statutory phonics screening check. This is a short assessment to make sure that children have learnt phonics to an appropriate standard. The check is made up of 'real words' (eg. 'mud') and 'nonsense-words' (eg. 'splog') and children need to apply their phonic knowledge to decode all words. Our children do well in the phonics screening check and we know what it takes to make reading and writing pleasurable and rewarding for our children.

Children are listened to reading at least once a week with an adult where they apply their phonic knowledge using fully decodable books. These books match their phonic level so that they can segment and blend to read independently, with support where needed.

Each week, children receive homework based on the new sounds and tricky words they have been learning. This provides children a further opportunity to practise and apply these skills at home, as well as providing parents with the information needed to further support their child. Children are provided with fully decodable books each week to take home and read to an adult. Through the use of reading records, regular communication is encouraged between home and school to provide children with the full support needed on their reading journey.


Pupils at St Paul's are taught to use their phonics as their primary approach to reading and develop as confident, fluent readers by the end of Key Stage 1. We believe that reading is a key life skill and the impact of our reading curriculum goes beyond our pupil's primary education.


Attainment in reading is measured using ongoing teacher assessment and the statutory assessments in Key Stage 1 and 2. These results are above the national average and we continually strive for excellence in our approach to teaching and learning in literacy. All children are well supported and interventions specifically target any gaps in knowledge so that pupils have a solid foundation in their early reading. In addition to developing reading skills, following a systematic programme enables children to make phonically plausible attempts at spelling words and therefore communicate their ideas in writing across a range of subjects.

Children have access to a range of texts and by taking home fully decodable books, they can celebrate their reading success and grow in confidence. This motivates children to read regularly and, in turn, supports their progress and fosters a love of reading.



Supersonic Phonics 

 Helpful Videos of our DfE Phonics Scheme in Action!



Supersonic Phonic Friends... a sneak peak...