Funded 2, 3 & 4 year old nursery places now available!

Reading and Phonics @SLE


At Shortlanesend School we believe that reading is a key tool for life. We are passionate about teaching our children to become natural, enthusiastic and fluent readers. All children have access to a wide range of inspiring and high-quality texts to develop learning in all curriculum areas. A reading rich environment is at our very core, an environment in which books are valued and promoted throughout the school. Which along with daily, weekly, termly and special activities ensure that children not only enjoy learning to read but are encouraged to flourish - mirroring our ethos of:

 Smile - Learn - Excel

Children are heard to read individually and in groups regularly. All children experience a wide range of books through story times and VIPERS reading sessions. Our children enjoy using Accelerated Reader to match their reading fluency with their comprehension. We encourage our children to read both in school and at home. Please see the list of prompts to support reading at home below and the year group posters of recommended reads. 

 Our high-quality phonic teaching supports our children to secure the key skills of word recognition, which once mastered allow children to decode systematically and to read fluently. As their reading continues to become more confident and fluent children become more able to focus on their comprehending of the text. This balance between recognising words and comprehending language alters as children become secure in their decoding skills  - They move form learning to read to reading to learn for both pleasure and purpose.
  • Ensure all children develop confident early reading skills through the provision of high calibre, consistent and regular phonics sessions
  • Personalise phonics learning to the specific needs of individual children as necessary to ensure progress
  • Ensure the teaching and learning of phonics is progressive and systematic throughout EYFS and Key Stage 1
  • Develop phonic skills as children progress onto further areas of reading application and spelling as stated in the National Curriculum for Key Stage 1 and 2
  • For children to enjoy their learning whilst securing the skills needed to develop their fluency in reading and move to gaining a fuller comprehension of text

How our children learn phonics

At Shortlanesend School we use a synthetic phonics programme to teach reading called 'Read Write Inc' produced by Ruth Miskin. As children progress and can decode fluently they move onto the Literacy and Language scheme which develops children’s comprehension, vocabulary, writing, critical thinking and discussion skills and grammar – in a fun and meaningful way.

Read Write Inc Phonics is a method of teaching reading which is centred around learning the sounds of the letters (phonics), and then blending them together to read words.  The children also learn to break down words into individual sounds in order to write them.

How it works

The children are assessed and grouped according to their ability.

They work in small groups with a teacher and a teaching assistant.

At the end of each half term the children will be assessed again to check they have made progress and will be grouped again.  In addition to the Read Write Inc programme the children will also be working on writing skills and storytelling in their classes with their own class teacher.


Using Read Write Inc the children learn to read effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into understanding what they read.

When using 'Read Write Inc' to read the children will:

Learn 44 sounds and the corresponding letter/letter groups using simple picture prompts

Learn to read words by blending the sounds together

Read lively stories featuring words they have learnt to sound out

Show that they understand the stories by answering 'Find It' and 'Prove it' discussion questions.


Read Write Inc allows the children to spell effortlessly so that they can put their energy into working out what they want to write.

When using 'Read Write Inc' to write the children will:

Learn to write the letters/letter groups which represent the 44 sounds (graphemes)

Learn to write words by sounding them out and then writing the corresponding graphemes

Learn to write simple and then increasingly complex sentences

Compose a range of texts using discussion prompts

Compose stories based on picture strips. 


When using 'Read Write Inc' the children work in pairs to:

Answer questions to practise every activity

Take turns talking to each other

Give positive praise to each other.


Children learn to read words by blending the letter-sounds that are in the Speed Sound sets 
(shown further down the page).

Help your child learn to read words by sound-blending e.g. c-a-t = cat

Help children to say the pure sounds, as quickly as they can, and then to blend the sounds together to say the whole word.

 Set 1 sounds

 Set 2 sounds

Set 3 sounds

How will I know how to pronounce the phonic sounds?

Visit the parents page at:

Parent guide to Read Write Inc. Phonics | Oxford Owl


What else can I do to help my child read?

Read a variety of books (fiction, non-fiction, rhymes etc). 

Discuss the different features of various books. 

Talk about the books and other reading materials that you have shared.

Explain the meaning of new words. 

Most importantly though, show the fun that can be gained by listening to stories and reading a range of texts.e.g. reading and then following a recipe together

Don't forget you don't have to read just books, cereal packets, shopping lists, road signs, web pages, magazines, newspapers etc are useful ways to practise reading.

Reading at Shortlanesend
How we prioritise reading
* Each of our classrooms has a a reading area with books chosen to match the children's interests and current topics. There are a range of books in each class, including fiction, non-fiction and poetry books.
* To encourage reading at home the chidren are rewarded with reading prizes and certificates.
*Read Write Inc is followed in EYFS and KS1. The children have daily sessions and take home the matching book bag reading books. 
Promoting a love of reading
*Teachers read class stories to promote a love and enjoyment of books. 
* Poems are shared and enjoyed.
*The children are exposed to a wide variety of texts.
* We celebrate World Book Day every March.
*KS1 children have a weekly story assembly where a quality text is read and enjoyed.
*The children all have access to the school library and are encouraged to choose books for enjoyment.
* Each class has a termly Storytime session where parents are invited to come in and read with heir child at school.
Making progress in reading
* RWI Phonics is taught daily and the children are assessed every half term to inform future planning and intervention.
*Target children are given 1:1 intervention.
* Reading skills are taught through VIPERS. 
Vocabulary   Inference    Predicting   Explaining   Retrieval  Sequencing (KS1)    Summarising  (KS2)
* Parent meetings are held to share how we teach Phonics and Reading.
* Once the children have completed the RWI Phonics Scheme they move onto the Accelerated Reader Scheme.
* Each teacher will identify children who need additional time spent reading in school and these are our priority readers.
* Star Reading Assessments and the Headstart Reading Assessments are used to track progress and identify any children needing intervention.
Matching pupils' books to their phonic ability
* Pupils are assessed half termly using RWI assessments. The assessments then inform which group the children will be in.
 * RWI Book Bag books are given out to match the book being read in school and the children's phonetic ability.
* The RWI teachers are responsible for changing the RWI reading books every three days. 
* Children in KS2 that are following the RWI Phonics Scheme have a Book Bag reading book.
Supporting pupils to keep up
* Teachers identify target readers and all staff are aware of who the priority children are in their class. 
* RWI Interventions take place across the school, including 1:1 phonic sessions and RWI Freshstart in KS2.
*Children who do not achieve the phonics check receive interventions. 
* Reading is discussed with parents when their is a concern and advice given for how they can support their child at home.
* Reading Comprehension interventions take place with targeted children who need additional help with reading skills.
How we train staff to be reading experts
* All members of staff are trained in RWI Phonics and have access to the RWI portal.
* All staff have received training on teaching vocabulary.
* The RWI lead monitors and offers guidance to the RWI teachers.

Shortlanesend School
School website design by eSchools. Content provided by Shortlanesend School. All rights reserved. 2024