St Cyprians Greek Orthodox Primary Academy – Phonics Curriculum Intent
At St. Cyprian’s Greek Orthodox Primary Academy, we use Read, Write, Inc. an inclusive synthetic phonic programme to teach our children to read, to write and to spell from EYFS to KS1. We want all pupils to begin their journey to reading with confidence, develop a love of reading and apply their skills competently to writing.
The overarching objectives of the RWI programme are to teach pupils to:
- apply the skill of blending phonemes in order to read words.
- segment words into their constituent phonemes in order to spell words.
- learn that blending and segmenting words are reversible processes.
- read high frequency words that do not conform to regular phonic patterns.
- read texts and words that are within their phonic capabilities as early as possible.
- decode texts effortlessly so that their focus can be used on reading to learn (comprehension)
- spell effortlessly so that their focus can be directed towards the composition of their writing
The core principles of the programme are;
- Praise– Pupils learn quickly in a positive climate.
- Pace– Good pace is essential to the lesson.
- Purpose– Every part of the lesson has a specific purpose.
- Passion–It is the energy, enthusiasm and passion that teachers invest into lessons that bring the teaching and learning to life!
- Participation- A strong feature of R.W.I. lessons is partner work; partners ‘teaching’ each other (based on research which states that we learn 70% of what we talk about with our partner and 90% of what we teach).
We have adopted this as our whole school approach as the programme facilitates a graduated and tailored approach to learning basic sounds and letter formation before advancing to more complex sounds and reading for comprehension.
These R.W.I sessions occur each day as the continuity and pace of the programme is key to accelerating the progress of children’s reading development. This method of phonics teaching is both systematic and repetitive in order to embed learning. The children work in small groups according to their confidence and competence. These groups are assessed on a regular basis in order to match the pace and the progress of each child; this also allows Class Teachers to identify where 1:1 intervention may be required in order to meet the expectations of both the Phonics Check and the end of Key Stage 1.
Through the teaching of phonics, our aim is for children to become fluent readers by the end of Key Stage 1. With decoding taught as the prime approach to reading, pupils will become familiar with this strategy and have the confidence to work out unfamiliar words in any new texts they encounter even when they have come to the end of the RWI programme. Pupils will have the opportunity to develop their fluency and comprehension as they move through the school; accessing a range of texts independently.
Attainment in reading is measured using statutory assessments such as the end of EYFS, Key Stage 1 and 2 and following the outcomes in the Year 1 Phonics Screening check. Additionally, we track our own reading attainment through the use of RWI half termly and screening assessments plus ongoing teacher assessment.
More importantly, we believe that reading is the key to unlock all learning and so the impact of our reading goes beyond the statutory assessments. We give all the children the opportunity to share texts from a range of cultures or genres to inspire them. When they leave St. Cyprian’s, we want pupils to possess the reading skills and love of literature which will help them to enjoy learning they encounter in the future.