At Rushey Green, we strive to ensure that all children become successful, fluent readers by the end of key stage one and believe this is achievable through a combination of strong, high quality, discrete phonics teaching combined with a whole language approach that promotes a ‘Reading for Pleasure’ culture.

We follow the Letters and Sounds document’s principles and practice across foundation stage and key stage one.  Throughout the programme children are given opportunities to review, practise and apply what they have learned through writing and reading practise.

The programme has 6 distinct phases:

Phase 1 (Nursery and Reception)

This develops listening skills and awareness of sounds within the environment.  Through this vocabulary is developed as the children learn to distinguish and talk about the differences between sounds they hear.  Throughout this stage children encouraged to listen to:

  • Environmental sounds
  • Instrumental sounds
  • Body percussion
  • Rhythm and rhyme
  • Alliteration
  • Voice sounds
  • Oral blending and segmenting

Phase 2 (Nursery and Reception)

In phase two children learn 19 letters of the alphabet and its corresponding sound.  They learn to blend and segment sounds.  During this stage the begin to make and read simple words and sentences.

Phase 3 (Reception)

During this phase they learn the remaining letters of the alphabet and the corresponding sound.  They also learn sounds that are represented by two or more letters.  They continue to read and write sentences using letters learned and practice reading high frequency words.

Phase 4 (Reception and Key Stage 1)

In this phase they consolidate knowledge of sounds learned so far.  They begin to read longer more challenging words and begin to read ‘tricky’ (words that cannot be segmented for reading) eg ‘said’, ‘come’, ‘when’.

Phase 5 (Year 1)

During this phase children learn alternatives spellings of sounds they already know eg ‘ay’ as in day and ‘ai’ as in rain and a new set of sounds made up of two or three letters.  They also learn spelling rules for sounds learned.  They begin to read longer words made up of two or three syllables.

Phase 6 (Year 1 and Year 2)

In this phase they learn more complex rules of spelling for example the use of suffixes, prefixes, doubling letter or dropping letters off to add ‘ing’.  The learn about using words in the past tense as well as long and short vowel sounds.  Throughout this they continue to learn to read, practice and apply their knowledge.

Letters and Sounds

For additional information and support we recommend that you visit the Letters and Sounds website.