Ark Globe Primary’s vision is to ensure that every child learns how to read and experiences the joy of reading.

If students are not able to read to an age-appropriate level and fluency, they will be incapable of accessing the rest of the curriculum and will rapidly fall behind their peers. In our school, early reading is prioritised to ensure that all our students can access the full curriculum offer.

We follow the Read Write Inc. programme for teaching phonics. This rigorous and sequential approach to early reading develops students’ fluency, confidence and enjoyment in reading. At all stages, reading attainment is assessed and gaps are addressed quickly and effectively for all students. Reading books connect closely to the phonics knowledge students are taught when they are learning to read. All students read at an age-appropriate level and develop fluency.

The sharp focus on ensuring that younger children gain phonics knowledge and language comprehension necessary to read, and the skills to communicate, gives them the fundamentals for future learning. We work tirelessly to ensure that all students have the secure foundations, needed to access a broad and balanced curriculum throughout the rest of their learning journey.

Using RWI, our students learn to read fluently so that they can put all their energy into comprehending what they read. It also allows them to spell effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into composing what they write.

When using RWI to read the children will:

  • Learn that sounds are represented by written letters (graphemes)
  • Learn 44 sounds and the corresponding letter/letter groups using simple picture prompts
  • Learn how to blend sounds
  • Learn to read words using Fred Talk
  • Read lively stories featuring words they have learned to sound out
  • Show that they comprehend the stories by answering questions

When using RWI to write the children will:

  • Learn to write the letters/letter groups which represent 44 sounds.
  • Learn to write words by saying the sounds in Fred Talk.
  • Write simple sentences.

At Ark Globe Primary we teach our students in small groups from Reception that are organised according to their specific needs. The phonemes and graphemes are taught in fun and engaging ways. Each session lasts between 45 minutes 1 hour and includes a variety of activities delivered with pace and rigour. Children learn and review sounds every day, which are reinforced during the session with reading and writing activities – new learning is put into practise.

As our students progress through the levels, they are regularly assessed to ensure they are placed in groups most appropriate for them. If a child is found to be struggling, they are tutored for an extra 10-15 minutes every day which is provided by highly trained staff.

In Nursery we begin working on phonological awareness in September and continue this focus throughout the year. In Spring term we begin focussing on oral blending and teaching the pictures associated with graphemes, then in Summer term we begin teaching Set 1 single letter sounds. This is to ensure that our students are set up for success in Reception when formal Phonics lessons begin.

Read Write Inc has proven to produce excellent results for our students, as demonstrated by their end of Year 1 Phonics screening check results:

2014 – 2015 – 100% of pupils passed the phonics screening check
2015 – 2016 – 98% of pupils passed the phonics screening check
2016 – 2017 – 98% of pupils passed the phonics screening check
2017 – 2018 – 94% of pupils passed the phonics screening check
2018 – 2019 – 98% of pupils passed the phonics screening check

Home reading

Ark Globe Primary’s EYFS and KS1 home reading system is also in line with RWI Phonics and is designed to improve our students’ fluency and love of reading. Our students take home three books each week in their book bags; their current Phonics book, a last and past Phonics book (a familiar Phonics book they have read before, either in their current group or the preceding one) and a picture book that they can share with their families to develop a love of reading and the motivation for children to learn to read themselves.

By using RWI Phonics books as home reading books we ensure that our students are reading books that match the sounds they can sound-blend and that have few exception words (called red words in RWI) and that they have ample opportunity to re-read books to build up fluency.

Our Phonics curriculum prepares students for university and to be leaders in their community by:

  • Ensuring that younger children gain phonics knowledge and language comprehension necessary to read
  • Equipping students with the skills needed to be able to communicate with their peers
  • Providing students with the fundamentals needed for future learning so that they can experience the full curriculum offer

So that students are able to read confidently and fluently, allowing them to experience the joy of reading and enabling them to access future learning needed to shoulder to shoulder with their peers in the community.

Useful links for parents

Children find it easier to learn to read and spell if they are taught pure sounds. Click here to make sure you are saying the correct pure sounds with your child at home.

Sound blending is when pupils blend sounds together to read words. Click here to watch a video tutorial for how to practise this at home.

Click here to find Parent guidance videos to help you understand our phonics programme and what you can do to help your child read.

For free Read Write Inc. Phonics eBooks, activities and advice, visit Oxford Owl for Home: https://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/read-write-inc-home

If you have any questions about the programme, please speak with our RWI Phonics Lead – Ms Phoebe Row.