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At St John’s C of E Primary School, we are passionate about ensuring all children become confident and enthusiastic readers and writers, and we believe that Phonics provides the foundation in supporting children to develop these skills in order for this to become achievable.

Our pupils use our bespoke phonics program based on the Letters and Sounds progression. Pupils take part in daily phonics lessons from Reception to Year 2, to develop their confidence in reading and begin to apply knowledge of phase 5 phonemes, increasing their prosody in order to improve comprehension skills. This will continue through KS1 and beyond. 

We start teaching Phonics in Reception, which ensures children build on their growing knowledge of the alphabetic code, mastering phonics to read and spell as they move through school.

As a result, our children are able to tackle any unfamiliar words as they read. At St John’s C of E Primary School, we also model the application of the alphabetic code through phonics in shared reading and writing, both inside and outside of the phonics lesson and across the curriculum. We have a strong focus on language development for our children because we know that speaking and listening are crucial skills for reading and writing in all subjects.

The teaching of Phonics is fast-paced, and we encourage all children to actively participate in each lesson, and by encouraging the children to take ownership of their learning we are continuously striving for excellence.

At St John’s C of E Primary School we aim to ensure that we provide all children with the fundamental skills that will enable them to be confident and fluent readers.


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Phonics at St John's

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Phonics Screening Check

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Phonics Games

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Phonics Resources


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Reading Curriculum

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3 I's

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Reading at St John's

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Reading in a year

Reading is a skill we continue to develop throughout our lives, but starting this process as early as possible has significant benefits for our continued success as readers. Reading is an exercise for the mind. It helps kids calm down and relax, opening doors of new knowledge to enlighten their minds. Kids who read grow up to have better cognitive skills.
Research shows that ‘Poor vocabulary is the primary cause of academic failure.’ [Becker 1977]. Aside from the direct teaching of vocabulary, which we undertake at school, reading is the most valuable way in which we can develop children’s spoken and written vocabulary.
This vital vocabulary development starts at an early age, in the years before children even begin primary school. The following statistics demonstrate how important reading is to children’s early development:

• By the age of two, children learn a new word every two hours. This means that by the time they start school, they should be familiar with over 10,000 words.                      
• Children who do well in primary school have over 7,000 root words, whereas those who are unable to meet age-related expectations have only about 3,000 root words.
• There is a difference in reading performance equivalent to just over a year's schooling, between young people who never read for enjoyment and those who read for up to 30minutes per day.
• A child with weak language skills at age five is much less likely to be a strong reader at the age of 11 than a five year old with strong language skills.
• Children who often read books at age 10 and more than once a week at age 16 gain higher results in maths, vocabulary and spelling tests at age 16 than those who read less regularly.

 At St John’s C of E Primary school, we believe teaching every child to read well, making time within the school day to read, and embedding a culture of reading will make a profound difference to children’s lives!

Within all subjects, we are committed to promoting opportunities for children to read; whether through research in history, or presentations they create in Design Technology. Opportunities to read are cherished. Our mission is to create confident, fluent readers who develop a broad range of reading skills. Pupils are constantly exposed to new vocabulary to improve articulation and comprehension. Reading promotes a better understanding of the world. Understanding people, places and events increases knowledge and provides opportunities for children to apply knowledge.

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