At Millfields Primary School we use the Systematic Synthetic Phonics (SSP) scheme Little Wandle. This is a fully comprehensive programme where children start learning single letter sounds in the autumn term Reception and it builds in progression throughout the year and Year One, preparing children for the statutory Phonics Screening Check (PSC) that takes place at the end of year 1. 

Phonics is taught every day and children learn to apply their phonics skills in reading practice sessions daily, developing their fluency and comprehension skills along the way.

Parents' Presentation
Parents' Presentation - Year 1

Why learning to read is so important:
- It is essential for all subject areas and improves life chances.
- Having a positive attitude to reading and choosing to read have academic, social and emotional benefits for children.

How children learn to read:
- Learning phonics through a SSP, this is the only route to decoding.
- How to say the phonic sounds.
- How to blend phonic sounds to read words.
- How to increase fluency in reading sounds, words and books.

Reading fully decodable books:
- Children must read books consistent with their phonic knowledge.
- It is essential not to use other strategies to work out words (including guessing words, deducing meaning from pictures, grammar, context clues or whole word recognition).
- Books must be fully decodable for children to achieve a fluency of at least 95%.
- Children need to read books in a progressive sequence until they can decode unfamiliar words confidently.

Supporting your child with reading
Although we will teach your child to read, parents and carers can have a huge impact on their reading journey by continuing their practice at home. There are two types of reading book that your child may bring home:
- A reading practice book. This will be at the correct phonic stage for your child. They should be able to read this fluently and independently.
- A sharing book.  Your child will not be able to read this on their own. This book is for you both to read and enjoy together. They will choose this book weekly in their library slot.

Reading practice book
This book has been carefully matched to your child’s current reading level. If your child is reading it with little help, please don’t worry that it’s too easy – your child needs to develop fluency and confidence in reading.

Listen to them read the book. Remember to give them lots of praise – celebrate their success! If they can’t read a word, read it to them. After they have finished, talk about the book together.

Sharing book
In order to encourage your child to become a lifelong reader, it is important that they learn to read for pleasure. The sharing book is a book they have chosen for you to enjoy together.

Please remember that you shouldn’t expect your child to read this alone. Read it to or with them. Discuss the pictures, enjoy the story, predict what might happen next, use different voices for the characters, explore the facts in a nonfiction book. The main thing is that you have fun!

Phonics Screening Check (PSC)
Children in Year 1 take part in the Phonics Screening Check during the same week in June. Children in Year 2 will also take the check if they did not achieve the required result when in Year 1 or if they have not taken the test before. The Phonics Screening Check is designed to confirm whether individual children have learnt sufficient phonic decoding and blending skills. 

The test contains 40 words. Each child sits one to one and reads each word aloud to their teacher. The test will take approximately 10 minutes per child, although all children are different and will complete the check at their own pace. The list of words the children read is a combination of 20 real words and 20 pseudo words (nonsense words also known as alien words).

The pseudo words will be shown to your child with a picture of an alien. This provides the children with a context for the pseudo word which is independent from any existing vocabulary they may have. Pseudo words are included because they will be new to all pupils; they do not favour children with a good vocabulary knowledge or visual memory of words.

By the end of the summer term we will report the results of the check to parents and carers. We will also confirm if your child has met the standard threshold. Children who do not achieve the expected level will retake the test when they are in Year 2.

You can purchase the Little Wandle at Home Phonics Flashcards for Reception and Year 1 by clicking on the photos below. Don’t forget to check out four fun games to play with your children on the Collins website.

Little Wandle at Home First Phonics Flashcards for Reception

Little Wandle at Home More Phonics Flashcards for Reception

Little Wandle at Home Phonics Flashcards for Year 1

Phonics Leader - Mrs Rhiannon Macdonald

Phonics Link Governor - Mrs Katie Moore

Part of the Languages team.