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Phonics at Farnborough Grange


At Farnborough Grange, the systematic teaching of phonics is of high priority and is taught every day. We follow the Read Write Inc programme to get children off to a flying start with their phonics and reading, starting at the very beginning of a child’s time with us in Nursery. During this time, children focus on using body percussion, environmental sounds discrimination, rhyming and oral blending/segmenting. In the Summer Term, the children start to learn Set 1 sounds, and focus on reading and writing these letters in preparation for their transition into Key Stage 1.   

As the children progress into Reception and onto Key Stage 1, the children continue to follow the RWI scheme, learning to read fluently and with understanding. Once children are confident in the Set 1 sounds they will progress onto Set 2 and then onto Set 3 which provides the alternative pronunciation of the sounds they have already learnt.  


The teaching of phonics using the Read Write Inc. Phonics programme helps pupils learn how to: 

  • Decode letter-sound correspondences quickly and effortlessly, using their phonic knowledge and skills 

  • Read common exception words on sight 

  • Understand what they read 

  • Read aloud with fluency and expression 

  • Spell quickly and easily by segmenting the sounds in words 

  • Acquire good letter formation skills. 


Phonics is taught daily from the first full week in school at the beginning of Reception. All children are assessed regularly so they work with children at the same level. This ensures that children are placed in groups that will target their identified needs and supports all children to participate in lessons confidently.  


Phonics is embedded across the curriculum and the children are encouraged to use phonics to support them in a range of topic work. Phonics is displayed in each classroom across the school, including the RWI sounds and tricky red words. The children are encouraged to use these to support their writing in all lessons across the curriculum. 


Fast Track Tutoring (a RWI intervention) is used to support any children who need additional support in phonics. Our aim is for children to ‘keep up’ rather than ‘catch up’.  



Terms and Meanings that we use in phonics 


PhonicsPhonics teaches children to listen to and identify the sounds that make up words. This helps them to read and write words.
PhonemeA single sound that can be made by one or more letters – e.g. s, k, z, oo, ph, igh.


Saying the individual sounds that make up a word and then merging or blending the sounds together to say the word – used when reading. e.g. c-a-t blended together says cat. 

SegmentThis is when a word is broken up into indevidual sounds for spelling e.g. cat is segmented into c-a-t. 
DigraphTwo letters which together make one sound e.g. ch, sh, th, oa, ai, ay
TrigraphThree letters that together make one sound e.g. igh


Most letters of the alphabet (excluding the vowels: a,e,i,o,u).


The letters you write to create the sound e.g. ai/ ay/a for 'a'.

Red Words

Words that are difficult to sound out e.g. said, the, because.

Green WordsWords that can be blended together and read e.g. ch- i- n
Fred TalkFred our phonics frog speaks in sounds only, e.g. ch-a-m-p