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Willowdown Primary School

Happy Children, Successful Learners, Confident Individuals


At Willowdown Primary, we use Letters and Sounds as the basis for the planning of our high quality, systematic phonics programme .  Phonics begins at Nursery and is continued through the EYFS and KS1 classes.  


Within Nursery, Children will progress through phase 1,  which contains 7 aspects of listening and  sound discrimination . Each aspect is designed to help children to listen attentively, discriminate between phonemes, use sound talk to segment words, to develop children's vocabulary and ability to confidently communicate with adults and children. 


Reception Children will begin formal phonics lessons on their first day of school.  Every day, children will learn a new phoneme and common exception word (CEW). They will move on from oral blending in Nursery to blending and segmenting with letters. In every lesson, children will have opportunities to practise these skills through reading and writing activities. Reception aged children will progress through phase 2,3 and 4. 


KS1 children will begin the academic year with a recap of phase 4, before progressing onto phase 5 phonics.  Phase 5 will focus on alternative spellings, spelling and reading two syllable and three syllable words. 


Reading Scheme 


At Willowdown Primary School, we use Bug Club reading books and Big Cat reading scheme in our guided reading lessons. For Home Reading, Children are given phonetically decodable Bug Club Books.  Books are closely matched to the children current phonics phase.  Children will progress through the reading scheme,  once they are able to read a book with fluency, they will be given a new book to practise.