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Southglade Primary School

'Believe to Achieve'



Our phonics scheme: 'Little Wandle'


Phonics is prioritised at Southglade in Foundation and Key Stage One as the fundamental building blocks to enable reading to be developed throughout school


Phonics is a method of teaching children to read by linking sounds (phonemes) and the symbols that represent them (graphemes, or letter groups).


At Southglade Primary and Nursery School, we prioritise the teaching of Early Reading and Phonics. It forms the basis of our lessons throughout all topics across the curriculum in both Foundation Stage and Key Stage One. Our main aim is to ensure every single child becomes primary literate and develops the necessary skills to leave Key Stage One with the ability to fluently decode a wide range of enriching and engaging texts at an age appropriate level and beyond.


We have developed a curriculum where reading is the priority across all subjects, acting as the ‘golden thread’ which weaves throughout all planning. Through this ‘golden thread’ we aim to provide children with secure comprehension and fluency skills, and expose them to a diverse range of vocabulary. We recognise in order to achieve this, it is essential that phonics is secure in Key Stage One.


We follow the 'Little Wandle: Revised Letters and Sounds' phonics scheme which provides skills to allow children to have consistent strategies to support with accurate decoding.


Our Phonics Philosophy

At Southglade, we believe in the approach of 'Keep up, not catch up' when working through our phonics scheme. We therefore expose all children to all sounds regardless of ability. This ensures all children have the best chance to succeed and develop their reading fluency skills.


We understand it is essential to know where each child is with their phonics development. We carry out daily assessments during the phonics sessions using adults to target children during the session and then do a revisit of the sound taught in the session straight after for any child which was identified as requiring further support to secure their understanding.


Green: Whole class initial teaching

Yellow: Instant catch up following the session for any identified children, catch up at any opportunities throughout the day

Red: Further support for those pupils who still require further support to secure their understanding (this will be through the phonics catch up sessions or through individual 1:1 provision)    


Within the 'Little Wandle' scheme there are three weekly reading sessions focused on decoding, prodocy and fluency. These weekly reading sessions form the basis of our reading assessment and the decodable book which is sent home. We also carry out bespoke interventions during 1:1 reading time based on a gap analysis of sounds which is completed each half term following the Little Wandle phonics scheme.


Children in Year 1 and those who have not passed the phonics screening in Year 2 also complete a phonics screening check practice four times throughout the year. Children who have not passed the phonics screening check in Year 1 attend the Little Wandle Year 1 phonics sessions in Year 2. 


Our Phonics Structure

Phonics is structured in to Phases starting with Foundations of phonics in nursery, moving through to phase 5 completed in Year 1. We begin teaching phonics in Early Years within 2 weeks of starting in September and the first day of starting in Key Stage One. Each child receives a 30 minute lesson 5 days a week with the 5th day planned as a consolidation/review session.


The class teacher will teach the phonics lesson, with TA's supporting any child who may need a slightly altered or differentiated approach. In a session this may be working with a few identified children on the daily sound at a slower or more in depth pace. 


Any child who needs bespoke support through a personalised curriculum will be supported by the Foundations of Phonics programme where pupils will be taught by a trained staff member. 


Phonics Phases

Nursery: Foundations for phonics 

Reception: Phase 2 - Phase 4

Year 1: Recap phase 3,4 (Autumn 1), Phase 5

Year 2: Little Wandle spelling


Working with parents

We know it is essential to work with parents to ensure they are able to work with and support their child at home with their phonics development. We send home a phonetically decodable book for children to read with their parents which supports consolidating the phonics sounds they have learnt. We also send home weekly phonics sheets to inform parents what we have taught that week including key words, sounds and letter formation. 


We offer a parent workshops for each year group where we allow parents to hear about our phonics provision and ask questions. We also support in other ways including sending home a parent pack, discussions at parents evening, regular phonetically decodable words and inviting parents in to see aspects of sessions.


Year 2 Little Wandle spelling 

Year 2 pupils who have successfully completed the Little Wandle phonics programme will complete the Little Wandle spelling scheme. This recaps the final half term of phase 5 phonics from Year 1 and begins to teach the bridge to spelling *please note this is being released throughout academic year 2023-2024 and will be updated and trained throughout the year. 


Rapid Catch Up in Key Stage 2

Pupils who still require phonics provision after Key Stage One complete Little Wandle Rapid Catch Up in Year 3 (*please note in 2023-2024 Year 4 pupils will be accessing rapid catch up to support with closing Covid gaps as they have not been taught the programme previously). This programme is taught by trained staff who follow the structure which covers phase 2-5 throughout 2 and a half terms and also includes 3 times weekly reading groups.