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Gifford Primary


Curriculum Summary Rationale 


Curriculum Whole School Overview 

Whole School Overview



Phonics is the systematic teaching of the sounds, or 'phonemes', that accompany the written letters ('graphemes') in English. It is designed to teach children to become confident and fluent readers by the end of Year 2.

All children in Early Years and Key Stage 1 have a phonics session every day where they are introduced to new sounds and practise the sounds that they are familiar with.

At Gifford, we follow 'Letters and Sounds', a document published by the Department for Education. However we do not follow a particular reading scheme, but we use resources from First News, Oxford Reading Tree and Floppy's Phonics to support in our planning and teaching.

Year 1 Phonics Screening

At the end of Year 1, children will undertake a statutory phonics screening check. This is a short assessment to make sure that children have learnt phonics to an appropriate standard.

There are 40 words in the screening check which children are asked to read on a one-to-one basis with their teacher. The check is made up of 'real words' (eg. 'mud') and 'non-words' (eg. 'splog') and children need to apply their phonic knowledge to read all words.


Our reading books are graded using the ‘Book Bands’ system. We use a range of schemes including Oxford Reading Tree. We support the children’s progress through these books and promote the ‘love’ for reading across the curriculum in class and the main library. Each child is heard reading at least once a week during a group Guided Reading session with either the teacher or a teaching assistant. Children are then questioned on their understanding of the book they have read and supported in progressing further in reading. The children are encouraged to bring in their reading books weekly so they can be changed at least once a week. Parents need to sign the child's reading record to acknowledge they have read with their child. We encourage parents to read with their child regularly.