Read Write Inc

We use a programme called Read Write Inc to teach phonics at Shoreditch Park.

Information for Parents

English Handbook (RWI information from page 30)

Learning to Read Policy

Ten top tips for reading stories to your child

  1. Make reading to your child feel like a treat - Introduce each new book with excitement.
  2. Make it a special quiet time and cuddle up so both of you can see the book.
  3. Show curiosity in what you’re going to read: Oh no! I think Arthur is going to get even angrier now.
  4. Read the whole story the frst time through without stopping too much. If you think your child might not understand something, model an explanation: Oh I think what’s happening here is that…
  5. Chat about the story: I wonder why he did that? Oh no, I hope she’s not going to… I wouldn’t have done that, would you?
  6. Avoid asking questions to test what your child remembers.
  7. Link stories to your own experiences (e.g. This reminds me of…)
  8. Read favourite stories over and over again. Get your child to join in with the bits they know.
  9. Read with enthusiasm. Don’t be embarrassed to try out different voices. Your child will love it.
  10. Read with enjoyment. If you’re not enjoying it, your child won’t.

Ten top tips for reading stories to your child

Phonics Screening Check

Watch: Information for Parents: The Phonics Screening Check

Phonics Flashcards

These packs are available now from the school office. Set 1 cards can be purchased for the new Reception children!

Set 1 cards for Nursery - Year 1

£5 per pack

Set 2 cards for Reception (Summer term) - Year 3

£5 per pack

My Reading and Writing Kit for Nursery and Reception

Includes: Phonics Flashcards, Handwriting Workbook, Wipe-clean Sheet and Pen, Bedroom Frieze and Parent Handbook!

£10 per pack


RWI Resources

“Reading for pleasure is the single biggest factor in success later in life, outside of an education. Study after study has shown that those children who read for pleasure are the ones who are most likely to fulfil their ambitions. If your child reads, they will succeed – it’s that simple.”

The Importance of Reading

Year 1 Reading Booklet

Practise reading set 1, 2 and 3 sounds using the Year 1 Reading Booklet.

Year 1 Reading Booklet

More links...

The English spelling code is one of the most complexes in the world. It has evolved over hundreds of years and has had many different influences. As a result, our words are made up of combinations of 44 different sounds but many of these sounds are spelt in different ways in different words. Furthermore, we only have 26 letters to write these sounds down. This can lead to real confusion for children as letters combine together in different words to make different sounds. For example, the letter ‘a’ sometimes makes the sound /a/ (c-a-t), or, with other letters, the sound /ay/ (d-ay) or the sound ‘air’ (f-air).  This can be overwhelming.

In order to help the children conquer this complex code, we teach it to them systematically, using a system based on a programme called Read Write Inc

We start by teaching children to read the first thirty sounds (Set 1 Sounds) and to be able to blend these sounds to read words (i.e. to know that the sounds c/a/t can blend together to read the word cat). Once they have conquered this skill, they start reading stories and texts that have words made up of the sounds they know. This means that they can embed and apply their phonic knowledge and start to build their reading fluency. At the same time, we teach them how towrite the sounds and use this knowledge to spell words, leading to writing short sentences.

As their confidence and fluency grows, we start to introduce more sounds (Set 2 and then 3) and the children read texts with increasingly more complex sounds and graphemes (different ways of spelling the sounds, e.g. /igh/, /ie/ or /ay/, /ai/). They learn that a sound can be written using 2 or 3 or even 4 letters. We call this a grapheme (e.g. igh represent the /i/ sound in the word night). Equally they learn to use these graphemes to spell words.

In short, the essence of our reading programme is based on the belief that by reading the sounds, you can read the words, and so the story. But, if it is hard to understand what sounds the words are made up of, it is hard to read the words accurately and so it is hard to understand what has been read. Additionally, if it takes too long to work out what the words are, it is difficult to understand the story as the meaning gets ‘lost’ in the individual words. Fluency and accuracy are key to comprehension

Being able to decode a text alone is not enough. Children need to comprehend what they are reading and need to be actively taught key comprehension skills from a very early age. We do this through comprehension activities linked to the stories the children come to read with Read Write Inc, and in our daily Power of Reading English lessons. We know that good readers question, check and engage with their own understanding – these are some of the skills we seek to develop. We know that decoding and comprehension should not be taught in linear progression but need to be taught simultaneously.

Our entire curriculum has a strong emphasis on vocabulary acquisition. Vocabulary is key to understanding and learning. Children need to know, through active teaching, what words mean in order to understand what they have read. Again, this is a core purpose behind the books we read to the children in the Power of Reading English programme.

Once children have learnt to read independently we continue to teach key reading strategies through the Destination Reader programme. Children are taught learning behaviours which enable them to support and listen to other points of view and to discuss and explain their ideas. Through this they then apply the seven reading strategies of predicting, inferring, asking questions, evaluating, clarifying, making connections and summarising.