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Early Reading


At St Mary’s, we use the highly successful Read Write Inc (RWI) phonics programme to teach our children to read. This programme enables children to quickly and confidently learn letter sounds and apply their phonic knowledge to reading and writing.


Benefits of RWI phonics:

  •  Makes learning to read focused and fun.
  •  Uses colourful and exciting prompts to teach all children to read and write.
  •  Gives children books matched to the sounds they are learning in order to develop accuracy, speed and confidence.
  •  Is an all-inclusive phonics programme for children in EYFS and KS1.
  •  Assessments are used half-termly so that children are grouped by ability.
  •  Small groups enable each child to be heard reading by an adult every day.
  •  Struggling readers are identified straight away and supported using ‘Fresh Start.’
  •  More than 80% of children reach the required standard in the Year 1 phonics screening.


RWI phonics across school


Foundation Stage: RWI in Reception is taught as a whole class until the initial sounds have been embedded. Once the sounds have been taught, assessments will take place to determine groupings.


Key Stage One: RWI groups will be set following assessments carried out by the reading coordinator. Sessions will take place daily for one hour. Once children can successfully apply their phonic knowledge, lessons will be reduced and replaced with spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPAG).


Key Stage Two: Additional phonics support will take the form of intervention groups for those children with the greatest need in Year 3-6.

Accelerated Reader


Once children can confidently read the 44 phonemes, children will move onto Accelerated Reader (year 1 onwards). Accelerated Reader is an assessment-based tool used to manage independent reading.


Benefits of Accelerated Reader:


  •  Children are assessed half-termly and given an accurate reading age and book level.
  •  Gives children the opportunity to read a wide range of fiction and non-fiction books matched to their level.
  •  When children complete a reading book, they take a short, online comprehension quiz to determine their understanding.
  •  Children progress through the reading levels if they successfully pass their comprehension quizzes to ensure they are continually challenged.
  •  Local secondary schools use Accelerated Reader.
  •  Children can access the library independently and can take comprehension quizzes either in school or at home, using the link below.

Reading Lessons


Whole class guided reading lessons are carried out from year 2 onwards. Each year group will read extracts and whole texts in a variety of genres, with differentiated questioning and challenging tasks.


Benefits of whole class guided reading:


  •  Allows children to access high-level texts.
  •  Enables children to hear how unfamiliar language and sentence structure should sound.
  •  Helps to aid comprehension of challenging texts.
  •  Develop children’s ability to work collaboratively in pairs, small groups and as a whole class.
  •  Follow up activities meet children’s individual needs.
  •  Activities centred around reading domains.


Home Reading


Children participating in RWI Phonics (foundation stage and lower KS1) will take home two reading books. The first book will be a RWI reading bag book, which reinforces children’s learning of phonics at the appropriate level, helping them to make even faster progress and the second book will be chosen by each child from the class library and develop a love of reading.


Children accessing Accelerated Reader have unlimited access to the school library as well as access to myON. MyON is a personalised digit library linked directly to each child’s reading age and book level and gives them access to over 6,000 texts. MyOn can be accessed using the link below.


Further Information for Parents and Carers


What is Read Write Inc Phonics?


How to say the Read Write Inc Phonics sounds


What is the Year 1 Phonics Screening Check?


What is Accelerated Reader?