Phonics at St. Paul's is changing!
We have used Read Write Inc. successfully at school for 10 years, but a change is as good as a rest, and it's time for a change. As part of our drive to continually improve, and to offer the highest quality, most consistent teaching, we have made the decision to adopt Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised as our approach to teaching phonics, early reading and spelling. We enjoyed sharing further information about this during our Parent and Carer Forum and the PowerPoint with all of the information is further down on this page. We also met with our Reception parents and were so impressed with the high attendance and support that we had. We look forward to working closely with you as we implement this change. Exciting times ahead- we will keep you updated with termly emails via Teachers2Parents.
Reading Sessions from Year 2 Onwards
Once the children have competed the Little Wandle programme they will take part in whole class guided reading sessions. Our reading skills lessons take place at least 4 times a week for 20 to 30 minutes. Within these sessions our teachers model reading strategies. These involve high quality, age-appropriate texts which are carefully selected by our staff. These are read to or with the children and provide an opportunity to teach children specific reading skills to widen their vocabulary and develop their levels of comprehension, as outlined in the National Curriculum. Questions are planned by teachers in advance to help children access a range of skills to help them to develop a greater understanding of a range of reading materials including fiction, non-fiction and poetry materials.
In our reading lessons, we use reading VIPERS (based on materials from ‘The Literacy Shed’) to help support our pupils to understand what a good reader looks like and how to approach answering reading questions.
VIPERS is an acronym which stands for:
Sequence (KS1/LKS2) or Summarise (UKS2).
All children work on VIPERS during class reading whether this is reading as a class, in a small group or one to one with an adult. We encourage children to orally talk through their answers before formally recording their answers. Children do this in a variety of ways such as discussing the answer first with their peers and/or an adult and then writing their best answer.
It would be excellent if, as parents, you could also refer to these VIPERS regularly when you are listening to your child read at home. VIPERS questions can be applied to any text that a child is reading as well as with pictures, picture books and films! When any adult is listening to a child read, all they have to do is think of questions about the book, picture or film that cover some of the VIPERS and there are some great examples below of how you can create your own questions using the following question openers. If you have any questions or are struggling with this, please contact your child’s class teacher and they will provide some additional support materials to use at home.
At St. Paul's, we use 'the Write Stuff' by teacher, author and education consultant Jane Considine from Year 2, all the way to Year 6. It brings clarity to the mechanics of writing and provides clear systems through which to focus the writer's attention. In Reception and Year 1, we are following Drawing Club which opens children's eyes to the joys of writing and encourages them to explore their imagination and creativity and deepens their vocabulary.