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Boughton Leigh Infant School

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Early Reading and Phonics

Subject Leader - Mrs Stretton

Our local Service Station Moto have brought us our Read,Write, Inc Book Bags for us to take home and practise our reading!



At Boughton Leigh we believe that a quality curriculum should teach the skills of phonics and early reading, develop children’s love of reading, writing and discussion. We aim to inspire an appreciation of a rich and varied literary heritage and a habit of reading widely and often. We offer a nurturing culture in which children take pride in their writing, can write clearly, accurately, adapting their language and style for a range of contexts. We want to motivate children to be confident in the art of speaking and listening, using discussion to communicate and further their learning. We believe that children need to develop a secure knowledge base in English, which follows a clear pathway in progression with regular assessment as they advance through the primary curriculum. It is also important that pupils develop a secure basis in English skills allowing them to access a high-quality wider education.




At Boughton Leigh Infant School, we use Read, Write, Inc. by Ruth Miskin (RWI) to teach early reading and writing. It provides a structured and systematic approach to teaching Literacy. We teach in this way because, research shows that, when phonics is taught in a structured way – starting with the easiest sounds and progressing through to the most complex – it is the most effective way of teaching young children to read. According to the DfE (Department for Education), ‘almost all children who receive good teaching of phonics, will learn the skills they need to tackle new words’. They can then go on to read any kind of text fluently and confidently, and to read for enjoyment.


In our school we realise the importance of phonics as it provides children with the building blocks needed to become successful readers. We begin in our Nursery where the children are taught to name the pictures and Fred Talk (orally blend). Children are then taught their set 1,2 and 3 sounds across Reception and Key Stage 1 (KS1). They are taught how to recognise the sounds that each individual letter makes, identify the sounds that different combinations of letters make – such as ‘ch’ or ‘ar’ and then blend these sounds together from left to right to make a word. Children can then use this knowledge to ‘de-code’ new words they hear or see. In KS1 children learn different representations of a sound (‘graphemes’), for example ay, a-e, ai. This enables children to become more confident with not only their reading, but also spelling and develops skills which are transferrable to their Literacy. In Year 1 there is a greater emphasis on the reading of the sounds, whereas in year 2 this progresses by using the graphemes more in spelling.


Across all years children have daily phonics lessons every morning and Reception and Year 1 have additional whole class Speed Sounds Lesson in the afternoon (Year 2 in the autumn term). Each daily phonics session is broken up into different parts including: revision of previous sounds taught, teaching of a new sound, reading words with the new sound and writing them.



Children are grouped by stage not age for RWI and during this time we use RWI phonic based reading books which matches the children’s phonic ability.  This ensures that there is consistency between our phonics and reading sessions and that children apply their new phonics knowledge to reading books, giving them a purpose and sense of achievement. The children take home a black and white copy of the book they have been focusing on in their lessons. By reading it again they are able to become accurate readers and develop fluency. In addition to this they take home RWI book bag books matched to the level they are on to ensure continuity.


We show high fidelity to this scheme to ensure all children from Nursery to Year 2 are taught first quality phonics. All of our staff have received comprehensive Read, Write, Inc. training from our qualified Read, Write, Inc. trainer and have full access to the RWI Portal so they can watch training and coaching videos and use a wide range of supportive documents to ensure high quality teaching. We also have ongoing CPD for both our Reading Leader and Reading Teachers through our termly Development Days with our Trainer. In addition to this, our Reading Lead monitors the teaching of phonics and early reading and the progress of children to ensure staff are equipped to teach with the expertise and skills required to promote excellent progress, as well as a love of reading. Areas for development are identified and staff are given the appropriate coaching to address any gaps in their knowledge. Practice Sessions are also held by our Reading Lead to ensure our staff are the best reading teachers they can be so that every child learns to read.  Whilst on the program our children are assessed using the RWI phonics assessment every half term and then grouped according to their stage not age. Our Reading Lead tracks and monitors every child based on their progress and interventions are implemented for those children who need it.

When children have completed the RWI programme (this will usually be towards the end of Key Stage one) and are fluent readers, they further develop their comprehension RWI Comprehension Program. Children continue to read during their English lessons using Language and Literacy based texts and are also presented with a range of age appropriate texts and extracts which will challenge them, enable them to develop their reading skills and further build a love of reading. We continue to use RWI strategies to model expression and intonation to enhance children’s reading.




  • The result of phonics teaching at our school will be that children will have a secure knowledge of phonics, enabling them to become fluent confident readers by the end of Key Stage 1, making expected progress or more, with a life-long love of reading. They have a passion for reading and listening to stories and can participate in discussions including evaluating an author’s use of language and the impact this can have on the reader.
  • Attainment in phonics is measured by the phonics screen Test at the end of Year 1 and ongoing assessment throughout the Read, Write, Inc programme.