Phonics teaching at St Silas follows a six phase programme, starting at Foundation Stage and continuing through Key Stage 1. We follow the Letters and Sounds Scheme of work.  The children have a discrete daily 20-minute phonics lesson and comprise of a multisensory approach using a variety of resources and teaching styles.

At St Silas we use a range of phonic resources to support the delivery of our Letters and Sounds structured phonics programme.

These include:

  • Phonics Play
  • Jolly Phonics
  • Read, Write Inc
  • ORT Project x Phonics
  • ORT Sounds, Letters and Floppy Phonics F/NF
  • No Nonsense Spelling

Lessons follow this structure:

Revisit and review – where previously taught sounds are revised.

Teach – new graphemes and new high frequency words are taught.

Practise – your child will practise reading and writing letters and words, using a variety of media.

Apply – there will be opportunities to read and write captions and sentences.

Cursive handwriting is taught alongside phonics from foundation stage

The children are taught all 44 letter phonemes and how to segment words to spell them and blend words to read them.

Children read phonetically decodable books whilst learning to read. These are colour coded and progressive.


Children are regularly assessed, streamed into different ability groups and will be taught the phase at which they need to develop. Resources and activities are carefully planned to ensure that phonics sessions are well prepared for, quick fire and progressive.

Phase 1 (foundation stage) This phase focuses on speaking and listening skills. There will be opportunities for sound walks where children listen carefully to sounds around them and rhyme and story based activities.

Phase 2 (foundation stage) This is the beginning of a systematic and high quality phonics teaching approach. There will be opportunities for your child to practise the newly taught sounds and words throughout the day.

This phase starts with the teaching of the sounds that these letters make: s, a, t, p, i, n. They will then be able to begin using these sounds to blend and segment words and read simple captions. For example sat, pin, pat, tin.

Phase 3 (foundation stage) This phase moves on to the teaching of sounds represented by more than one letter.

For example; oa, ay, oo. Children will begin reading captions, sentences and questions using these sounds.

Phase 4 (Foundation Stage) This phase concentrates on the teaching of adjacent consonants e.g swim, jump, clap.

Phase 5 (through year 1 and 2) Children learn different ways of pronouncing the graphemes they already know. For example: ay, ai, eigh.

Phase 6 (through year 2) Children work on spelling, including prefixes and suffixes, doubling and dropping letters.

Phonics Screening Check

At the end of year one, your child will complete a phonics assessment which is a combination of real words and pseudo words (made up words). The aim of this check is to assess how your child uses their knowledge of phonics to read the words. You will be notified of your child’s result and if your child does not achieve the benchmark grade, further intensive support will be given in year two.


Phoneme – how a sound sounds.

Grapheme – a letter or sequence of letters that represent a phoneme (a, ai, ay, a-e and ey).

Phonics assessment at St Silas consists of:

  • The phonics tracking grids – they need to be completed three times a year (once in each term) and then handed to the phonics leader.
  • Words the children can read – linked to high frequency words in each phase
  • Sounds they recognise/read.
  • Words they can spell.

There are a wealth of resources available for you to support your child with phonics. Two websites we would recommend are: