Early Reading and Phonics Q&A

Thank you to everyone who attended the Early Reading and Phonics Q&A on Tuesday 21st September. Below were some of the commonly asked questions that we answered. If you would like any more information or have any questions, please see your child’s teacher. 

Please click here to refer to the Early Reading and Phonics information blog post. 

As a school, we have invested in a high quality phonics program which has specific actions, corresponding pictures and resources. At the moment, we are unable to share these with you, however we hope to be able to in the near future. Please be aware that resources you can buy (including apps on tablets) may have different resources and representations. 

Where can we find out what the children are learning in phonics weekly?

The class blogs are updated at the end of every week and there will be information about what we are learning in phonics, as well as other subjects. 

What day will the children change their book?

Every Monday your child will swap their phonetically decodable reading book for a new one. Alongside this, they will also swap their reading for pleasure book for a new reading for pleasure book. 

Should my child be able to read their reading for pleasure book?

No. This book is for you to read to your child. You may ask them to spot some letters/common exception words they have learnt in school if you feel it is appropriate but the purpose of bringing this book home is for you to enjoy a range of high quality stories with your child. 

How do we know how to pronounce the sounds correctly?

Please click here to watch a video. It is really important that the phonemes are pronounced correctly. Some phonemes are softer than others and this is a common misconception for lots of children. 

How can we find out the actions to complement the phonemes?

At the moment, we are unable to share a list with you. However, we encourage you to ask your child or child’s class teacher. 

Do I need to write in my child’s reading record that will be given to them on Monday 27th September?

We would like you to write in this every time you read with your child. Teachers will look at these comments to measure your child’s reading progress at home and will occasionally comment to support with hints and tips.

What can I do at home to support my child?

Using your child’s reading book, you can:

  • Match spoken words with written words by encouraging your child to point to each word 1:1 as they read.
  • Reread it multiple times to build confidence.
  • Encourage children to find and use the phonemes they have been learning. 
  • Blend phonemes to read simple CVC words, and later more complex words.
  • Practise reading common exception words (CEW) and spot them in their reading book.
  • Ask questions to check comprehension.

Should I read with my child every day? How long should I read with my child each day?

Every child is different. Reading with your child little and often is the best way to support their phonics and reading skills. Therefore, we encourage you to read with them every day. We suggest that initially, you could read with your child for 10 minutes a day and you might read a couple of pages a night. As your child’s phonic knowledge and ability progresses, we ask that you read the whole book each night. This supports you child to develop their blending, decoding and fluency skills. Reading the same book daily for several days helps to develop fluency and embed phonic knowledge and skills. 

Does my child need to bring their book bag to school every day?

We encourage your child to bring their book bag every day. 

What is blending?

Blending involves looking at a written word, looking at each grapheme (letter) and using knowledge to work out which phoneme (sound) each grapheme (letter) represents and then merging these phonemes together to make a word. This is the basis of reading. You can click here to see a video of blending

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