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Woodlands Park Primary School

Woodlands Park Primary School

Phonics - Read Write Inc.

Learning to read is the most important thing your child will learn at our school. Everything else depends on it, so we put as much energy as we possibly can into making sure that every single child learns to read as quickly as possible. 

We want your child to love reading – and to want to read for themselves. This is why we put our efforts into making sure they develop a love of books as well as simply learning to read.

How will my child be taught to read? 

We start by teaching phonics to the children in the Reception class. This means that they learn how to ‘read’ the sounds in words and how those sounds can be written down. This is essential for reading, but it also helps children learn to spell well. We teach the children simple ways of remembering these sounds and letters. Ask them to show you what these are.  

The children also practise reading (and spelling) what we call ‘tricky words’, such as ‘once,’ ‘have,’ ‘said’ and ‘where’.  

The children practise their reading with books that match the phonics and the ‘tricky words’ they know. They start thinking that they can read and this does wonders for their confidence.  

The teachers read to the children, too, so the children get to know all sorts of stories, poetry and information books. They learn many more words this way and it also helps their writing.  

How will I know how well my child is doing? 

We will always let you know how well your child is doing.  

We use various ways to find out how the children are getting on in reading. We use the information to decide what reading group they should be in. Your child will work with children who are at the same reading level as him or her. Children will move to a different group if they are making faster progress than the others. Your child will have one-to-one support if we think he or she needs some extra help to keep up.   

We also use a reading test so that we can make sure that all our children are at the level that they should be for their age compared to all the children across the country.  

In the summer term, the government asks us to do a phonics check of all the Year 1 children. That gives us extra information about their progress. We will talk to you about how well your child has done, and especially if we have any worries at all. 

How long will it take to learn to read well? 

By the end of Year 2, your child should be able to read aloud books that are at the right level for his or her age. In Year 3 we concentrate more on helping children to understand what they are reading, although this work begins very early on. This happens when the teacher reads to the children and also when the children read their own story book.  

How do I know the teaching will be good?  

All the staff have been trained to teach reading in the way we do it in this school. We believe that it is very important that all the teachers and teaching assistants work in the same way. Senior teachers watch other teachers teaching to make sure that the children are learning in the way we want them to learn.  

If you are worried about the teaching or you have any questions, please come to school and talk to us.  

What can I do to help? Is there anything that I shouldn't do? 


You will be invited to a meeting so that we can explain how we teach reading. Please come and support your child. We would very much like you to know how to help.  

Your child will bring different sorts of books home from school. It helps if you know whether this is a book that your child can read on their own or whether this is a book that you should read to them. The teacher will have explained which is which. Please trust your child’s teacher to choose the book(s) that will help your child the most. 

Help your child to sound out the letters in words and then to ‘push’ the sounds together to make a whole word. Try not to refer to the letters by their names. Help your child to focus on the sounds. You can hear how to say the sounds correctly at this link: 

Story Time at Home 

Sometimes your child might bring home a picture book that they know well. Please don’t say, ‘This is too easy.’ Instead, encourage your child to tell you the story out loud; ask them questions about things that happen or what they think about some of the characters in the story. 

We know parents and carers are very busy people. But if you can find time to read to your child as much as possible, it helps him or her to learn about books and stories. They also learn new words and what they mean. Show that you are interested in reading yourself and talk about reading as a family. You can find out about good stories to read to your child here:  

At Woodlands Park Primary School, we have a passion for teaching your children reading and ensure that all children to have access to high quality teaching and learning environments in order that your children develop a love and enthusiasm for reading.

If you would like to find out more about the Ruth Miskin Read Write Inc Programme, please follow the link below.

Ruth Miskin - Read Write Inc

Here you will find information from one of our phonics and reading parent meetings.There are visual slides, alongside detailed notes for each section. Miss Sansom is our Phonics Leader and she is happy to help you and your child with any questions or support that is needed.



As a school, we are working towards one shared aim: to build a community of readers who have a pleasure and enjoyment for reading. This doesn’t just mean liking reading, but also having the willingness to read. To be able to truly achieve this, there are skills we need to support the children in building and practising throughout their reading journey.



To be able to read, children need to be taught the alphabetic code. That is, when they see letters, the can say sounds they represent, so they can decode words accurately. The problem with the English language, is that it very complex. Our language consists of 44 sounds we make when saying words (/m/, /a/, /s/), only 26 letters in the alphabet (a, b, c…) and over 150 ways of spelling these 44 sounds!! Children in England are instantly pushed into the deep end. Take Spanish for example: the alphabetic code here has only 24 sounds, 26 letters in the alphabet and just 29 ways of spelling them – neat and simplistic! Children in Spain learn to read quickly.


Think about learning to play a musical instrument…

Most of us see playing an instrument to be a specialised skill, a talent, something that is impressive. But, so is reading! Humans are not born with the ability to just read. They have to learn the skill in incremental steps and practise regularly.

When learning an instrument, children will go through these stages:

  • Learn how to hold their instrument and play 2 or 3 basic notes until they can play them quickly and without thinking
  • Practise using these notes to play simple tunes… which again, they repeatedly practise until they play quickly and fluently
  • Learn a few more notes and practise
  • Use everything they know and can do easily to play a new melody… which again, they practise, over and over.

Reading needs that same treatment for it to be most successful.