Imperial Avenue Infant School

Imperial Avenue Infant School

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Phonics and Reading at Imperial

Phonics and Reading at Imperial Avenue Infant School


At Imperial Avenue Infant School our aims for reading are that all children:


  • become successful at reading
  • develop a culture of reading for pleasure
  • learn the skills to make sense of reading
  • develop good comprehension and understanding
  • learn to use the higher skills to find information for themselves.


In our teaching of reading for reception and year 1, we have changed to use the Little Wandle phonics approach from January 20222 which is a synthetic, systematic program to support reading and spelling.  It teaches children to hear sounds in words, identify sounds, ascribe letters to these and eventually recognise and read words.  


In nursery, the children learn to hear and distinguish the difference between sounds before being introduced to letters. Children learn to hear rhyme and alliteration and how to blend and segment (robot talk) a word into its sounds (phonemes).  This is initially done orally. Children who are confident at doing this usually progress well with their reading and writing skills when letters are then introduced.


From reception to Year 2 children have a regular, daily phonics lesson which follow a review, teach practice and apply structure. The sessions are focused and fully interactive and have a breadth of study which includes application to both reading and writing.


Please see attached the Little Wandle overview for reception and year 1. 


In year 2 we teach spelling rules and patterns from the national curriculum.  Please see the progression for this current academic year. This year we have planned for the move to Little Wandle scheme and have ensured that all the year 1 curriculum has been taught before starting the year 2 spellings.



Imperial Avenue Infants School uses the reading books which have been written in line with the progression for Little Wandle. Gradually pupils’ confidence and skills expand and develop. All children are given a book in line with their phonic ability to support them with their phonics and seeing the link to reading.  We also allow children to take a library book home which is to support children's love of reading and is read by the adult to the child at an appropriate time. Children read three times a week with a teacher or teaching assistant as well as having some one to one sessions. Bringing their book bag every day is very important as children will read at different times and their book may be changed accordingly.


In addition, children have shared reading sessions with their teacher or teaching assistant. Children also have access to a range of library materials and class collections of books. Everyday teachers read stories to children and use interactive whiteboards to engage pupils in their reading. It is important to read for pleasure as well as to improve skills. The local library (the BRITE centre) is close to the school and we use this resource as a school.  We encourage all families to become members to help the children to select their own reading material.


We expect children to take their books home, to read regularly at home and for parents to be part of this important time. This is their reading homework. 


Children who read regularly at home generally make quicker progress by adding greatly to their ‘reading miles’.


How do we monitor progress?


Reading is assessed regularly and pupil progress is tracked on the school tracking system termly. Children are regularly assessed using a our reading assessment grids and the Little Wandle assessment information. The assessments demonstrate the child’s retelling and comprehension skills to ensure we are developing them as readers and not simply decoders of text.


Where we think pupils should make more accelerated progress, we provide small group or individual reading support/intervention to boost their learning.


We monitor home reading using our reading diaries. 


Reading resources for phonics


Little Wandle website parent page

Scholastic book readers - inline with Little Wandle progression

Collins-Big Cat series -inline with Little Wandle progression


Our Literacy coordinator at Imperial is Mrs Partridge. 

Tricky word document for each Reception and Year 1 in line with Little Wandle Scheme

Letter formation of capital letters

Year 2 common exception words taught