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St Joseph's Catholic Primary School

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At St Joseph’s school we are passionate about our phonics teaching and learning! We use an approach based upon the Letters and Sounds Framework that we developed when working with the Springhill English Hub in Southampton. This work helped us to reflect and improve upon our practice! We are now very proud of the excellent progress our children make and we pride ourselves on using more of a mastery approach in all sessions!


We teach by streaming into differentiated phonics groups, meaning that the children have a good quality daily session based closely upon the letter sounds and tricky words they next need to learn. We base all of our children’s next steps upon regular teacher assessment, and we ensure that all children are reading fully decodable texts that are matched closely to their learning. All children have the opportunity to share their reading books with a grown up at school before they take them home to share with their families, and we have received excellent feedback from our parents who are pleased with the confidence and progression they can see in their child’s reading.


The children who we feel may need extra support with their phonics learning are quickly identified and offered regular extra interventions to help them to become more self-assured readers. Our goal is for all children at St Josephs to be afforded the tools and skills they need to become confident, effective readers and for our children to begin to foster a genuine love of reading from reception upwards! We are working hard to make this vision come true, and all members of staff are committed to helping each child they work with upon their reading journey. 


Phonics Screening Check

The Phonics Screening Check is a government assessment that takes place when children are in Year 1, usually in the summer term. It contains 40 words divided into two sections of 20 words. Both sections contain a mixture of real words and pseudo-words. All pseudo-words in the check are accompanied by a picture of an imaginary creature. This provides a context for the child (naming the type of imaginary creature) to ensure that they are not trying to match the pseudo-word to a word in their vocabulary.


Please see the phonics screening check materials below for more information. 

Phonics screening check: 2019 materials - GOV.UK (