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Abbey Primary School

A caring, sharing, achieving school, putting the child at the heart of everything we do.

Reading at Home

How do we learn to read in the Foundation Stage?

 

We learn through a system called “phonics”.

The details of the different phases are below.

 

Phase 1

Phase 1 develops listening skills and an awareness of different sounds. These skills are vital for learning to blend sounds in order to read words.

This phase consists of,

  • Identifying sounds in the environment and telling the difference between different sounds.
  • Identifying and making different sounds eg. Pop, whee, sssh, zzzzz
  • Saying what sound an object begins with eg. c for cat
  • Sounding out simple words eg. cat…….c-a-t
  • Blending sounds to make words eg. d-o-g…….dog
  • Alliteration – noticing words which begin with the same sound and making silly sentences eg. seven slippery snakes sat silently in the sun.
  • Hearing rhyming words and identifying odd words out eg. hat, mat, cow.
    These activities are for developing sound recognition but not for recognising the written letters yet.
    Children who are working at this phase will bring home a book with no words in. Please encourage them to tell the story by looking at the pictures and ask them questions about what has happened and what might happen next.
    You can help your child by,
  • Listening to your child talking and by modelling back to them any incorrect words, sounds or tenses (eg. Child says “He go-ed to the shop” and you answer, “Yes, he went to the shop”).
  • Modelling good listening by making eye contact, asking relevant questions and commenting on what has been said.
  • Working with your child to identify the first sound in objects around them and in the pictures we send home.
  • Spending a little time every day sharing their books with them.
     
     
    Phase 2
    In phase 2 we learn to recognise the individual letters and say the letter sounds (eg.”a” as in “apple”) Then we blend them together to read the whole word,              c…a…t    =   cat.
    Your child will also learn that there are some odd words that we can’t “sound out” such as “was” and “one”. In Foundation we call these star words.
     
    You can help your child by,
  • Listening to them read for a few minutes every day.
  • Talking about the story, asking them questions about what has happened or what they think might happen next.
  • Giving them specific praise so that they know which reading behaviour to repeat eg. “I really liked the way you said all the sounds and blended them together.”
  • Displaying their letters or words around the house and practicing them little and often.
     
    Phase 3
    In phase 3 we learn to recognise digraphs. These are pairs of letters that work together to make a different sound eg. “c” and “h” together make the digraph ch (as in chip).
    Then we blend them together to read the whole word.  
    ch…i….p    =   chip
    Your child will also continue to learn that there are some odd words that we can’t “sound out” such as “could” and “people”.
     
    You can help your child by,
  • Listening to them read for a few minutes every day.
  • Talking about the story, asking them questions about what has happened or what they think might happen next.
  • Giving them specific praise so that they know which reading behaviour to repeat eg. “I really liked the way you said all the sounds and blended them together.”
  • Displaying their letters or words around the house and practicing them little and often. 

Please try to spend a few minutes reading with your child every day. Your help is vital in laying the foundations for reading which will stay with them throughout their life. At first it might seem slow but persevere and you will be amazed at how quickly they begin to read independently.

 

Please remember to write in their diary each time you hear them read their school reading book. There are four spaces for each week and children will be rewarded for reading four times at home.

 

Your child will be heard individually at least once per week by a member of staff as well as reading in a small ability group every day.

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