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Phoenix Infant Academy

Phonics and Reading


At Phoenix Infant Academy, we love reading!  We strive to develop reading skills with our pupils in order to improve their life chances, provide them with life skills and promote reading for pleasure and enjoyment.  

Our intent is:

  • To provide a language-rich environment that promotes a culture of reading and writing
  • To place books at the heart of daily school life    
  • To develop in pupils an interest in and a love of books and literature that will not only support their learning across the curriculum but also enrich their lives
  • To value and celebrate diversity in culture and language
  • To develop children’s competence in both dimensions of reading: word reading and comprehension
  • To ensure all of our children transition to junior school as enthusiastic, fluent and confident readers


Through high-quality teaching and learning approaches, regular monitoring and assessment, along with a joint commitment between home and school, we support all children to learn to read. All children read aloud during phonics or whole class reading sessions. Children read aloud to an adult in school where they also have the opportunity to discuss a book.

At Phoenix Infant Academy, children learn phonics through the Read Write Inc (RWI) programme. 

Read Write Inc. Phonics is a highly successful literacy programme for Foundation Stage and KS1 children created by Ruth Miskin and published by Oxford University Press. The scheme provides a structured and systematic approach to teaching Phonics. It is designed to create fluent readers, confident speakers and willing writers. 

As children progress through the scheme, they are taught how to:

  • recognise sounds that individual letters make
  • identify sounds that different combinations of letters make
  • graphemes
  • blend these together to make a word.

Children can then use this knowledge to de-code new words they hear or see. Children develop their 'Fred Talk' skills to increase their ability to blend sounds. This structured approach allows children to learn and consolidate Phonics knowledge, which can then be transferred into all aspects of the curriculum.  

Across the school, children have daily phonics lessons which they enjoy. Each session is broken up into different parts, including: revision of previous sounds taught, teaching of a new sound, reading words with the new sound and writing them. 

Phonics is embedded across the curriculum and children are encouraged to use phonics to support them in a range of activities. Phonics resources are displayed in each classroom across the school, including the RWI sounds and tricky red words. Adults model to children how to use these to support their writing in all lessons across the curriculum, children are then encouraged to use these independently.

Children are streamed for daily reading sessions across the school to ensure all children's learning needs are met. It also ensures that children gain sense of achievement and continue to thrive in their Phonics lessons. 

As children progress into Year 2, they are explicitly taught reading skills to support their learning. This includes comprehension so they can deepen their understanding of texts, skimming and scanning to find key information and comparing books to one another.


We want every child to leave our school with a secure knowledge of Phonics so they are confident, fluent readers, making expected or more progress, with a life-long love of reading. Further, we aim for children to be able to apply their Phonics knowledge across the curriculum, confidently spelling words either correctly or phonetically using the sounds they have learnt. 

Attainment in reading is measured using statutory assessments in EYFS and Key Stage 1, including the Phonics Screening Check. Additionally, we track our own reading attainment through RWI half termly assessments. 

Reading is the golden thread running through a child's learning journey at Phoenix Infant Academy. We give all children the opportunity to access texts from a range of cultures or genres to inspire them to question or learn more. We strongly believe that reading unlocks all learning; holding the key to future success in all areas of the curriculum and is fundamental to a child’s academic success.



       James Carter, Poet

On a daily basis children have opportunities to read for pleasure.  We have developed our school reading spine and high quality books are shared with the children during the school day; for example, during story time which takes place at the start of every day. Reading and quality literature is implicitly interwoven into our curriculum through the use of key texts to expose our children to various genres and famous authors, and to enhance the variety of exciting projects that we teach.  We celebrate reading through author visits, book fairs and school events including Book Week


Our online home reading records, with comments from parents, courtesy of Learning With Parents


We endeavour to involve and train parents/carers in supporting phonics and reading at home through workshops, information sessions, newsletters and online resources. Through the rigorous assessment of pupils through this scheme, we ensure that pupils select appropriate books to take home for reading. For information and tutorials on how to support your child learning to read, please visit:

For further information, please contact English Lead, Miss Austin, on 01753 521888 or