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Phonics and Early Reading

Our Approach to Phonics and Early Reading 


‘Phonics instruction is: beneficial to all, harmful to none and crucial for some’. Unknown


At Merton Abbey, we believe that for all our children to become fluent readers and writers, phonics must be taught through a systematic and structured phonics programme.

We use Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised to plan and provide daily engaging phonics lessons. In phonics, we teach children that the letters of the alphabet represent a different sound, that these can be used in a variety of combinations and are put together to make words. The children learn to recognise all of the different sounds and combinations that they might see when they are reading or writing. 

Our phonics teaching starts in Nursery and follows a very specific sequence that allows our children to build on their growing phonic knowledge and master specific phonic strategies as they move through the school. As a result, all our children are able to tackle any unfamiliar words as they read.

At Merton Abbey, we also model the application of these strategies in shared reading and writing, both inside and outside of the phonics lesson and across the curriculum. We have a strong focus on language development for our children because we know that speaking and listening are crucial skills for reading and writing in all subjects.

The phonics subject leader is Aisling Dougan-Cleary. 

Phonics and Early Reading Policy

Progression in Disciplinary Knowledge

If you are a parent and would like more information about how to support your child with phonics at home, please follow this link to find the Reception and Year 1 overview as well as videos of the sound pronunciations, letter formation sheets and other helpful resources.