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We believe that English skills should be embedded throughout the curriculum and we strive to ensure that they are woven into all aspects of learning.  This cross-curricular approach enables the children to write for a real purpose and to make links between subjects.




We use Unlocking Letters and Sounds which was validated by the DfE in December 2021. We begin teaching phonics in the first few weeks of Term 1 in Reception and children make rapid progress in their reading journey. Children begin to learn the main sounds heard in the English Language and how they can be represented, as well as learning ‘Common Exception’ words for Phases 2, 3 and 4. They use these sounds to read and write simple words, captions and sentences. Children leave Reception being able to apply the phonemes taught within Phase 2, 3 and 4.

See Phase 2 ‘Actions, Images and Letter Formation’ document below. 


In Year 1 through Phase 5a, b and c, they learn any alternative spellings and pronunciations for the graphemes and additional Common Exception Words. By the end of Year 1 children will have mastered using phonics to decode and blend when reading and segment when spelling. In Year 1 all children are screened using the national Phonics Screening Check. In Year 2, phonics continues to be revisited to ensure mastery of the phonetic code and any child who does not meet age related expectations will continue to receive support to close identified gaps.

For further details please see the Unlocking Letters and Sounds progression document below.

To ensure no child is left behind at any point in the progression, children are regularly assessed and supported to keep up through bespoke 1-1 interventions. These include GPC recognition and blending and segmenting interventions. The lowest attaining 20% of pupils are closely monitored to ensure these interventions have an impact.


Reading Scheme

At Court de Wyck Church School, we promote a 'phonics first' approach and in both our guided reading sessions at school and in the books children take home, texts are very closely matched to a child's current phonics knowledge so that every child can experience real success in their reading. In these crucial early stages of reading we primarily use books from Ransom Reading Stars Phonics, to ensure complete fidelity to the Unlocking Letters and Sounds progression.

Once children progress beyond decodable texts, they move onto our book scheme so that they can continue to progress in their decoding, fluency and comprehension skills to become avid, expert readers.

Whole School Reading Challenge

Our whole school Reading Challenge rewards children with certificates for the amount of times they read either at home or at school. They can achieve the following certificates:

Emerald     10 reads

Sapphire    25 reads

Ruby          50 reads

Bronze       75 reads

Silver        100 reads

Gold          150 reads

Super Reader 200 reads 


Teachers plan units of learning that are based around sustained pupil exposure to high quality text/stimulus. This captures pupils' interests, excites their imagination and sustains their engagement over an extended time frame.  Progression is planned so that pupil knowledge and understanding of different genre is built up over time.

We place great importance on the teaching of spellings.  From Y2-6, spellings are matched to National Curriculum spelling rules.  Children have weekly spellings to learn at home.  These are tested in class weekly.  Each term we have a 'Big Spell' to assess which spellings the children know.

Grammar and Punctuation

We use the National Curriculum as a resource, this sets out the learning for all year groups in relation to grammar and punctuation. 


All children are given a Letterjoin log-in and password so they can practise their handwriting at home. This supports the handwriting lessons your child will be working on in school. See your child's teacher for more details.