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Phonics and Reading

Phonics is recommended as the first strategy that children should be taught in helping them learn to read.  Phonics runs alongside other teaching methods to help children develop vital reading skills and give them a real love of reading – hopefully for life.


At Parkgate Primary School phonics is taught in accordance with the National Curriculum and the Revised Literacy Framework using the systematic 'Letters and Sounds' program in KS1.

Words are made up from small units of sound (phonemes) and phonics teaches children to listen carefully and identify the phonemes that make up each word.  This helps them learn to read and spell words.

In phonics lessons children are taught three main things:

1              GPCs (grapheme phoneme correspondences)

GPCs simply means that children are taught all the phonemes in the English language and ways of writing them down. 

2              Blending

Children are taught to blend sounds together by merging the individual sounds together until they can hear what the word is.  This is a vital reading skill.

3              Segmenting

Segmenting is the opposite of blending!  Children are able to say a word and then break it up into the phonemes that make it up.  This is a vital spelling skill.

Here at Parkgate Primary we use a selection of reading schemes to provide a range of genres and styles. These include (but are not limited to) Oxford Reading Tree, Collins Big Cat, Project X and Bug Club, which are then colour banded. Children will bring their reading books home every night with a reading record for parents to fill in. Children will also be listened to read in school. Please can you listen to your children read at home and if you have any questions please do not hesitate to come into school and see your child's class teacher. Through Bug Club we also provide an online reading tool for KS1. Please click on the link to access with your username and password.