Ruislip Gardens Primary School

Phonics at Ruislip Gardens Primary School

Phonics is taught systematically in reception and key stage one using the DfE validated Twinkl phonics scheme.

Our phonics curriculum is designed to:

  • Equip children to become readers for life.

  • Equip the children to become effective spellers.

  • Encourage children to see learning to spell as part of the process of learning to write.

  • Enable children to understand word construction.

  • Develop vocabulary and the ability to explore text.

  • Enable children to apply phonic knowledge to reading and writing.

Teaching and Learning

In Reception and key stage phonics is a planned 20 minutes session which is taught daily.

During the sessions the children are taught:

  • Grapheme- phoneme correspondence in a clearly defined sequence.

  • The skill of blending phonemes to read words.

  • The skill of segmenting words into their constituent phonemes to spell.

  • That blending and segmenting are reversible skills.

Reading books in Reception and Key stage one are linked to the phonics levels.

Overview of the 6 Levels of Phonics

Level 1

This level is where the children will start in the Reception class and it supports the development of listening skills and phonological awareness

Level 2

This is the start of systematic phonic learning. Grapheme- phoneme correspondence is introduced for the 19 graphemes in level two. The children learn to segment the phonemes in words to spell and to blend the phonemes to read. They learn the graphemes to represent the phonemes and learn the correct letter formation for those graphemes. Common exception words are introduced in level 2

Level 3

This level completes the teaching of the alphabet and then moves on vowel digraphs such as ‘ai’ ‘ee’ and trigraphs such as ‘igh’ and ‘ear’ in which are sounds represented by two or more letters. The children continue to develop their blending and segmenting skills and learn the common exception Level 4

In this stage the children learn how to read and spell words containing adjacent consonants such as ‘cl’ ‘sp’ ‘nk’. There are no new phonemes taught within this phase. Children learn the Level 4 common exception words.

Level 5

Teaching and learning within level 5 looks at alternative spellings for some of the phonemes such as ‘ay’ for ‘ai’ and ‘ea’ for ‘ee’. Children learn the level 5 common exception words

Level 6

This phase marks the transition between the end of Key Stage 1 and Lower Key Stage 2. The children look much more at specific spellings such as the j sound spelt ‘dge’ or g. They also learn to spell words with prefixes and suffixes. Children learn how to spell words when adding ing or ed to a root word such as drip/dripped or come/coming

The children are encouraged to use the knowledge they have acquired in their phonics sessions in their reading and writing activities in all subjects.


The children are assessed regularly by staff both through ongoing assessment during the phonics sessions and in half termly summative assessments. In June children in Year 1 take a statutory test in phonics. This test is conducted on a one to one basis with the class teacher. The children are asked to read a selection of real and made up phonetically decodable words. The results of these tests are reported to parents. Children who do not meet the required standard in the Year 1 phonics screening undertake an intensive programme of interventions before taking the test in the following June.