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What is Phonics? 

Phonics is a strategy for reading that helps children to learn to read quickly and skilfully. During these lessons children are taught to recognise the sounds that each letter of the alphabet makes and to identify sounds made by different combinations of letters. Children then apply this knowledge to help them decode words in a sentence. For example children learn the sounds, not letter names, of the following letters a….n….t. They then learn how to blend these sounds to form the word “ant”. Each of the sounds that the children learn are called phonemes and there are 44 altogether.​ 


Phonics at Clapham Manor 

At Clapham Manor children are taught phonics systematically, using the synthetic phonics programme Read Write Inc. Phonics. This is a whole-school approach to teaching phonics for children aged 4 to 9 to create fluent readers, confident speakers and willing writers. Children move from exploring phonics in the environment and rhyme in the Early Years, through to learning sets of sounds, before blending these sounds together to read whole words. In phonics our children read books that match the sounds they already know. They read decodable books specifically organised to match the order of the sounds being taught in the programme. 


Reading opens the door to learning. A child who reads a lot will become a good reader. A good reader will be able to read more challenging material. A child who reads challenging material is a child who will learn. The more a child learns, the more he or she will want to find out. 


Read Write Inc is designed to help children to learn to read effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into comprehending what they read. It also allows them to spell effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into composing what they write. 


For further information about teaching of this subject please review our English core purpose statement.