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Little Wandle

At Lydgate J & I School reading is at the heart of our curriculum. It is our intention that every child will be a reader. From the start of their journey with us children are supported to develop a love of reading. We follow ‘Little Wandle Letters and Sounds’ which is a complete systematic, synthetic phonics programme.

Little Wandle Letters and Sounds draws on the latest research into how children learn best; how to ensure learning stays in children’s long term memory and how best to enable children to apply their learning to become highly competent readers. They are exposed to high quality texts and through a consistent approach to the teaching of phonics, they are provided with the skills they need to decode confidently.

Daily phonics sessions are taught in Reception and Year 1, covering the sounds. A phonics lesson reflects the following structure;

From Phonics to Spelling: children on track at the end of Year 1 going into Year 2 will follow the spelling programme below which bridges the Little wandle Phonics.

At Lydgate J & I we adopt a mastery approach to teaching phonics. Children are taught in whole class groups and supported to access the age appropriate teaching content. The pace of the programme is maintained, with four new GPCs (Grapheme Phoneme Correspondences) and a selection of 'Tricky words' introduced each week. Any children who are not yet fluent readers will receive additional phonics teaching and 'Keep up' support regularly.

Children are taught the banks of 'Tricky' or common exception words aligned with Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised. Their developing phonics knowledge enables them to sequentially build up their store of words to become fluent and confident readers. Children are taught to use phonics as the approach to decoding an unfamiliar word. Children are taught how to apply their phonic knowledge independently and are provided with opportunities to practise and consolidate their skills in both reading and writing.

For more information on each phase, how phonics is taught in school and how you can support at home, click the phases below and visit the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds website.


Reception - Phase 2

Reception - Phase 3

Reception - Phase 4

Year 1 - Phase 5

Reading - Click

Phonics Screening Check

The phonics screening check is a quick and easy check of your child’s phonics knowledge. It helps school confirm whether your child has made the expected progress.  The screening check is usually done during June in Year 1.

The check will contain a mix of real words and ‘non-words’ (or ‘alien words’). Your child will be told before the check that there will be non-words that he or she will not have seen before.  The children will be familiar with this because we already use ‘non-words’ when we teach phonics from Reception.

Non-words are important to include because words such as ‘vap’ or ‘jound’ are new to all children. Children cannot read the non-words by using their memory or vocabulary; they have to use their decoding skills. This is a fair way to assess their ability to decode.

Please find some examples of the screening checks below.

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