Whiston Junior and Infant School

Whiston Junior and Infant School

Part of White Woods Primary Academy Trust

Saville Road, Whiston, Rotherham, S60 4DX


01709 828189

Our Approach to Phonics and Early Reading  - Fidelity to Little Wandle


At Whiston Junior and Infant School 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. 

Every classroom has a high quality reading area with a selection of books including old favourite stories and new and bold award winning texts.

Pupils in EYFS and Year 1 have a reading practice session three times a week which lasts for 20-25 minutes and aims to build fluency, prosody and early comprehension skills. Some pupils also have further time built into the week to read 1-1 to an adult. In the first autumn term, our Year 2 children also revisit this same strategy.


Pupils in KS2, who have not yet confidently 'cracked the phonics code', will receive the reading practice model as an intervention. 


Promoting a Love of Reading

Children have the opportunity to share stories with friends and ss well as choosing books from the classroom to share at home, they are also timetabled to choose a sharing book from the library. FS2 children enjoy their shared reading time with their Year 6 reading buddies.


Class Text

Our process of choosing the books we teach in each year group is not random. We consider what we are teaching in reading to be every bit as important as how we are teaching reading. Each class book is designed to capture the interests of the children and helps sequence the way we introduce knowledge in other curriculum areas. This is the qualitative aspect of the way we select a book. We also consider the quantitative aspect of the book by using the lexile framework to evaluate the reading demand, analyse the text's semantic (word frequency) and syntactic (sentence length) characteristics.

Use this link to find out our reading offer for our Y2 and KS2 children: https://www.whistonjunior-infant.co.uk/curriculum-intent-statement/reading-at-whiston


Further information:

Please click on the links below for further information and support with phonics and early reading.

Please follow the links to the parent and carers guide too

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