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The Federation OfBurley and Sopley Primary Schools



At Sopley & Burley Primary School we believe that every child can become a fluent reader and writer. This is why we follow the Little Wandle, Letters & Sounds phonics programme. We believe fidelity to the scheme is key to children making progress in reading and writing.

Starting in Early Years & progressing into KS1. Year 1 follow the phonics programme and Year 2 is taught the spelling programme. Where keep-up sessions are needed, interventions are put in place based on the Little Wandle half-termly assessments. The children's gaps are identified and addressed instantly. If phonics is still needed in KS2, rapid catch-up sessions are provided for individuals. Children that are on this programme have access to Rapid 7+ books that are linked to their phonic ability. To ensure there is a smooth transition to KS2, children in Year 2 will begin reading fluent Little Wandle texts in guided teacher-led groups. These will continue into Year 3 until their fluency ability is secure. 

Why learning to read is so important

  • Reading is essential for all subject areas and improves life opportunities.
  • Positive attitudes to reading and choosing to read have academic, social and emotional benefits for children.

How children learn to read

  • Learning to say phonic sounds.
  • By blending phonic sounds to read words.
  • Increasing a child’s fluency in reading sounds, words and books.

Reading fully decodable books

  • Children must read books consistent with their phonic knowledge.
  • Books must be fully decodable and follow the Little Wandle scheme.
  • Children need to read books in a progressive sequence until they can decode unfamiliar words confidently.

The role of Parents’ and Carers’ 

  • Develop a love of books, along with developing vocabulary and discussion.
  • Parents should use voices, expressions, discuss unfamiliar vocabulary, talk about the pictures, and predict what might happen next.
  • Give positive yet informative feedback in the home reading diary at least 3 times a week.

Supporting your child by reading

Although your child will be taught to read at school, you can have a huge impact on their reading journey by continuing their practice at home.

There are two types of reading book that your child may bring home: a reading practice book - this will be at the correct phonic stage for your child. They should be able to read this fluently and independently. A sharing book (Library Book) - your child will not be able to read this on their own. This book is for you both to read and enjoy together.

Reading practice book

This book has been carefully matched to your child’s current reading level. If your child is reading it with little help, please don’t worry that it’s too easy – your child needs to develop fluency and confidence in reading.

Listen to them read the book. Remember to give them lots of praise – celebrate their success! If they can’t read a word, read it to them. After they have finished, talk about the book together.

Sharing book (Library book) 

In order to encourage your child to become a lifelong reader, it is important that they learn to read for pleasure. The sharing book is a book they have chosen for you to enjoy together.

Please remember that you shouldn’t expect your child to read this alone. Read it to or with them. Discuss the pictures, enjoy the story, predict what might happen next, use different voices for the characters, explore the facts in a non-fiction book. The main thing is that you have fun!

E-library access 

We also have access to the full range of Little Wandle e-books that can support your reading journey at home.